Governor : Examples of Misuse of Post – UPSC GS2

Context: Recent incidents of unjustified activism by Governor of various states.
West Bengal Case
  • The governor has been summoning the Chief Secretary and the Director-General of Police on a regular basis, and taking to Twitter and often tagging the Chief Minister when they do not turn up.
  • The governor also had an argument with the Assembly Speaker recently, in the State Assembly premises.
  • He has withheld assent to the Howrah Municipal Corporation (Amendment) Bill 2021, delaying polls to the civic body.
  • He has made allegations of misconduct in welfare schemes and questioned Government claims about investments in the State.
  • He has often been criticized for taking stances that support the opposition in the Assembly.
Maharashtra case
  • The Governor has stalled the election of Speaker since the post fell vacant in February 2021.
  • The Governor has taken exception to the amendments in the legislative rules for holding the Speaker’s election through voice vote instead of secret ballot.
  • The Governor’s view that the State Assembly cannot decide its own rules is unacceptable to the ruling coalition, but is being cheered by the Opposition.
  • The governor was criticised in the past for supporting opposition parties and their demands for a special session of the Assembly on women’s safety and security.
  • He had refused to accept the recommendation of the Council of Ministers on the nomination of 12 members to the Legislative Council, until the matter reached the High Court.
Tamil Nadu’s Case:
  • The governor has not acted upon the T.N. Admission to Undergraduate Medical Degree Courses Bill, adopted by the Assembly in September 2021.
  • The Governor is required to either send it to the President of India for approval or return it for reconsideration by the Assembly, but the indefinite delay in taking a decision amounts to undermining the legislature, and is regarded unjustifiable.
  • The Bill relates to a question of State-Centre relations, as it proposes to dispense with the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for medical graduate admissions in the State. NEET has been criticised for curtailing State powers, and the Governor’s delay in processing the Bill is aggravating the situation.
Conclusion
The imperialistic attitude of the governor has huge implications on the constitutional scheme of functioning and requires the governor to act within the prescriptions of the Constitution and be a friend, philosopher and guide to his government.