To What Extent is India a Union of Institut Montaigne

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and revive and make more active moribund forums like the National Development Council and. Inter State Council 5, But Modi and the BJP are a part of the Hindu nationalist movement a school of thought which has. traditionally been in favor of a unitary state for defending more effectively the culture of the majority. community 6 For the first time in Indian history the BJP won an absolute majority in the Lok Sabha. the lower house of Parliament in 2014 and Modi had become Prime minister In the first part of. this paper we will show that the Modi government has not been fully faithful to the decentralizing. agenda that Modi had articulated during the campaign. In the second part we will observe that such a policy is not only at odds with the spirit of the. Constitution which codifies in detail the Indian federal system but also contrary to a strong. tendency of the Indian political trajectory the rise of regional parties for over thirty years a political. development that refers to cultural economic and social realities that all companies investing in. India have faced We will explore them too in order to evaluate the diversity of India which the. economic liberalization of the 1990s has accentuated further in socio economic terms. Map 1 The Indian Union, Source C Jaffrelot dir L Inde contemporaine Paris Pluriel 2019. K K Kailash The Chimera of Cooperative Federalism in Yamini Aiyer and Louise Tillin The Union and the States. On the ideology of the Hindu nationalist movement and its reservations vis vis federalism in the 1950s 60s see. the first two chapters of C Jaffrelot Hindu nationalism and Indian politics London Hurst 1996. The Centralizing Tendencies of the Modi Government. Narendra Modi s government is heir to a political tradition that has never fully accepted the cultural. diversity of India believing that the country s identity is embodied in the Hindu majority and in Hindi. a northern language spoken by less than 50 of Indians While Modi who had governed a state of. the Indian Union Gujarat seemed to give reassurance of his support for federalism when he took. office the country has experienced a noticeable process of centralization over the last five years. Institutional and financial reforms, Few weeks after taking over in his first Independence speech of August 15 2014 Narendra Modi. announced his plans to dismantle the Planning Commission a creation of Nehru which in his view. had been responsible of excessive centralization of power after all the Prime Minister since. Nehru presided over the Commission In January 2015 the Commission was replaced with the NITI. Aayog National Institution for Transforming India Commission 7 a new body that was supposed to. bring states to act together in national interest and there by foster Cooperative Federalism 8 The. cabinet resolution establishing the NITI Aayog explained that the States of the Union do not want. to be mere appendages of the Centre and it endowed the new body with the task to reshape this. relationship in such a way that states became drivers of national development Indeed Narendra. Modi often refers to NITI Aayog as Team India suggesting that it stands for the collective formed. by the Centre and the states, Secondly within the NITI Aayog a panel of Chief Ministers headed by Shivraj Singh Chouhan the. then head of the government of Madhya Pradesh recommended the reduction of the CSSs from 72. to 30 and the recognition of a clear distinction between the CSSs forming the core of New Delhi s. social programs and those which were not seen as priorities In the same vein the panel. recommended that the share of the flexi funds which is a allocated component within the centrally. sponsored schemes CSS to provide increased flexibility to states to meet local needs. requirements and to foster innovation in building efficiency within the overall objective of any given. scheme at the sub head level could be shifted from one of the CSSs to other programs according to. the circumstances should increase from 10 to 25 per cent of the total9 This component also deals. with relief during natural calamities or internal security disturbances. Thirdly in 2015 Narendra Modi also accepted the recommendations of the 14th Finance. Commission to increase by ten percentage points from 32 to 42 per cent the state governments. share in the divisible pool of taxes in order to improve their financial autonomy. Thirdly the BJP started to fulfill one of the promises it had made during the 2014 campaign which. is to create regional councils bringing together states with similar problems so that they could share. their best practices Indeed the Modi government created the Himalayan State Regional Council. which is now made up of Jammu and Kashmir which then had no government Uttarakhand. Himachal Pradesh Arunachal Pradesh Manipur Meghalaya Mizoram Nagaland Sikkim Tripura. and some districts in Assam and West Bengal, But this Council was created at the very end of Modi s first term in 2018 and it was the only one In.
fact most of the BJP s promises of decentralization have not been implemented fully and others. have on the contrary resulted in more centralization. NITI stands for National Institution for Transforming India but niti in Hindi also means well as policy. NITI Aayog National Institution for Transforming India Overview niti gov in content overview. Centrally sponsored schemes likely to be reduced to 30 Live Mint 27 June 2015. https www livemint com Politics RtbCWdokmYGtuSaN1umUSL Centrally sponsored schemes likely to be. reduced to 30 html,The recentralization of power, The recentralization of power under Narendra Modi resulted from both institutional developments. as well as political practices,Institutional contradictions. The decentralizing intentions that the reforms mentioned above reflected from 2015 onwards were. contradicted in many different ways, Firstly NITI Aayog remained a weak institution Not only it was much smaller than the Planning. Commission in terms of staff but it lacks expertise in many domains More importantly it has no. resource and grant distribution authority As a result the power that used to be exerted by the. Planning Commission has in fact been transferred to the Ministry of Finance. Secondly another major institutional reform the introduction in 2016 of the Goods and Services Tax. through the 101st amendment to the Indian Constitution had a clear centralizing effect This Indian. version of the VAT which was intended to unify the national market by harmonizing the fiscal rules. reduced the financial autonomy of the states which till then were fully in charge of their sales taxes. whose rates they could change according to their needs10 In the name of shared sovereignty. the GST that replaced the sales taxes and other indirect taxes is monitored by a Council where the. states have only two thirds of the voting rights The Centre which owns the remaining third has. presented this reform as a sign of its commitment to federalism but many states have expressed. their reservations because any decision can only be made in the GST Council if it gets 75 per cent of. the votes a proportion that gives a veto power to New Delhi a power centre which on the contrary. can prevail if it gets the support of only 19 states Here it must be noted that these states may be. very small as in the GST Council each state has the same number of voting rights irrespective of its. population It must also be noted that the decisions of the GST Council are binding to Parliament. in contravention to the principle of parliamentary sovereignty. Thirdly in 2017 the Modi government had the Inter State River Water Disputes Amendment Act. passed which was supposed to handle these problems but in practice the Supreme Court. resolved the legal dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu regarding the Cauvery River by. requiring the creation of the Cauvery Management Board which the Modi government established. only after the Supreme Court itself followed it up with him The conflicts opposing the states of Delhi. and Haryana on the one hand always concerning water issues and on the other hand Karnataka. and Maharashtra regarding issues of defining their borders were not handled by the authorities. Fourthly while the BJP had promised to revive the Inter State Council this body which has been. created for promoting cooperation between states see below has been convened only once. during Modi s first term, In addition to these institutional contradictions the Modi government s practices have not reflected. a strong commitment to federalism,Exerting power the concentrated way.
First in contrast to the initial discourse of Narendra Modi vis vis the Centrally Sponsored. Schemes the importance of these programs has not diminished while Modi resented the CSSs that. had been initiated by his predecessor he was naturally more favourably inclined towards those he. initiated himself The Swachh Bharat Mission the Clean India Mission is a case in point its budget. jumped by 288 per cent between 2014 15 and 2016 17 The Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana a. program intended to build houses for the poor saw its budget rising by 51 per cent over the same. L Kennedy Nouvelles spatialit s tatiques et conomiques dans l Inde f d rale H rodote n 173 pp 157 174. period As the name of this scheme suggests most of these initiatives were closely associated with. the personality of the Prime Minister whose photograph was almost systematically shown on the. ads publicizing these programs Correlatively the communication budget of these CSSs. represented sometimes more than the operational expenditures 11 This political and even. electoral dimension of the CSS was criticized by opposition ruled states as the prime minister. directly claims credit for flagship national schemes But the politicization of the CSSs was not the. only problem they took exception of They also denounced the fact that the Terms of Reference of. the new Finance Commission in charge of dispatching funds between the states see below for. the first time mentioned that one of the criteria presiding over this distribution of funds included the. states achievements in implementation of flagship schemes of government of India 12. Secondly Narendra Modi did not consult the Chief Ministers even when taking decisions with. consequences as significant as demonetization a term used to describe the abrupt withdrawal in. 2016 of 500 and 1000 rupee bills or 86 per cent of the currency in circulation 13 This order from the. central government decreed in the name of the war on dirty money and corruption on which it had. no significant effect crippled the informal economy which employs 90 per cent of the active. population who were suddenly deprived of the cash that they generally use. Thirdly some politicization of the position of governor which according to the Constitution of 1950. must establish a living connection between the states and the central government has also taken. place over the last five years Named for five years officially by the President of the republic but in. reality by the Prime Minister the Governor is supposed to ensure that the Constitution is respected. This position which was initially held by qualified individuals was gradually reserved for figures. from the party in power for whom the Prime Minister sought a golden parachute a cushy do. nothing job or a reward for services rendered In this way the position of Governor has been. politicized and governors have played a political role in the service of the party in power This. development reached its peak during the term of Narendra Modi who named BJP veterans to. positions of governor and was able to count on their support For example in the state of Goa after. the 2017 elections the Governor in a surprise move called on the BJP to form a government. although the Congress Party had a larger number of representatives though still without a majority. The Governor admitted to having taken this decision after asking the advice of a minister in the Modi. government which is not in the spirit of the Constitution but allowed the BJP to form a. governmental coalition The same situation played out the same year in the state of Manipur The. role of the Governor was also controversial in the state of Delhi which does not enjoy as much. autonomy as the others and whose Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has been one of the most. vehement opponents to Narendra Modi In this state the Lieutenant Governor has made the life of. the government particularly difficult 14, Last but not least in another infringement on good constitutional practices Modi s government was. the first since the 1990s see below 15 to make use of the President s Rule an emergency procedure. Aroon Deep Swachh Bharat spent Rs 530 crore on publicity in three years but little on grassroots awareness Scroll in. 22 Nov 2017 https scroll in article 857030 centre spent rs 530 crores in 3 years on swachh bharat publicity but. has little to show for it Another scheme that has been lavishly publicised intended to give access to gas cylinder to poor. Indian families Shine Jacob Ujjwala scheme to get Rs 293 cr publicity push from BJP ad brain Business Standard. 17 January 2919 https www business standard com article economy policy ujjwala scheme to get rs 293 cr. publicity push from bjp ad brain sources 119011700048 1 html. Achievements in implementation of flagship schemes of Government of India Voir sous le point 4 iii les. Fiscal Federalism for Social Policy in India Journal of Regional and Federal Studies 29 2 2018 187 217 DOI 10 1080 13597566 2018 1511978 4 Avani Kapur writes in this regard Politically a CSS set up allows chief ministers to leverage their role as

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