President of India – Eligibility, Elections, Powers, Functions

By | August 18, 2017

In the recent elections held for office of President of India, Ram Nath Kovind won the elections. Ram Nath Kovind is 14th President of India, he succeeds current President Pranab Mukharjee.

Read About : Vice President of India – Powers, Tenure, Eligibility, Elections

Provision regarding President in constitution-

  • Article 52   : “There shall be a President of Union of India.
  • Article 53   : The Executive powers of the union shall be vested in the President.
  • Article 54&55: Provisions regarding the Election of President of India.
  • Article 58   : Qualifications of a candidate to become President of India.
  • Article 62   : Impeachment of President from Office by Parliament.
  • Article 65   : The Vice-President to act as President or to discharge his functions during casual vacancies in the office, or during the absence of President.
  • Article 108 : President can summon the Joint session of Parliament.
  • Article 112 : Causes the budget to be laid before the Parliament.
  • Article 123 : President PROMULGATES ordinances.
  • Article 143 : He can seek advice from the Supreme Court on any question of Law of fact.
  • Article 280 : President constitutes the Finance Commission every 5 years.
  • Article 352 : President to proclaim an emergency & take Whole nation under his direct charge the administration of any State.
  • Article 356 : President to proclaim an emergency and take State under his direct charge the administration of any State.

Election of President :-

Ram Nath Kovind 14th president of India

Ram Nath Kovind 14th president of India

Qualifications of Election as President :-

Article 58 : Qualifications of a candidate to become President of India. A person should have following qualification for becoming a president of India, as per article 58.

  • A citizen of India.
  • Completed 35 years of age.
  • Qualified for election as member of Lok Sabha
  • Should not hold any office of profit under central, state government etc.

Who will Elect our President?

The President of India is elected by an electoral college consisting of:

  1. Elected members of both house of parliament.
  2. Elected members of the legislative assemblies of the state.
  3. Elected members of the legislative assemblies of the Union territories of Delhi and Puducherry (Added in 70th amendment of Indian Constitution, 1992).
  4. Nominated members of (Both house of parliament, State legislative assemblies of all states, legislative assemblies of Delhi and Puducherry) do not take part in President election.
  5. Members of state legislative councils (In case of the bicameral legislature) do not take part in election of President.

How do we Elect our President?

President of India is elected by proportional representation system by means of single transferable vote. Voting in president election is done by secret ballot.

Candidates for President elections must pay a security deposit of 15,000/-, they’ll get it back only if they get 1/6th of valid polled votes.

  • The nomination form must be proposed by 50 members & other 50 members must sign as secondary.
  • A candidate to be elected to the office of president, He/she must secure a fixed quota of Votes.
  • Each member of the electoral college is given one ballot paper and He/she is required to indicate his preference by marking against the names of candidates.
  • In first counting if candidate secures required quota, he is declared elected. Otherwise the transfer of votes in motion (In this Ballots of candidates who secures least number of votes are cancelled for next counting and his second preference votes transferred to the first preference votes of the other candidates.) and process continues till a candidate secures the required quota.
  • All disputes related to election of president are inquired into and decided by the supreme court whose decision is final.

Oath by the President-

The President shall take the oath of office in the Presence of CJI (Chief Justice of India). In absence CJI, senior most judge of the supreme court will administer the oath. In his oath president swears “To preserve, protect and defend the constitution“.

Tenure & Salary of President :-

  • The President holds office for a term of 5 years.
  • Office of the President of India is “Rashtrapati Bhavan“.
  • President gets salary of 1,50,000/- per month. Ex president gets 75,000 as pension.
  • In India President is also eligible for re-election to that office.
  • President can resign from his office before completion of his tenure by addressing resignation letter to the Vice President.
  • President can also remove from his office by the process of impeachment for “Violation of the constitution”.

Vice President acting as President :-

  • Article 65: The Vice-President to act as President or to discharge his functions during casual vacancies in the office, or during the absence of President.
  • Vice-President while acting as a President has all the powers and immunities of the President. This is the second most important function of the V.P.
  • He can act as the president only for a maximum period of six months (question asked) in case of Permanent vacancy(death, impeachment, resignation or otherwise.). Within which a new president has to be elected.
  • For Temporary vacancy, Vice President will take charge as President until President takes the office. In this he may continue more than 6 months.

Impeachment of President-

  • The impeachment resolution against president can be initiated by either house of parliament with signed by at least one-fourth members of that house.
  • Impeachment resolution passed by two-thirds of the total membership of that house, sent to the other house.
  • If other house (after investigation) passed the Impeachment resolution by two-thirds of the total membership of that house, then president removed from his office.
    Note-
    (i) Nominated members of either house of parliament (Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha) participate in impeachment of the president.
    (ii) The members of state legislative assemblies (States and UT’s), state legislative councils of states do not take part in impeachment of the president.

Powers & Functions of President :-

Powers of President of India :-

(i) Executive and Administrative Powers 

  • He appoints the senior officials of the state P.M., ministers, CAT, Attorney General, Chief Election commissioner, Governors of states, Chancellors & V.C. of central universities.
  • All Union Territories are under the President of India.
  • President of India will also become the Supreme Commander of the Defense Forces, but he takes salary for the post of President.

(ii) Legislative Powers 

  • President is Part of Parliament(Lok Sabha+Rajya Sabha+President= Parliament)
  • Appoints 12 members to the Rajya Sabha and 2 Anglo-Indian members to the Lok Sabha.
  • He summons & Prorogues the Parliament.
  • Article 108 : President can summon the Joint session of Parliament.
  • Dissolves the House of People(Lok Sabha). He can’t dissolve Rajya Sabha as it is permanent House.
  • Assents or withholds his assent to any Bill passed by the Parliament; Issues ordinances.
  • Article 123 : President PROMULGATES ordinances.

(iii) Financial Powers 

  • Article 112 : Causes the budget to be laid before the Parliament.
  • Sanctions introduction of money bills.
  • Apportions revenue between the Centre and the States.
  • Article 280 : President constitutes the Finance Commission every 5 years.

 (iv) Judicial Powers 

  • He appoints the Chief Justice and the Judges of the Supreme Court and Zonal High Courts.
  • Article 143 : He can seek advice from the Supreme Court on any question of Law of fact.
  • Empowered to grant pardons, reprieve, remit the sentences, or suspend, remit or commute punishments.

(v) Emergency Powers 

(a) National Emergency

  • Article 352 : empowers the President to proclaim an emergency and take under his direct charge the administration of any State.
  • The President cannot be questioned by any court for the action taken by him in the discharge of his duties. No criminal proceedings can be launched against him.

(b) State Emergency (Article 356)

  • It can be proclaimed by the President on the failure of Constitutional machinery in the State.
  • The Proclamation of the President’s rule should be approved by the Parliament within two months.
  • If approved, it remains in force for six months from the date of Proclamation of the State Emergency.
  • It can be extended for a maximum period of three years with the approval of the Parliament every six months.

(c) Financial Emergency 

  • Under article 360 if he is satisfied that the financial stability or credit of India or any part thereof is threatened.
  • Approved by the Parliament within two months.

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