Write a detailed note on Federal form of Government.

A federal government is one in which powers are divided between the national government and the regional governments by the Constitution itself and both operate in their respective jurisdictions independently. Us, Switzerland, Canada, Russia, Brazil, Argentina have the federal form of government. In a federal model, the national government is known as the federal government or the Central government or the Union government and the regional government is known as the state government or the provincial government.

Federal Features of Indian Constitution

  1. Dual Government
    The Indian Constitution establishes a dual policy consisting the Union at the Centre and the states at the periphery. Each is endowed with sovereign powers to be exercised in the field assigned to them respectively by the Constitution.
  2. Written Constitution
    The article of the Constitution are written and cannot be easily changed without due parliamentary approval.
  3. Divisions of power
    The Constitution divided the powers between the Centre and the states in terms of the Union List, State List and Concurrent List in the Seventh Schedule.
  4. Supremacy of the Constitution
    The Constitution is the Supreme law of the land. The laws are enacted by the Centre and the States must confirm to its provisions.
  5. Rigid Constitution
    Amendment of the Constitution is by a procedure of 2/3rd majority in each of the house and laws cannot be easily changed by any ruling party.
  6. Independent Judiciary
    The judiciary is separated from the Executive and Legislature. The Judiciary given its national and state level jurisdiction, exercises Original, Appellate and Judicial Review functions. It functions independently of the Executive and Legislature.
  7. Bicameralism
    It provides for a two house legislature that has an Upper chamber and Lower chamber. With the Lower house having powers of enacting financial legislation.

Merits of Federal Form of Government
a) Reconciliation of local autonomy with national unity.
b) Division of power between Centre and state leads to administrative efficiency.
c) It gives rise to big states.
d) Distribution of powers checks the depotism of central government.
e) More suitable for bigger countries.
f) It is good for economic and cultural progress.

De-merits of Federal form Government.
a) Federal government is weaker when compared to the unitary government.
b) Federal government is more expensive.
c) Provincial tendencies are very common.
d) Lack of uniformity in administration.
e) Threat to national unity.
f) Distribution powers between Centre and state leads to conflict.
g) Double Citizennship
h) Rigid Constitution cannot be amended easily for the changing needs.
i) The state government sometimes place hindrances to the foreign policy.

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