Governor vs government: Intricate battle seemingly endless

Priyada KS

The individual characters change, but the battle remains the same.

Arif Mohammed Khan and Pinarayi Vijayan

It is an ongoing battle. The territories are blurred, the battle lines are unclear and the grey areas seem to be calling the shots right now. Yes, the fight between the governor and the government is nothing new. It has manifested in various forms in different states. The individual characters change, but the battle remains the same. As the rage between the Kerala governor and government heats up the political atmosphere of the state, spoke to a number of legal luminaries seeking insight into the issue. Here are the excerpts:

The buck doesn't stop with governor: Justice KT Thomas

''The governor can send the ordinance to the president and ask for her opinion. If the presidents are in favour of the state government, they normally sign it quickly. Otherwise, they usually sit on the bill or get the advice of the Attorney General or even the Supreme Court."

It's personal feud : Justice Kamal Pasha

''The issue between the state government and the governor is just a personal feud. Both the chief minister and the governor have to keep the dignity of their post. In the current situation, they are behaving like street goons.The issue arises when the Union government and the state government are led by opposition parties. The governor is the representative of the central government. The Union government sometimes uses the governors to control the states that are ruled by the opposition parties. Earlier too there have been similar issues, but they were not as apparent as they are now."

"The governor is the chancellor and the higher education minister is the pro-vice-chancellor of universities in the state. If the governor is removed as the chancellor of universities, the minister will be unable to carry on as the pro-vice-chancellor as the new chancellor will be an officer who is the minister's subordinate going by what the government wants.''

SC will have to step in: MR Abhilash, lawyer, SC

''If the governor reserves the state Cabinet's ordinance for the president's instruction, the move is legally correct. The proposed ordinance is to remove the governor from the post of the chancellor. As the governor himself is the chancellor, if he finds it wrong or improper, he can reserves the ordinance and ask his appointing authority, the president, to consider and instruct. When the ordinance reaches the president, the urgency of the same can be decided by her as no court can give directions to the president. The central government gets the upper hand in deciding the equations between the state and the centre as it is a grey area. A change in this can only be brought about through an amendment to the constitution. Otherwise there should be a proper interpretation of this law by the Supreme Court.''

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