It is high time political parties reached a consensus on the appointment of Governors by choosing eminent personalities bereft of political loyalty and who will uphold the dignity of the high constitutional office without bias (“Centre in a hurry, but Governors won’t quit,” June 18). In the end, the chosen person should be allowed to continue for his/her full term. Raj Bhavans should no longer be safe and cosy havens for octogenarian politicians and retired and loyal bureaucrats.
It was the Congress which forced NDA-appointed Governors to resign in 2004 after it came to power. Therefore, it has no moral right to cry foul when the BJP government has every right to choose whoever it wants as Governor. Unfortunately, the Congress has not been very democratic when it came to dealing with Opposition-ruled States. Perhaps it is getting a taste of its own medicine.
The debate over the “propriety” of replacing Governors after a change in government is at best just academic. It is no more an “apolitical” post as was conceived when it was introduced. The Congress has violated every rule, discarded many an ethic and then trashed moral responsibility. The BJP is only following the tradition set by the Congress.
In States ruled by a party other than the ruling party at the Centre, conflict between the Chief Minister and the Governor has arisen. It has also been seen that Governors have manipulated situations to precipitate constitutional crises, resulting in the imposition of President’s Rule. It is only natural for a new government to consider replacing some controversial Governors to suit its own ideology and convenience.
The unsavoury turn of events shows that political parties should ponder over history, the Sarkaria Commission recommendations and Supreme Court judgments and then take a unanimous decision that only “apolitical people” will be appointed Governors. They must do away with the terms and conditions that bind the Governor to his/her post. If this change is brought about, it will enable Governors to work without fear and maintain the dignity and authority of the high office. They should stop being made political footballs.
Korlapati Surya Kumari,
The office of Governor has been degraded over the years, almost becoming a rehabilitation post for political persons who were either defeated in elections or could not be accommodated in a suitable political post. Earlier, one had stalwarts, personalities in various fields, and constitutional experts who were appointed in order to enable healthy and good governance and guide elected governments.
Going through the list of possible replacements (June 18), one notes that political leaders are once again in the race. If this is so, the new government is only committing the earlier blunder. I once sought details on gubernatorial appointments through the RTI and was shocked to find that most are political appointees. There was hardly any “notable” personality.
T.V. Nageswara Rao,
The Modi government has a mammoth task ahead of it. To meet soaring expectations, it is necessary to maintain a federal spirit, building bonds with States. Rather than indulging in a game of political vendetta, there must be a spirit of cooperation.
Prachi Priyadarshini Gupta,
The removal of “political” Governors can be justified only if those who replace them are eminent people in society with an apolitical background and are loyal only to the Constitution. Mr. Modi has shown his resolve to strengthen the federal structure, but any wrong move on this front will only be a repetition of political traditions antithetical to the Constitution, democracy, federalism and good governance.
The perceived move only smacks of political intolerance and goes against the spirit of the conciliatory speech made by the Prime Minister in Parliament. He should carry forward the goodwill generated by his speech and rise above partisan politics so that his pledge of good governance is realised.
The problem lies in the fact that every party views the person occupying the gubernatorial post as being an agent of the Centre. A way out could be in looking for apolitical persons or going by the recommendations of the Sarkaria Commission. Alternatively, the Governor should be elected by the State Legislature from among eminent persons outside the State. Despite Article 156 saying “The Governor shall hold office during the pleasure of the President,” the Centre must lay before both Houses of Parliament a statement explaining the circumstances leading to his/her removal or resignation.
Over the years, a Governor’s contribution to nation-building has been negligible. Most of them have lost elections and are then put out to pasture. India has to shed this British raj complex. The Governor’s post is an anomaly that must be done away with. It will also help prune expenditure.
Keywords: Governors resignations