Issue :   
We Wish You all a Happy and Safe Holi              March 2020 Edition of Power Politics is updated.
Issue:March' 2020


Adhering to democratic values

Congrats ! The anniversary issue of your prestigious think- tank magazine is excellent indeed . The ideas mooted herein to strengthen our parliamentary institutions are essential to the functioning of any democracy. They deserve top attention of all stakeholders in our Republic . Ironically, the post-colonial landscape has witnessed a sharp decline in the cherished democratic values on the part of those who have been expected most to promote them – our legislators. Our decision makers would do well to take to self-introspection and care to function in the ways prescribed in the current issue of your magazine. Only then can the values of democracy be defended and preserved in the manner they should be.
You have done well particularly in highlighting the voices from the Valley that have of late been overlooked by the current government at the Centre. Our decision makers must rectify wherever lapses have come to occur in the matter. Democracy needs to be nourished. Citizens of our Republic must remain vigilant.

Kavya Gokhale

Effective defence

Bipin Rawat It is good that the Modi Government has created the post of a Chief of Defence Staff and appointed former Chief of the Army Staff General Bipin Rawat in the slot . We had long needed it. The CDS will act as the Principal Military Adviser to the Defence Minister and permanent Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee. He will consult all Service Chiefs and provide them directives . He will perform an advisory role in the Nuclear Command Authority. General Rawat has done well to have outlined his priorities towards creating an air defence command and common logistics support pools as part of measures to create jointness and synergy among our Army, Navy and Air Force.

Xi Jinping I am sure with this mechanism , New Delhi can assess better the military activities in our neighbourhood and respond appropriately . Intentions of China and Pakistan are not assuring. Beijing under current Chinese President Xi Jinping retains its Middle Kingdom complex. It supports Islamabad on almost every issue against New Delhi. India needs to remain on constant vigil.

Christopher James

Fallacious plea

Arif Khan This refers to Santosh Kumar’s piece, “ Is Kerala Governor a BJP spokesman ?” Kerala Governor Arif Khan could have avoided seeking a report from the State government as to why it chose to sue the Centre in the Supreme Court over the the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019. Khan’s plea is that Article 131 makes it clear that the State government cannot do so without first informing the Governor.
Former Kerala Governor P. Sathasivam, a retired Chief Justice of India has said recently that the State government may as a form of “courtesy” apprise the Governor in advance before challenging an important legislation in court. There is no constitutional requirement for a State to inform the Governor about its executive decision to file a case. This is a suit the State has filed against the Centre. The Governor is the representative of the Union. He cannot go beyond what the Ministry of Home Affairs wants anyway.

The Supreme Court judgment in the Shamsher Singh case holds “ Governor is a formal head. The real executive powers are vested in the Council of Ministers who are collectively responsible to the legislature.” Article 167, under which information is sought by the Governor [from the Chief Minister], does not have dictatorial overtones as the Sarkaria Commission on Centre-State relations has held...

The Governor need not be consulted before filing an Article 131 suit. He is not consulted for the thousands of cases that the State files every year. It is not a gubernatorial prerogative to be consulted or informed in advance about a purely executive decision to litigate.

D. Mangalam

Lost glory

Sushama Swaraj S Jaishankar It is unfortunate that India has of late started losing influence in the Muslim world. Our relations had improved a lot in the last couple of years . It was so good that in March last year , our then External Affairs Minister Sushama Swaraj happened to address the Organization of I s l a m i c Cooperation in Abu Dhabi. But in June 2019, the same OIC appointed a ‘special envoy’ on J&K . Subsequently, it issued several s t r o n g l y - w o r d e d statements against New Delhi'’ decision to amend Article 370. Saudi Arabia has agreed to hold a special session of OIC Foreign Ministers in Islamabad to discuss Kashmir. I hope our current External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar pays due attention to the causes of such loss of influence and take remedial measures to recover India's lost glory in the Muslim world.

Fazlur Rahman