Competitive Exams: Political Science Study Material Co-operative federalism

Co-operative federalism

To solve the Centre-State conflicts and promote co-operative federalism consistent with the national integration, the Indian Constitution, following the Australian Constitution, provides for a number of mechanisms. Certain extra-constitutional agencies also exist to help promote federal co-operation in India. Important provisions of the Constitution:

  1. Consultative Machinery. Under Art. 263, the President is empowered to constitute an ‘Inter-State Council’ for resolving the dispute arising between the Centre and the States and between the States inter se, so as to avoid the need to go through the judicial proceedings for the same.

    1. In June 1990, the Inter-State Council was formally constituted by the President. The Council is headed by the Prime Minister and includes six Union Cabinet Ministers, and the Chief Ministers of the States and two Union Territories (Delhi and Pondicherry).

    2. In 1996. a Sub-Committee was appointed to go into the Sarkaria Commission Report and suggest which of its recommendations could be adopted.

  2. Adjudicative Mechanism. Under Art. 262, the Parliament has passed the Inter-States Water Disputes Act, 1956~to adjudicate on any dispute or complaint with respect to the use, distribution or control of the waters of inter-State rivers or river valleys.

  3. Full Faith and Credit Clause. Art. 261, lays down that the final judgements or orders delivered or passed by the Civil Courts and not the Criminal Courts of one State shall be equally enforceable in other States, if they wish so. This is known as the ‘Full faith and credit clause’

  4. Delegation of Executive Functions. Under Art. 258, the President is empowered to delegate some of the executive functions of the Union to the State with its (State's) consent. Under Art. 258 A, similarly, the Governor of a State may entrust, with the consent of the Government of India, any of the executive functions which exclusively fall under the State's jurisdiction.

  5. Immunity from Mutual Taxation. Art. 285 says that the property of the Union, property owned by a Government company or statutory corporation do not come under this, and is exempted from the State taxation, except if the Parliament by law provides otherwise.

    1. Similarly under Article 289, the State property and income is exempted from the Union taxation, except in the case of trade or business carried out by the State Government or on its behalf.

    2. This is basically not only to avoid unnecessary conflicts but also to create space for mutual co-operation between the Centre and the States.