Mention three important functions of the Prime Minister.
The three important functions of the Prime Minister can be discussed in relation to his position vis-a-vis other institutions of the Union Government.
Prime Minister and the President
- The Prime Minister is the link between the Cabinet and the President. He is the one who keeps the President updated on all matters of government.
- If a ministerial decision has been made without consultation with the Council of Ministers, the President can ask the Prime Minister to submit the matter for the same.
- The President summons and prorogues the two Houses of the Parliament and dissolves the Lok Sabhaonly on the advice of the Prime Minister.
- The Prime Minister assists the President in making important appointments as well as dismissal of any members of Council of Ministers.
Prime Minister, the Council of Ministers and the Cabinet
- The Prime Minister is called ‘the keystone of the Cabinet arch’. The Constitution gives the Prime Minister the liberty to choose his Cabinet Ministers, Ministers of State and Deputy Ministers. However, their number cannot exceed 15% of the membership of the Lok Sabha.
- Since the Prime Minister is the recognized leader of the Cabinet, the President appoints Ministers and allocates them portfolios on the Prime Minister’s advice.
- The resignation of the Prime Minister is considered to be the resignation of the entire Council of Ministers.
- Regardless of the rank, a Minister has to vacate his portfolio if the Prime Minister directs him to do so.
- The Prime Minister presides over Cabinet meetings and decides their agenda. After listening to the views of the numerous Cabinet Ministers in such meetings, he also determines the future course of action for the concerned Ministries.
- The Prime Minister directs the Union policy by coordinating the individual policies of departments like Foreign Affairs, Defense, Economic and Technological Affairs, etc.
- Prime Minister is the link between the Cabinet and the President, he keeps the President informed about the affairs of the Union.
Prime Minister inside the Parliament
- The Prime Minister is the leader of the Lok Sabha, the popularly elected House of the Parliament.
- The President summons and prorogues the Parliament and dissolves the Lok Sabhaon his advice.
- The Prime Minister works as the government’s ‘principal spokesman’ and defender in the Parliament and makes his government’s policy announcements on its floor.
- He also has a moral responsibility of defending his fellow Ministers in the event of unrestricted criticism.
- Whenever contentious issues generate tension and bickering in the House, the Prime Minister is expected to intervene in order to cool things down.
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