Part Two – Side effects of being a GovernorFor the smooth running of a state (well ,not necessarily smooth), we need a constitutional head, a legislative head, a legislative assembly, and state judiciary. As we know, Governor is the constitutional head of a state, an agent of President. However, a supreme court ruling in 1979 states that, the office of Governor is neither subordinate, nor under the employment of central government. Office of the Governor is a separate, independent constitutional body.
Being a Governor is awesome, but when it comes to job security, you might wanna change your opinion a bit. So many cases can be singled out from India's political history, which depict the agonizing stories of Governors. No one ever going to shed a single drop of tear for those Governors, who were abandoned by the ruthless political agenda. Nor does any political Snoop Dogs going to rap for them...
All kidding aside, there are some peculiar cases of mass removal. 1989, is such an year, the Governor community wants to forget. It was also an year of interesting political phenomenons in Indian history. In the general election of 89, ruling party (Congress) had to fight with Bofors and LTTE, along with their usual rivals. The result was obvious - Congress failed to secure successful majority in Lok Sabha. National Front government came in force. Their new prime minister VP Singh requested a neatly written resignation letter from Governors, from ALL governors, that too in good handwriting. VP Singh, being a kind hearted PM, allowed some of them to continue. Reason was simple. The National Front Government wanted to do away with Congress-appointed Governors from power, and establish a strong chain of command. As we discussed earlier, stability is the one thing we need most in a democratic system.
Next thing we know is the collapse of National Front and Bam! Congress is back in the throne. It was in 1991, one of the most controversial and eventful year in Indian political history. Narasimha Rao became prime minister of India, after a move believed to be THE most cunning move ever made by a politician (I will tell you the story in another occasion). Congress Government then requested resignation letter from a number of Governors, appointed by the National Front. According to Mr. Brij Kishore Sharma, that number was 14 (Its the name of the guy who wrote this wonderful book on Indian constitution – how the hell I ever going to know about these boring things).
In India, we believe that, when adharma begins to came out of the scrotum of politics, there will always be someone with a cork to close it tight. In this case, it was Mr. Singhal, who came as a guardian angel for depressed Governor community.
Since childhood, Mr. Singhal was very fond of Governors. His mother used to tel him stories of great Governors, who worked faithfully as constitutional head, especially when he refused to take his rotti and dal. When he became a man, he couldn't resist his urge to file a petition in court, about this unnecessary removal of Governors.
Its all started with the decision of First UPA government to request resignation letters from a number of Governors appointed by the previous BJP Government. Mr. Singhal filed a case against this unnecessary removal, which has been referred to constitution bench in 2005.
Supreme court verdict was in favor of Governors. Court instructed that, there MUST be a valid reason for the removal of a Governor. A Governor should not be removed from his office before completing his 5 year tenure, without a strong valid reason...
And, all the Governors in India ruled happily ever after: Except Mr. ND. Tiwari – he is the only one who got removed from his post after this important Supreme Court ruling (Google about this incident if you want your head to explode with more irksome facts). Thanks to Mr. Singhal, now, no governor needs to carry emergency resignation letters in his pocket.
I think at the end of part one, I said part two will be about the job-features of Governors. I mean.., who gives a damn. Right!?