GOVERNOR’S POWERS ON BILL (Syllabus: GS Paper 2 – Polity)

News-CRUX-10     21st November 2023        
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Context: Recently, the Supreme Court acknowledged the Tamil Nadu government's contention that the Constitution does not grant Governor the "discretion" to withhold the 10 Bills that were "re-passed" by the State Legislative Assembly.


  • About: They serve as the Chief Executive Head of a State, similar to the role of the President of India. 

oIn this capacity, they function as both a nominal (titular or constitutional) head and an agent of the central government, signifying a dual role for the office of the governor.

  • Appointment: By the President.
  • Oath: By the Chief Justice of the concerned State’s High Court.
  • Tenure: 5 Years.

Governor’s Powers over State Bills

  • Article 200: This Art of the Indian Constitution delineates the procedure for a Bill approved by the Legislative Assembly of a State to be presented to the Governor for assent. 

oThe Governor holds the authority to either assent to the Bill, withhold assent, or reserve the Bill for consideration by the President. 

oAdditionally, the Governor has the option to return the Bill to the Legislative Assembly with a message, requesting reconsideration.

  • Article 201: It stipulates that when a Bill is reserved for the consideration of the President, the President can either assent to or withhold assent from the Bill. 

oFurthermore, the President has the power to instruct the Governor to return the Bill to the Legislative Assembly for reconsideration.

  • In Nabam Rebia and Bamang Felix vs Deputy Speaker: The Governor cannot withhold assent to a Bill indefinitely but must return it to the Assembly with a message and this could include his recommendation for amendments to the Bill.
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