5 yrs after Punchhi panel work ‘completed’, Centre set to invite state views again

Source: The post is based on the article “5 yrs after Punchhi panel work ‘completed’, Centre set to invite state views again” published in The Hindu on 29th February 2023

What is the News?

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has decided to start the process of seeking the states comments on Punchhi Commission recommendations.

What is the Punchhi Commission?

The Punchhi Commission was constituted by the Government of India in 2007 under the chairmanship of former Chief Justice of India (CJI) Madan Mohan Punchhi. 

Mandate: To look into the new issues of Centre-State relations keeping in view the changes that have taken place in the polity and economy of India.

In 2010, the Commission submitted its report to the Centre in seven volumes.

What are the major recommendations given by the commission?

On Governors: Governor must not have participated in active politics at the Centre or State or local level for at least a couple of years before his appointment.

It is necessary to provide for impeachment of the Governor on the same lines as provided for impeachment of the President in Article 61 of the Constitution.

Governors should not be burdened with positions and powers which are not envisaged by the Constitution and which may expose the office to controversies or public criticism like the posts of the Chancellors of the universities.

On the imposition of the President’s rule: All alternative courses available to the Union government for discharging its responsibility under Article 355 should be exhausted to contain the situation. The exercise of the power under Article 356 should be limited strictly to rectifying a “failure of the Constitutional machinery in the State”.

What is the progress on the implementation of Punchhi Commission recommendations?

The Punchhi panel’s recommendations were considered by the Inter-State Council(ISC’s) Standing Committee at its meetings held in 2017 and 2018.

Following these meetings, the Centre announced the discussions on Punchhi Commission recommendations had been completed.

But the Centre has now again decided to go back to the states for another round of feedback on the report.

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