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What are the functions of the Prime Minister?

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The Constitution assigns the following functions and powers to the Prime Minister:

(a) He selects other ministers. The Prime minister is the master of the Government. The Constitution provides that other Ministers shall be appointed by the President advice of the Prime Minister. Since the advice of the Prime Minister in the appointment of the other Ministers is invariably accepted, the choice really is that of the Prime Minister. The Constitution says that the ministers shall remain in office during the pleasure of the president. But in practice it is always the pleasure of the Prime Minister.

Although all executive authority of the Union is vested in the President it is invariably exercised by the Prime Minister and his council of ministers. The President is supposed to be mere constitutional head. The Constitution says that the President shall make rules for the convenient transaction of the business of the Government and for the allocation among Ministers of the said business. But here too, it is the Prime Minister who determines and assigns business to the various Ministers. The 42nd amendment to the Constitution has also made it obligatory on the part of the President to accept the advice of the council of Ministers.

He presides over cabinet meetings. The policies of the Government are formulated and decisions made in the cabinet meetings. The Prime Minister wields a great control in the cabinet discussions and enjoys preeminent position in influencing decisions. As chairman of the Council of ministers he exercises a casting vote. The ministers may discuss and present their own points of view during discussion, but ultimately the point of view of the prime Minister prevails. If a particular minister differs from his policies, he must resign as the Prime Minister's will must prevail so long as he is the leader of the majority party in parliament.

He is the link between the President and the cabinet. The Constitution says that the President will appoint the Prime minister to aid and advice him in the discharge of his executive functions. So he is the chief Minister who keeps the President informed of the decisions of the Council of Ministers.

He guides the ministers. It is one of the important functions of the Prime Minister to coordinate the policies of the various departments and ministers. He is require to see that the Government as o whole functions in solidarity and to ensure that the poiicies of the Government are implemented. He, therefore, guides the various Ministers and exercise general supervision over all the departments.


He is the leader of the House. Inside Parliament the Prime Minister is the leader of the lok Sabha and the chief spokesman of the Government. He shapes the domestic and foreign policies of the country. He is responsible for piloting important legislation affecting policy matters. The members of the House and the people at large look at him for all important announcements.

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