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Section B — Chapter 2

The President and the Vice-President

Class 10 - Total History & Civics Solutions


Short Answer Questions

Question 1

Who is the Head of State in the Union of India?

Answer

The President is the Head of State in the Union of India.

Question 2

Who administers oath of office to the President?

Answer

The Chief Justice of India administers oath of office to the President.

Question 3

What is the term of office of the President of India?

Answer

The President shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office. He shall continue to hold office, notwithstanding the expiry of his term, until his successor takes charge.

Question 4

What do we call the official process by which a President may be removed from office?

Answer

The official process by which a President may be removed from office is called impeachment.

Question 5

How can the President vacate his office?

Answer

The President can vacate his office by either of the following procedures-

  1. The President may submit his resignation letter to the Vice-President, in order to resign his office. Such resignation will be communicated by the Vice-President to the Speaker of the Lok Sabha.
  2. The President may, for the violation of the Constitution, be removed from the office by the process of impeachment.

Question 6

On what grounds can the President of India be removed from office?

Answer

The President may, for the violation of the Constitution, be removed from the office by the process of impeachment.

Question 7

Mention the occasion when the President addresses both the Houses of Parliament assembled together.

Answer

The President addresses both Houses of Parliament assembled together for the first session after each General Election to the Lok Sabha and at the commencement of the first session of each year. In this address he lays emphasis on the internal and external policies of the Government. The President has the power to address either House of Parliament or their joint sitting at any time.

Question 8

How is the Vice-President elected?

Answer

An Electoral College consisting of the members of both Houses of Parliament elects the Vice-President.

  1. The election is held in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
  2. The voting at such an election is by secret ballot.
  3. Each nomination paper should be proposed by at least twenty electors (MPs) and another twenty electors should second the same.

Question 9

What is the normal term of office of the Vice-President?

Answer

The Vice-President shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office. He shall continue to hold office, notwithstanding the expiry of his term, until his successor enters upon his office.

Question 10

How long can the Vice-President continue to hold office even after the expiry of his term?

Answer

The Vice-President shall continue to hold office, notwithstanding the expiry of his term, until his successor enters upon his office.

Question 11

How can the Vice-President be removed from office?

Answer

The Vice-President can be removed from office in the following cases-

  1. He may, by writing, addressed to the President, resign his office. Such resignation will be communicated by the President to the Speaker of the Lok Sabha.
  2. He may, for the violation of the Constitution, be removed from the office by the process of impeachment.

Question 12

State the power of Vice-President as the ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

Answer

The Vice-President of the Indian Union acts as the ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

  1. In this capacity he regulates debates and proceedings of the House and decides the order of speeches.
  2. He decides the admissibility of a resolution or of questions.
  3. He may suspend or adjourn the business of the House in case of grave disorder.
  4. He issues directions to the chairmen of various committees in all matters relating to their working.

Structured Questions

Question 1

The President of India enjoys vast powers. In this context, briefly explain:

(a) Any three of his Executive Powers.

(b) Any three of his Legislative Powers.

(c) Any two of his Judicial Powers.

Answer

(a) Three executive powers of the President are-

  1. Head of the Union Administration — All executive orders are issued in the name of the President. All the Union officials are his subordinates.
  2. Control over State Governments — The Union Government may give necessary directions to a State. During President's rule the control of the Union Government over States is complete.
  3. Union Territories and Border Areas — The administration of the Union Territories and the Border Areas is the responsibility of the President.

(b) Three legislative powers of the President are-

  1. Addresses Sessions of Parliament — The President addresses both Houses of Parliament assembled together for the first session after each General Election to the Lok Sabha and at the commencement of the first session of each year. In this address he lays emphasis on the internal and external policies of the Government. The President has the power to address either House of Parliament or their joint sitting at any time.
  2. Messages to Parliament — He has the power to send messages to either House of Parliament either in the regard to any pending Bill or to any other matter.
  3. Dissolve the Lok Sabha — He can dissolve the Lok Sabha and order fresh elections. Rajya Sabha is a permanent body, not subject to dissolution.

(c) Two judicial powers of the President are-

  1. The President is not answerable before any court of law for the exercise of the powers and duties of his office.
  2. No criminal suit can be initiated against him during his tenure of office.

Question 2

According to Dr. Ambedkar, "The President represents the nation but does not rule the nation." In this context answer the following questions:

(a) The President of India is referred to as a nominal head of the State. State two examples of his legislative powers that suggest his nominal status.

(b) Mention the circumstances when the President can declare a national emergency.

(c) Explain two discretionary Powers of the President.

Answer

(a) The President of India is referred to as a nominal head of the State because of the following reasons-

  1. According to the Constitution, the President is required to exercise his powers on the aid and advice of the Prime Minister and his Council of Ministers.
  2. All proclamations of emergency made by the President have to be approved by the Parliament within one month. If it is not approved then it ceases to exist.

(b) The President can declare a national emergency in case of danger of foreign aggression or danger to the peace and security of the country because of a civil war, insurgency or any other such cause (Article 352).

(c) Two discretionary powers of the President are-

  1. When the ruling party who has lost majority support in the Lok Sabha or when a vote of no-confidence may have been passed against it, recommends to the President to dissolve the Lok Sabha, then it is at the discretion of the President to either dissolve the House or ask another party to prove its majority on the floor of the House.
  2. The President can dismiss Ministers in case the Council of Ministers loses the confidence of the House but refuses to resign.

Question 3

The President may declare an emergency in a State, if he is convinced of the breakdown of constitutional machinery in the State. In this context, answer the following questions:

(a) When can such an emergency be proclaimed? Why is such an emergency often referred to as President's Rule?

(b) What is the duration of such an emergency? State two conditions under which such an emergency can be extended beyond one year.

(c) State the effect of the emergency on the administration of the State.

Answer

(a) If the President, on receipt of a report from the Governor or otherwise, is satisfied that the governance of a State cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution, he may declare an emergency in the State. This is called President's rule because the President may assume to himself all or any of the functions of the Government of the State.

(b) The duration of such an emergency is two months.

  1. If it were to continue beyond two months, it should be ratified by the Parliament.
  2. The Proclamation will cease to be valid for six months after the date of its issue even if the Parliament ratifies it.
  3. It can, however, be extended for another six months.
  4. Thus, President's Rule can normally continue only for a year.
  5. It may be extended beyond one year, under two conditions:
    1. When a Proclamation of Emergency is in operation in the whole of India or in any part of the State
    2. The Election Commission certifies that holding elections to the Legislative Assembly of the State is difficult.

(c) The effect of the emergency on the administration of the State is as follows-

  1. The State administration is directly placed under the President (i.e. the Union Government). The Governor of the concerned State acts in accordance with the instructions that are issued by the Union Government from time to time.
  2. The President may:
    1. dissolve the Vidhan Sabha of the State and dismiss the Council of Ministers
    2. keep the Assembly and the Council of Ministers in suspended animation.
      In both cases, the Union Parliament can pass laws, even on all the Subjects of the State List, for that particular State. Even the Annual Budget of that State is presented to and passed by the Parliament.
  3. When the Lok Sabha is not in session the President may authorise expenditure out of the Consolidated Fund of the State.
  4. The President may suspend the provision of the Constitution relating to any authority of the State except those relating to High Courts.

Question 4

According to Article 63 of our Constitution "There shall be a Vice-President of India'. In this context, state:

(a) the manner of his election

(b) any three qualifications for election

(c) two of his important powers

Answer

(a) An Electoral College consisting of the members of both Houses of Parliament elects the Vice-President.

  1. The election is held in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
  2. The voting at such an election is by secret ballot.
  3. Each nomination paper should be proposed by at least twenty electors (MPs) and another twenty electors should second the same.

(b) A person shall be eligible for election as Vice-President, if he-

  1. is a citizen of India.
  2. has completed the age of thirty-five.
  3. is qualified for election as a member of the Council of States.

(c) Two important powers of a Vice-President are-

  1. Chairman of the Rajya Sabha — The Vice-President of the Indian Union acts as the ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha. In this capacity he regulates debates and proceedings of the House and decides the order of speeches. He decides the admissibility of a resolution or of questions. He may suspend or adjourn the business of the House in case of grave disorder. He issues directions to the chairmen of various committees in all matters relating to their working.
  2. Taking over as the President — The Vice-President takes over the office of the President under the following situations:
    1. death of the President
    2. resignation of the President
    3. removal of the President
    4. when the President is unable to discharge his functions owing to absence, illness or any other cause.

Picture Study

Question 1

Study the picture and answer the questions that follow:

Identify the building in the picture and state where it is located. Whose official residence is it? State the qualifications necessary to become the President of India. Why is it said that the President of India is only a nominal head? The President and the Vice-President, Total History and Civics Solutions ICSE Class 10.

(a) Identify the building in the picture and state where it is located. Whose official residence is it?

(b) State the qualifications necessary to become the President of India.

(c) Why is it said that the President of India is only a nominal head?

Answer

(a) The building shown in the picture is Rashtrapati Bhawan.

It is located in New Delhi. It is the official residence of the President of India.

(b) A person shall be eligible for election as President, if he —

  1. is a citizen of India
  2. has completed the age of thirty-five years
  3. is qualified for election as a member of the Lok Sabha

(c) The President of India is referred to as the nominal head of the state because India follows a parliamentary system of Government.

  1. According to the Constitution, the President is required to exercise his powers on the aid and advice of the Prime Minister and his Council of Ministers.
  2. All proclamations of emergency made by the President have to be approved by the Parliament within one month. If it is not approved then it ceases to exist.
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