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Ram Nath Kovind – 14th President of India


Shri Ram Nath Kovind [born 1 October 1945 (age 71) Paraunkh village, Derapur, United Provinces, British India (now in Uttar Pradesh, India)] is an Indian lawyer and politician who is the 14th President of India. He served as the Governor of Bihar from 2015 to 2017 and was a Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha from 1994 to 2006. He was a leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Kovind was nominated as a presidential candidate by the ruling NDA coalition and won the 2017 presidential election.

  • Taking office 25 July 2017.
  • Mr. Kovind will be the second Dalit President of India after late President K.R. Narayanan.

 

 

President of India

The President is responsible for making a wide variety of appointments:

  • The Chief Justice, other judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts of India
  • The Chief Minister of the National capital territory of Delhi (Article 239 AA 5 of the constitution)
  • The Attorney General
  • The Comptroller and Auditor General
  • The Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners
  • The Chairman and other Members of the Union Public Service Commission
  • Vice-Chancellor of the central university and academic staff of the central university through his nominee
  • Ambassadors and High Commissioners to other countries (only through the list of names given by the Prime Minister).

Financial powers

  • A money bill can be introduced in the Parliament only with the President’s recommendation.
  • The President lays the Annual Financial Statement, i.e. the Union budget, before the Parliament.
  • The President can take advances out of the Contingency Fund of India to meet unforeseen expenses.
  • The President constitutes a Finance commission after every five years to recommend the distribution of the taxes between the Centre and the States.

Diplomatic powers

All international treaties and agreements are negotiated and concluded on behalf of the President. However, in practice, such negotiations are usually carried out by the Prime Minister along with his Cabinet (especially the Foreign Minister). Also, such treaties are subject to the approval of the Parliament. The President represents India in international forums and affairs where such a function is chiefly ceremonial. The President may also send and receive diplomats, i.e. the officers from the Indian Foreign Service. The President is the first citizen of the country.

Military powers

  • The President is the Supreme Commander of the Indian Armed Forces.
  • The President can declare war or conclude peace, on the advice of the Union Council of Ministers headed by the Prime Minister.
  • All important treaties and contracts are made in the President’s name.
  • He also appoints the chiefs of the service branches of the armed forces.

Pardoning powers

As mentioned in Article 72 of the Indian Constitution, the President is empowered with the powers to grant pardons in the following situations:

  • Punishment is for an offence against Union Law
  • Punishment is by a Military Court
  • Sentence is that of death

The decisions involving pardoning and other rights by the President are independent of the opinion of the Prime Minister or the Lok Sabha majority. In most cases, however, the President exercises his executive powers on the advice of the Prime Minister and the cabinet.

Emergency powers

The President can declare three types of emergencies: national, state and financial, under articles 352, 356 & 360 in addition to promulgating ordinances under article 123

 

 

 

 

 


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