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CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTIONS AND CITIZENS' RIGHTSAn Omnibus Comprising Constitutional Questions in India and Citizens' Rights, Judges and State Accountability$
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A. G. Noorani

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195678291

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678291.001.0001

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Dismissing Governors 1

Dismissing Governors 1

(p.234) 38 Dismissing Governors1

A.G. Noorani

Oxford University Press

This chapter addresses the power of dismissal of governors. The resignation of Surjit Singh Barnala as Governor of Tamil Nadu and the dismissal of Mohammad Yunus Saleem as Bihar Governor reveal the steep decline in norms. No prime minister has the right to direct a governor on how he should use his discretion as head of a State. A governor can challenge his dismissal on the grounds that it was arbitrary, without due cause, or that the principles of natural justice were not complied with. The governor cannot criticize an action of the president taken in his individual discretion. Upon dismissal, the 'governor should be informally apprised of the grounds of the proposed action and afforded a reasonable opportunity of showing cause against it'. However, a governor has a right to go to court against arbitrary dismissal, but this has not proved a strong check.

Keywords:   governors, dismissal, Surjit Singh Barnala, Mohammad Yunus Saleem, prime minister, court, discretion, State

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