State Government vs Union Government of India
India has a parliamentary democracy system of governance with bicameral legislature both at the central as well as state levels. The Union of India is divided into 28 states that have their own elected governments in place. There is a well laid out constitution that defines the roles, functions and responsibilities of both the central as well as state governments so that they keep functioning within their domains without any friction. There are many differences in these duties that will be harped upon in this article.
India is a sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic republic. Though government in India is federal in nature like the US, the central government in India has more powers than the federal government in US. This is where polity in India gets closer to the parliamentary system of democracy of UK. The constitution of India talks about subjects (union list) that are within the jurisdiction of the central government, those that are within the jurisdiction of state governments (state list), and a concurrent list in which both central as well as state governments can make laws. National defense, foreign policy, currency and monetary policies are in Union list and looked after exclusively by central government. Law and order, local administration and governance, and collection of some important taxes are in state list that are looked after state governments. Central government has no role to play in these subjects and state governments make laws regarding subjects in their list as they deem fit for the welfare and development of the state. Some subjects are in concurrent list namely education, transport, criminal law etc where both governments can issue ordinances and enact laws.
Some states in India have a bicameral legislature just like the center while others have a unicameral legislature. Chief Minister at state level is the head of the government just like Prime Minister at the central level and he is the person who is responsible for the development of the state. He is the head of the party that gets majority in elections that are held after every 5 years. Some of the states are rich while others are poor, deficient in resources and are dependent upon grants and loans from the center for their development. State governments are free to make and implement programs for the development of the state and the uplift of the people but they are dependent upon the largesse of the central government though the resources of the central government are distributed among all the states in proportion to their areas and populations.
This is precisely why state governments try to keep amenable relations with the government in power at the center. When same party is in power at both central and state level, the relations are obviously harmonious but situation is different from opposition party is in power at state level.
Difference Between State Government and Union Government of India
• The powers of both central and state governments are clearly demarcated in the constitution of India
• State governments receive revenues from the central government in proportion to their population and area and also when they face a calamity
• Central government has the power to take control of state government in case of breakdown of law and order (article 356 of the constitution)