State Government vs Central Government
Every country has a central government to look after entire territory of the country while the country is divided into smaller units for administrative purposes and these units are referred to as states or provinces in different countries. While it is the central government that handles the foreign policy, currency and defense of the territory of the country, smaller units called states are responsible for the look after of their territories and the welfare and development of its population. There are governments in place both at the center as well as state level, but they are necessary in the first place, and what are the differences between these two governments? Lots of people remain confused between this government dichotomy, and this article attempts to highlight the differences between central and state governments by highlighting these differences.
A state or provincial government becomes a necessity as it is not possible for a single government at the center administer large areas. Delegation of powers to a sub national entity becomes imperative as the central government alone cannot fulfill the hopes and aspirations of the people in remote areas. Also, there are differences within a country between areas that are cultural or linguistic as a country is not a monolithic structure. This necessitates local governance that is perceived by people as their own government. In fact, it has been seen that developmental works are carried out by local governments in a better and more efficient manner than if carried at a federal level. However, development is not the only thing that is required by a government and there are many subjects over which control is retained by the center. As such there are subjects under central control, subjects under state control, and those where both governments can make laws, but central laws have an upper hand whenever there is a clash between them. India is a perfect example of principle of power sharing where there is a provision in the constitution for central list, state list, and a concurrent list clearly spelling out subjects for the center and states.
Normally, foreign relations, diplomacy, defense, security of homeland, and currency system are subjects that are kept by the central government, while law and order, development, education, medical facilities, and healthcare etc are looked after by state governments. Division of powers and revenue sharing is clearly demarcated between the central and state governments, thus ironing out major problems when it comes to the center and state relations.
There are various systems in place in different countries pertaining to revenue sharing through tax collections and power sharing between state and central governments, but a study of these systems reveals that the upper hand is always with central governments, and they are more powerful than state governments. In India, the central government has the power to dismiss a state government, if it feels that law and order has broken down in the state and the state machinery has become ineffective. As far as relations are concerned, more harmonious relations exist when same party governments are in place at the center as well as state level.
What is the difference between State Government and Central Government?
• Central government is responsible for the security of whole country, whereas state governments look after the developmental needs of their people and territory only.
• Central government is more powerful than state governments.
• Some subjects are the prerogative of central government such as the foreign policy, defense, and currency, while law and order and development are the subjects under state government’s control.
• Central government share revenues with state government according to a pre decided formula.