Just as the constitutional head of the country is the President, similarly the constitutional head of the state is the Governor in India. The responsibility of making and maintaining the Constitution within the state rests with the Governor. 

In this article, we will discuss all the important aspects of the Governor in a simple and easy way, so read it till the end. And also read related article to understand the concept better. links are below;

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What is governor?

India is a country with a federal system, that is, like the central government, there is a state government and the state government has its own executive. In the sixth part of the constitution, from article 152 to article 167, the executive of the government in the state has been told. There are mainly four parts of the state executive. GovernorChief MinisterCouncil of Ministers and Advocate General of the state.

The Governor is the constitutional executive head of the state, while the Chief Minister is the actual executive head of the state. Secondly, the Governor also acts as the representative of the Central Government. In this way the governor plays a dual role.

Remember there is no office of the Lieutenant Governor in the state like there is a Vice President at the Centre.

appointment of Governor in India

Talking about its appointment, it is a bit strange, because it is neither appointed like the President nor is it directly elected by the people. Rather, it is appointed through a decree stamped by the President. In other words, the governor is directly nominated by the central government, that is why it remains in a lot of controversies that if the central government nominates, then obviously he will be inclined towards the interests of the central government.

However, the Supreme Court made it clear in 1979 that the Governor in the state is not an employment under the central government, but an independent constitutional office.

Why is the governor not elected?

If the Governor is elected through elections, then at least the above problem can be solved. But there are many reasons for not choosing through elections, which the Constituent Assembly itself has told, what is that, you see for yourself.

The first thing is that the direct election of the governor can be against the situation of the parliamentary system established in the state and at the same time it can also create a situation of conflict between the chief minister and the governor.

Second thing that – direct election of the governor can create a serious problem at the time of general election in the state because the ruling party would like that the governor should be his own man and if this happens then he will not be able to become a fair and selfless head.

The third thing is that the governor is only the constitutional head, So, why the complicated system of elections and huge money should be spent for his election.

The fourth thing is that the center will remain in control of the states due to the system of appointment by the President, this will ensure the unity and integrity of the country.

This is one of the reasons why we abandoned the American model “where the governor of the state is directly elected” and adopted Canada, “where the governor is appointed by the Centre”.

Qualifications for appointment

Article 157 – Prescribes two qualifications for a person to be appointed as Governor.

1. He should be a citizen of India 

2. He should have completed 35 years of age. 

Apart from this, there are some traditions which are equally important such as – First , that he is not related to the state where he is appointed so that he can remain free from local politics. Second , when the Governor is appointed, it is necessary for the President to consult the Chief Minister of the State so that the constitutional order is ensured in the State. Since this is a tradition, sometimes it is followed and sometimes it is not.

terms of office

Article 158 – deals with the conditions of the office of the Governor.

The following conditions have been prescribed for the post of Governor in the Constitution –

1. He should neither be a member of Parliament nor a member of the Legislature. If such a person is appointed as the Governor, he shall have to resign his office from the House on the date on which he has assumed the office of the Governor.

2. He should not hold any office of profit 

3. The Raj Bhavan shall be available to him without any rent 

4. He shall be entitled to all kinds of emoluments, privileges and allowances as may be determined by the Parliament 

5. If the same person is appointed as governor in two or more states, then these emoluments and allowances will be provided by the states together according to the standards fixed by the President.

6. His economic achievements and allowances cannot be reduced during the tenure.

Like the President, the Governor also enjoys many privileges and immunities. For example , he gets personal immunities from legal liability for his official actions. During his tenure, he gets immunity from trial of criminal proceedings. He cannot be arrested and imprisoned during his tenure. However, civil law proceedings can be initiated against them for individual activities on two months notice.


Article 159 is about the oath and affirmation of the Governor .

Before joining office, the Governor takes an oath of integrity. In oath, the Governor pledges that – 1. Will faithfully discharge the duties. 2. Defend, protect and preserve the Constitution and the law 3. Devote himself to the interest and service of the people of the State.

The oath to the Governor is administered by the Chief Justice of the High Court of the concerned state. In his absence the senior-most judge available administers the oath.


Article 156 – deals with the term of office of the Governor.

Normally the term of the Governor is for a period of five years from the date of his joining, but in reality he holds office during the pleasure of the President. Apart from this, he can resign at any time by addressing the President.

However, there is no such law in the Constitution under which the President can remove the Governor. That is why when the Governor has to be removed, he is directly asked to resign. For example, the National Front government led by VP Singh in 1989 called for the resignation of all the governors who were appointed by the Congress government.

The President can transfer a Governor to another state for the remainder of his term. Also if a Governor, whose term has been completed; can also be reappointed to the same State or to another State.

A governor can continue in office even after his term of five years until his successor assumes office. The logic behind this is that there must be a governor in the state so that no vacancy should arise.

When the President feels that a situation has arisen which is not mentioned in the Constitution, he can make provision for the discharge of the functions of the Governor, such as – If the present Governor dies, then in such a situation the state concerned The Chief Justice of the High Court of India may be temporarily entrusted with the charge of the Governor.

constitutional position of Governor in India

Generally, there is a governor for each state, but according to the Seventh Constitutional Amendment Act 1956, the same person can also be appointed as the governor of two or more states. As we have discussed above that the Governor has been made a nominal executive, the real executive is the Chief Minister and the Council of Ministers. Three paragraphs are important in this regard.

1. Article 154 – It says that the executive powers of the state shall be vested in the Governor. That is, all the executive work will be done in the name of the Governor.

2. Article 163 – The Governor shall consult the Council of Ministers headed by the Chief Minister in the exercise of his functions other than those of his discretion.

3. Article 164 – The State Council of Ministers shall have collective responsibility towards the Legislature. This provision forms the constitutional basis of the Governor in the State.

Keep some things in mind here that –

The Constitution envisaged that the Governor should act on the basis of his discretion in certain situations, whereas in the case of the President it was not envisaged.

The Constitution has made it clear that if any question arises as to the discretion of the Governor, the decision of the Governor shall be interim and valid, and it cannot be questioned on the ground whether he had the power to take discretionary decisions or not.

The constitutional discretion of the Governor is in the following matters –

1. Reserving a Bill for the consideration of the President

2. Recommending President’s rule in the State

3. Acting as Administrator in the neighboring Union Territory (in case of additional charge) 

4. Fixation of amount payable to Tribal Zilla Parishad by the Governor of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram as royalty for mining mining

 5. To obtain information from the Chief Minister in the Legislative Council and administrative matters of the State.

Like the President, the Governor also has the right to take circumstantial decisions. such as –

1. In the event of no party getting an absolute majority in the Legislative Assembly election or in the case of the Chief Minister’s sudden death during the tenure and there is no fixed successor to the Chief Minister. 

2. In case of dismissal for not securing a vote of confidence in the State Legislative Assembly. 

3. Dissolution of the State Legislative Assembly when the Council of Ministers is reduced to a minority.

After the 42nd Constitutional Amendment 1976, the obligation of the President to advise the ministers was fixed, whereas there is no such provision in relation to the Governor.

The article will get bigger, so we will talk about the powers of the Governor in India in the next article. Click here to read it now . View the current list of governors by clicking here

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