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Prime Minister is the head of the government. Powerful rights enjoyed by him are explained below:
1.. The Prime Minister distributes the work to the different ministers;
2. He can dismiss an erring minister;
3. He presides over the meetings of the Cabinet;
4. He supervises and co-ordinates the working of various departments;
5. He is the main spokesman of the ministry;
6. He is a link between the council of ministers and the President.
7. He plays a leading role in making all policy statements as also the preparation of the annual budget.
8. He can call for any files from any government office of the country.
9.He can visit any government office without taking appointments from any government officer
10. He can advise the president of India to appoint a new government official by removing the existing government official in president's office or prime minister's office.
11. He can advise the president in appointment of a judge in a court of law.
12. He can advise the president of India on removal of a minister from the government.
13. He can advise the President in taking decisions related to the security and integrity of the country.
14. He can advise the President in making changes in the judiciary system of the country.
15. He can advise the President on issues of national interests and international matters.
16. He can visit the President's office without prior appointment.
17. He can visit and take inspection in any of the office of cabinet minister.
18. The final approval to the decisions taken in cabinet meetings rest upon the Prime Minister.
19. He can call for cabinet meeting anytime and anyplace.
20. He has the right to dissolve the cabinet meetings without assigning any reason.
21. He can ask the cabinet ministers to resign anytime.
22. He appoints the Cabinet Secretary and can terminate the service of the cabinet secretary anytime without assigning any reason.
23. He can appoint a Private Secretary and can remove it anytime.
Interesting Facts about Indian Prime Ministers:
Jawaharlal Nehru was the longest serving Indian Prime Minister, starting from India's independence in 1947 to his death in 1964.
Gulzari Lal Nanda served twice as the acting Prime Minister of India after the death of Jawaharlal Nehru and Lal Bahadur Shastri.
Indira Gandhi was named “Woman of the Millennium” in a poll organised by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in 1999.
Former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was the first woman to receive the Bharat Ratna. She was also awarded Bangladesh’s highest civilian award “Bangladesh Swadhinata Samman” in 2011.
Morarji Desai was the first non-Congress Prime Minister of India. He was also the first Prime Minister to resign without completing his full term.
Morarji Desai is the only Indian Prime Minister to be conferred upon the Nishaan-e-Pakistan (Pakistan’s highest civilian award).
Rajiv Gandhi was the youngest Indian Prime Minister; he assumed office at the age of 40.
Rajiv Gandhi was the first Prime Minister of India to live in 7, Race Course.
P.V. Narasimha Rao was the first Prime Minister from South India.
H.D. Deve Gowda was the first Prime Minister of India who was a member of the Rajya Sabha.
Dr. Manmohan Singh was the longest-serving Prime Minister of India who was a member of the Rajya Sabha (2004-2014).
List of Prime Ministers of India
Since independence in 1947, India has had 15 different Prime Ministers till now. There have been many outstanding leaders from different political parties who held India’s top post. Some of them served a complete five-year term while others governed the nation for more than five years. With Narendra Modi as the present Prime Minister, let’s take a look at the legacy left behind by the Prime Ministers of India since 1947.
Name Took office Left office Party
Shri. Narendra Modi May 26, 2014 Incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party
Dr. Manmohan Singh May 22, 2004 May 26, 2014 Indian National Congress
Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Mar 19, 1998 May 22, 2004 Bharatiya Janata Party
Shri Inder Kumar Gujral Apr 21, 1997 Mar 19, 1998 Janata Dal
Shri H. D. Deve Gowda Jun 1, 1996 Apr 21, 1997 Janata Dal
Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee May 16, 1996 Jun 1, 1996 Bharatiya Janata Party
Shri P. V. Narasimha Rao Jun 21, 1991 May 16, 1996 Congress (I)
Shri Chandra Shekhar Nov 10, 1990 Jun 21, 1991 Janata Dal (S)
Shri Vishwanath Pratap Singh Dec 2, 1989 Nov 10, 1990 Janata Dal
Shri Rajiv Gandhi Oct 31, 1984 Dec 2, 1989 Congress (I)
Smt. Indira Gandhi Jan 14, 1980 Oct 31, 1984 Congress (I)
Shri Charan Singh Jul 28, 1979 Jan 14, 1980 Janata Party
Shri Morarji Desai Mar 24, 1977 Jul 28, 1979 Janata Party
Smt. Indira Gandhi Jan 24, 1966 Mar 24, 1977 Congress
Shri Gulzari Lal Nanda Jan 11, 1966 Jan 24, 1966 Congress
Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri Jun 9, 1964 Jan 11, 1966 Congress
Shri Gulzari Lal Nanda May 27, 1964 Jun 9, 1964 Congress
Shri Jawaharlal Nehru Aug 15, 1947 May 27, 1964 Congress
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Roles and Responsibilities of Prime Minister:
Link between President and Council of Ministers:
The Prime Minister is the leader of the Council of Ministers and serves as the channel of communication between the President and the Council of Ministers. It is his duty to communicate to the President all the decisions taken by the Council of Ministers and to provide information regarding administration of the Union or proposals for the legislature as called for by the President.
Allocation of Portfolios:
He allocates portfolios among the ministers and distributes work among various ministries and offices. The Prime Minister coordinates work among various ministries and departments through the Cabinet Secretariat.
He is generally in charge of the following ministries/departments:
Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions
Ministry of Planning
Department of Atomic Energy
Department of Space
Appointments Committee of the Cabinet
Leader of the Cabinet:
The Prime Minister summons and presides over meetings of the cabinet and determines what business shall be transacted in these meetings.
Link between the Parliament and the Cabinet:
The Prime Minister is also the link between the cabinet and the Parliament. He is the chief spokesperson of the government in the Parliament, along with the leader of the party in majority in the Lok Sabha. It is his responsibility to announce important policy decisions. The Prime Minister can also intervene in debates of general importance in the Parliament to clarify the government's stand or policy.
The Prime Minister represents India in various delegations, high-level meetings and international organisations and also addresses the nation on various occasions of national importance.
Powers/Authorities of Prime Minister
The various powers and authorities enjoyed by the Prime Minister are as follows:
Head of the Government:
The Prime Minister of India is the head of the Government. Though the President is the head of the State, most of the executive decisions are taken by the Prime Minister. All the important decision-making bodies in India, like the Union Cabinet and the Planning Commission, run under his supervision.
Leader of the Council of Ministers:
As far as the Prime Minister's relation to the Council of Ministers is concerned, his position is that of "First among Equals". In the case of death or resignation of the Prime Minister, the entire Council of Ministers has to resign. The ministers directly report to the Prime Minister. He can also remove a minister by asking for his resignation or having him dismissed by the President. If any difference of opinion arises between the Prime Minister and any other minister, the opinion of the Prime Minister prevails.
Leader of the Parliament:
The Prime Minister is the Leader of the House to which he belongs. He can also take part in debates in the House of which he is not a member. He can also advise the President to dissolve the Lok Sabha.
Representative of the Country:
In international affairs, he is the spokesperson of the country. The Prime Minister plays a major role in directing India's foreign policy.
Facilities offered to Prime Minister
Some of the amenities provided to the Indian Prime Minister are:
Official residence: 7, Race Course Road or "Panchavati"
Personal staff Special Protection Group (SPG) who is responsible for his security
Prime Ministerial car (currently BMW 750i)
Exclusive aircraft (Air India One)
Selection Process of Prime Minister
The Constitution states that the President of India should appoint the leader of the party or alliance which is in majority in the Lok Sabha as the Prime Minister of India. In case no party or alliance enjoys majority, the President appoints the leader of the largest party or alliance as the Prime Minister. But he has to win the confidence vote in the Lower House of the Parliament as early as possible. A member of either the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha can be appointed as the Prime Minister. If he is not a member of either House of the Parliament then he has to be elected to either House within six months of his appointment. As the Prime Minister, he is the Leader of the House of which he is a member.
Term and Retirement Age of Prime Minister
Unlike the President, the Prime Minister does not have a fixed tenure. The full term of the Prime Minister is five years, which coincides with the normal life of the Lok Sabha. However, the term can end sooner if he loses the vote of confidence in the Lower House. So, it can be said that he remains in power as long as he enjoys the confidence of the Lok Sabha. The Prime Minister can also resign by writing to the President.
There are no term limits on the office of the Prime Minister. There is also no official retirement age.
Eligibility Criteria to become Prime Minister of India
To be eligible for the position of the Prime Minister of India, a person should:
Be a citizen of India.
Be a member of either the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha.
Complete 25 years of age if he is a member of the Lok Sabha or 30 years if he is a member of the Rajya Sabha.
A person cannot be the Prime Minister of India if he holds any office of profit under the Government of India, the government of any state, or any local or other authority subject to the control of any of the said governments.
Salary of Prime Minister of India
According to Article 75 of the Constitution of India, the salary of the Prime Minister is decided by the Parliament and revised from time to time. As on 31 July 2012 the monthly pay and allowances of the Prime Minister of India was Rs. 1,60,000 (US $2,600).
Pay and Allowance of the Prime Minister on 31 July 2012 (in rupees)
Sumptuary Allowance 3000
Daily Allowance 62,000 (@ 2,000 per day)
Constituency Allowance 45000
Former Prime Ministers of India are provided with:
Rent-free accommodation for lifetime.
Medical facilities, 14 secretarial staff, office expenses against actual expenditure, six domestic executive-class flight tickets, and unlimited
free train travels for first five years.
SPG cover for one year.
After five years: One personal assistant and peon, free air and train tickets and Rs. 6,000 for office expenses.
Right to residence of Prime Minister:
The official residence of the Indian Prime Minister is 7, Race Course Road. It is his rightful workplace. The official name of the residence is "Panchavati". It was built in the 1980s. The entire complex spreads over an area of 12 acres and comprises five bungalows. When a person is appointed as the new Prime Minister, his predecessor vacates the residence and the incumbent is advised to move to his official residence at the earliest.