President’s Rule Imposed in Puducherry, Days After Govt Falls

The Ministry of Home Affairs on Thursday, 25 February, notified President’s Rule in the Union Territory.

2 min read
Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy tendered his resignation on 22 February after losing the no-confidence vote in the Assembly.

President’s Rule has been imposed in Puducherry, days after the the ruling Congress and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) coalition government fell, after having failed to prove its majority in the Assembly.

The Ministry of Home Affairs on Thursday, 25 February, notified President’s Rule in the Union Territory and issued a gazette notification to that effect.

As per the Ministry of Home Affairs notification, the Puducherry Assembly will be kept in suspended animation till its current term gets over later this year.

On Wednesday, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the Union Cabinet had approved a proposal to impose President’s Rule in Puducherry and that it would be sent to the President for his approval. The minister said that the decision had been taken since no party had stepped forward to stake claim to form the government in the Union territory in the midst of a political crisis.


This came after the LG of the Union Territory recommended suspending the existing assembly in Puducherry and imposing President’s Rule.

Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy had submitted his resignation to Lieutenant Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan on Monday, minutes after his government fell in the Union territory. His resignation has also since been accepted by President Ram Nath Kovind.

What Does the MHA Notification Say?

The notification, signed by President Ram Nath Kovind, said the decision was taken after the president received a report from the administrator of the Union Territory of Puducherry on 22 February.

It said that after considering the report and other information received by him, the president was satisfied that a situation had arisen in which the administration of the Union Territory of Puducherry could not carry on in accordance with the provisions of the Government of Union Territories Act, 1963 (20 of 1963).

"Now, therefore, in the exercise of the powers conferred by section 51 of the Act and of all other powers enabling me in that behalf, I (a) suspend, until the constitution of the 15th Legislative Assembly of Puducherry, in relation to the said Union Territory of Puducherry...," the notification said.

The president also suspended the operation of various provisions of the Government of Union Territories Act, 1963 (20 of 1963), thus imposing central rule in Puducherry.

What Does President’s Rule Mean?

Article 356 of the Constitution provides for the imposition of President’s rule in case of “failure of the constitutional machinery in the state”.

This implies the suspension of the state government and direct rule by the Centre.

It comes into force when the President invokes Article 356 of the Constitution – after receiving a report from the Governor and on the advice of the Union Council of Ministers.

While it is called the ‘President’s rule', it is the Governor who acts as the constitutional head of the state and the “representative” of the Centre. The chief minister’s office and the state Cabinet remains vacant for this period.

Essentially, all the state departments would then report to their corresponding central agency, but via the governor.

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