Chief Minister of a state is a Constitutional post under Article 164 of our constitution. Article 164 states - Every state shall have a Chief Minister. Chief Minister is the real head of the state Government, whereas Governor is nominal/symbolic head.
Chief Minister is appointed by the Governor of the state. He is affirmed oath of office by Governor. If Chief Minister want to resign, he submits his resignation to the Governor.
Tenure of Chief Minister is 5 years but not fixed. He holds office till he has the majority support of Vidhan Sabha. The moment he loses the majority support of Vidhan Sabha, he has to resign.
Any India citizen above the age of 25 years and a member of either house of state legislature can be appointed as Chief Minister by the Governor. Governor can also appoint a person as Chief Minister who is not a member of either house of state legislature but in that case, Chief Minister must secure membership of either house of state legislature within 6 months of his appointment to continue on the post.
In the last Legislative Assembly elections of West Bengal held in April 2021, Miss Mamta Barnerjee could not win the legislative assembly election from Nandigram Constituency but she was appointed as Chief Minsiter by the Governdor Jagdeep Dhankar. Now she is contesting election of Vidhan Sabha from Bhawanipur Constituency to be held on 30th Sep 2021. She must win this election to continue as Chief Minister of West Bengal.
Election of Chief Minister
Chief Minister is elected by members of Vidhan Sabha having majority in Vidhan Sabha and is appointed as Chief Minister by Governor of the state.
Governor is bound by the Constitution to act on the advice of Chief Minister. Chief Minister can object to any decision taken alone by Governor.
State Council of Ministers
First of all Governor administer oath of office to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister do form his Council of Ministers. It is the right of the Chief Minister to make Council of Ministers of his choice.
(a) Ministers are appointed by the Governor on the advice of Chief Minister.
(b) Portfolios i,e, department to ministers are allotted by Governor on the advice of Chief Minister.
(c) Portfolio of a minister can be changed by Governor on the advice of Chief Minister.
(d) A ministers can be dismissed from State Council of Ministers by the Governor on the advice of Chief Minister.
Qualification to be a Minister
Governor can appoint a person who is also a member of either house of state legislature a Minister in State Council of Ministers on the advice of Chief Minister. Governor can also appoint a person as minister who is not a member of either house of state legislature but in that case he has to attain membership of either house of state legislature within 6 months to his appointment to continue as minister.
Structure of State Council of Ministers
It is the right of the Chief Minister to decide how many tiers of State Council of Ministers he want to make. He can make one tier, two tier or three tier State Council of Ministers.
Generally State Council of Ministers is of three tiers as:
(a) Cabinet Ministers – They are incharge of their particular ministry
(b) Ministers of State – They assist cabinet minister of their particular ministry
(c) Deputy Ministers – They assist minister of state of their particular ministry.
Max Size of State Council of Ministers
By 91st Constitution Amendment Act 2003 the maximum size of State Council of Ministers cannot be more than 15% of the total strength of Vidhan Sabha (e,g, as the strength of Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly is 230, so in MP, the maximum size of state council of Ministers including Chief Minister can not be more than 15% of 230 i,e 34)
Deference between State Cabinet and State Council of Ministers
State Cabinet = C.M. + State Cabinet Ministers only
State Council of Ministers = C.M. + All Ministers
State Cabinet is a smaller body consisting of Chief Minister + Cabinet Ministers only whereas State Council of Ministers is a bigger body consisting of Chief Minister + all ministers. All important decisions are taken by State Cabinet and not by State Council of Ministers.
Resignation of Chief Minister is resignation of the whole State Council of Ministers.
(1) In India, we do notice the post of Deputy Prime Minister and Deputy Chief Ministers. Mr. Charan Singh, Jagjivan Ram, Devi Lal, Lal Krishan Adwani etc have held the post of Deputy Prime Ministers. Presently UP has 2, Andhra Pradesh has 5 Deputy Chief Ministers. There is no provisions of post of Deputy Prime Minister or Deputy Chief Minister in our Constitution. Deputy Prime Minister is just like one of the Union Cabinet Minister and Deputy Chief Minister is like one of State Cabinet Minister.
(2) Presently Aditya Yogi Nath and Udhav Thakrey are members of State Vidhan Parishad & not of Vidhan Sabha & Miss Mamta Banerjee is not a member of State Legislative Assembly.
(3) Chief Minister of Punjab Cap. Amrinder Singh has resigned and Sh. Charanjit Singh Channi will be the new CM and Sukhjinder Randhawa & OP Soni will be the Deputy Chief Ministers of Punjab.