ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Legitimacy Crisis in Centre-State Relations

IN India the Centre and the states have constitutionally delimited jurisdictions. But since India is a Union of states, the Centre has a certain primacy, especially in protecting the territorial integrity of the federal polity. There is nothing inherently wrong in endowing the Centre with an overriding power in times of national crisis when, as Ambedkar rightly pointed out, the residual loyalty of the citizens goes to the national government. This may be regarded as the 'safety valve' of a democratic, federal constitution. But India is a country of continental size and diversity, and the marked regional diversities are broadly based upon linguistic and cultural distinctiveness. Such wide local variations, frequently reinforced by hand of nature, would not normally admit of exact standardisations imposed from a single Centre.

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