If the President is satisfied that a grave emergency exists whereby the security of India or any part of its territory is threatened by war, external aggression or armed rebellion, be may proclaim a state of emergency. The Proclamation may be revoked subsequently; if not, it should be laid before Parliament. If Parliament does not approve of it within two months, it will become ineffective.
It may be that at the time of the Proclamation, the House of the People has been dissolved or its dissolution takes place within two months after the Proclamation. In either case, it shall be laid before the Council of States. If the Council passes it, it must still be approved by the House within thirty days after the meeting of the new House of the People. If on the other hand, the Council itself has not approved the Proclamation, it will cease to be valid.
The power of the President to declare an Emergency may be made use of even before the actual occurrence of the aggression or disturbance, if the President is satisfied that there is imminent danger.
Effect of the Proclamation (Art. 353 and 354)
As soon as the Emergency is proclaimed, the federal provisions of the Constitution cease to function in the area affected by the Proclamation. As a result, there is a two-fold expansion of the authority of the Union.
First, the executive power of the Union will extend to the giving of any directions to any State Executive in the emergency area. Secondly, Parliament’s law-making power will extend to the subjects enumerated in the State List.
Further, the President is empowered to restrict or prohibit by order the distribution of revenues that are normally to be assigned entirely to the States under the financial provisions of the Constitution.
However, all such orders have to be placed before each House of Parliament for its approval. The combined effect of the operation of these provisions is the emergence of a full-fledged unitary government.