The Indian Constitution does not provide for a formal relationship between the C.M. and the President or the Vice-President whatever information the President or the Vice-President want about the state, is obtained through the concerned Governor’s reports. Yet, they do get opportunities to discuss the matters of the state whenever they visit the state.

On such occasions, the C.M. receives them, accompanies them to official functions and directs the machinery of the state government to provide all facilities to the dignitaries.

Another relational aspect is the imposition of emergency under Article 356 by the President, in cases of failure of the constitutional machinery in the state and the subsequent dismissal of the C.M. Actually, behind the decision of the President is the decision of the P.M.

It is a well-established fact in Indian politics that the Prime Minister can and does make and unmake the C.M. of a state by virtue of his being the effective head of his party, in case the P.M. and the C.M. belong to the same political party. In case there is an opposition party leader ruling as the C.M. in a state, the P.M. can manoeuvre to divest him of his position. In the selection of the members of the council of ministers of the state also, the C.M. has to depend to a considerable extent on the advice of the P.M. or the high command of the party. It is interesting that C.Ms, if they belong to the ruling party, almost always go to Delhi before announcing their respective ministries.


During the P.M.’s visit to the state, the C.M. plays an important role in gearing the state government machinery for making all arrangements. The C.M. too visits the national capital to discuss the problems of the state with the P.M. Moreover, the P.M. also addresses letters to the C.M. relating to any issue and the Chief Minister takes cognizance of such letters. Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru’s letters to the state Chief Ministers were instructive, detailed and, occasionally, philosophical in tone. But, then, he was fortunate in having Chief Ministers of good stature, and irrespective of the hue of the political party in power at the state level, the Prime Minister’s letters invariably received respectful attention. In case, however, the P.M. is also holding the post of the president of a party to which the C.M. belongs, their relationship generally becomes closer.

The C.M. has to interact with several Central ministers, particularly of Home, Finance, Education, Agriculture, Industries, and Rural Development etc. How much Central support a state gets in the form of financial grants, centrally sponsored schemes and assistance during disturbance of law and order depends, to a considerable extent, on the C.M.’s influence on and rapport with the Union ministers. The state’s representations in the Union Cabinet also influence the quantum and quality of support to the state.