Power to Promulgate and Repromulgate an Ordinance
Thu, 25 May 2023

Power to Promulgate and Repromulgate an Ordinance

In News: Recently, the central government promulgated an Ordinance that undid the unanimous verdict of a five-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court, which gave the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government of Delhi control over the transfer and posting of officials in the National Capital Territory (NCT).


  • In the Indian Constitution, the power to promulgate and repromulgate an ordinance is vested in the President of India. This power is derived from Article 123 of the Constitution, which grants the President the authority to issue ordinances when Parliament is not in session.
  • Article 213 deals with the broadly analogous powers of the Governor to promulgate an Ordinance when the state legislature is not in session.
  • An ordinance is essentially an executive order issued by the President on the advice of the Council of Ministers (Article 74). It has the same force and effect as an act of Parliament but is temporary in nature.
  • The President can issue an ordinance when both houses of Parliament are not in session and there is an urgent need to legislate on a particular matter.

Provisions related to the power to promulgation of an ordinance are as follows:

  • The President can promulgate an ordinance only if he or she is satisfied that the circumstances require immediate action and it is not possible to wait for the Parliament to convene.
  • The ordinance must be laid before both houses of Parliament when they reassemble. It must be approved by both houses within a specified time period, typically six weeks from the date of reassembly.
  • If the ordinance is not approved by both houses within the stipulated time or if Parliament passes a resolution disapproving the ordinance, it ceases to operate.

Repromulgation of Ordinance

  • The President has the power to repromulgate an ordinance if it could not be approved by Parliament within the specified time or if it is not approved by both houses. However, the repromulgation of ordinances has been criticized as it bypasses the legislative process.



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