Why there’s no direct election for President of India?

Q.  Which of the following is/are true?

1) In President’s election, in India, every voter has single vote.
2) Direct election for the president who is the nominal executive would not be right as he does not have much real power.

- Published on 28 Feb 17

a. Only 1
b. Only 2
c. Both 1 and 2
d. Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER: Only 2
  • Some members of the Constituent Assembly criticized the system of indirect election for the President.

  • They termed it as undemocratic and proposed the idea of direct election.

  • But, the Constitution makers chose indirect election because -

  • The system is in harmony with the parliamentary system of government.

  • In it, the President is only a nominal executive and the real powers are exercised by the council of ministers headed by the prime minister.

  • It would not be right and an anomaly to have direct election of the President and not give him any real power.

  • The direct election of the President would have been very costly as well as time and energy consuming due to the vast size of India as well as huge population.

  • Some members of the Constituent Assembly suggested that the President should be elected by the members of the two Houses of Parliament alone.

  • The constitution makers said that if the Parliament is dominated by one political party, it would chose a candidate from that party and such a President could not represent the states of the Indian Union.

  • The present system makes the President a representative of the Union and the states equally.

  • The expression ‘proportional representation’ in the case of presidential election is a misnomer.

  • Proportional representation takes place where two or more seats are to be filled.

  • In case of the President, the vacancy is only one.

  • It could be called a preferential or alternative vote system.

  • Also, the expression ‘single transferable vote’ was objected as no voter has a single vote.

  • Every voter has plural votes.

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