In previous chapters, you have studied how people elect their government. However, democracy is not just about people electing their rulers. In this chapter, you will get to know that rulers have to follow some rules and procedures with and within institutions for running a democratic government. The CBSE Notes Class 9 Political Science Chapter 4 – Working of Institutions begins with the manner in which major decisions are taken and implemented in India. You will come across 3 institutions that play a key role in major decisions i.e, the legislature, executive and judiciary.

CBSE Class 9 Social Science notes will assist students in studying the topic thoroughly and clearly.

These CBSE Class 9 Social Science notes were written by subject experts who made the study material very basic, both in terms of language and format.



Process Of Taking A Major Policy Decision

A government order is used to make a significant policy decision. To understand how a significant policy decision is made, it is necessary to understand how government orders are issued.

A Government Order 

  • Issuing Of Government Order : A government order is a written directive issued by a government authority on a particular subject (office). This is referred to as an Office Memorandum.
  • Controversy Over The Order : A government order is a formal instruction from a government authority about a certain topic (office). This is referred to as a Memorandum of Office.
  • Court’s Intervention And Modifications In Order : The Supreme Court or High Courts evaluate the order’s constitutional legitimacy and may amend it if any constitutional provisions are violated.
  • Appeal To Stop Implementation Of Order : Several individuals and organisations have filed a variety of legal challenges to the ruling. They have filed an appeal seeking to have the ruling declared unlawful and its execution delayed.

The Decision Makers

  • President : He is the country’s head of state and the country’s highest official authority.
  • Prime Minister : He is the head of state and has all executive powers. He makes the majority of cabinet decisions at cabinet sessions.
  • Parliament : It is presided over by the President and is divided into two houses: the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. The Lok Sabha, or Lower House, is made up of elected representatives from the people, while the Rajya Sabha, or Upper House, is made up of members from the States and Union Territories. The Prime Minister must command the backing of a majority of members of the Lok Sabha.

Need For Political Institutions

Political Institutions are the arrangements established in democracies for the purpose of making and enforcing decisions, as well as determining what is wrong and what is right in the event of disagreements over the choice.

Thus, democracy cannot operate without the functions of the duties given to political institutions. Institutions are governed by rules and regulations that may suffocate their leaders.

Opposing Government Decisions

If some individuals or organisations are dissatisfied with government orders and there is a disagreement over the government order, they may bring lawsuits in the Supreme Court or the High Court.

For instance, many individuals and organisations filed a lawsuit in the Supreme Court challenging the Government of India’s decision to reserve 27% of civil positions and services to Socially and Educationally Backward Classes.

The lawsuit was dubbed ‘Indira Sawhney and Others vs. Union of India’.


Parliament is a body of individuals chosen on a regular basis by the country’s citizens, either directly (through direct elections) or indirectly (via indirect elections) (through indirect election).

Before action, the government submits all decisions to Parliament for debate. Only when Parliament has approved a decision can it be implemented.

Need Of Parliament

  1. Parliament is the ultimate authority in our nation for making new laws and editing existing ones.
  2. Parliament has complete authority over the government’s finances. In the majority of nations, public funds may be used only with the approval of the parliament.
  3. Parliament is a country’s highest venue for discussion and debate on public policy and public problems. Parliament may request information on any subject.
  4. In India, Parliament maintains direct and complete authority over the government. Those in power may make decisions only with the backing of Parliament.

Two Houses Of Parliament

Parliament is a key fact of modern democracies. The function and authority of Parliament in large nations have been split into two sections. These are referred to as Chambers or Houses.

  • Rajya Sabha (Council Of States) Or Upper Chamber: It is indirectly elected and serves a variety of purposes, including representing the interests of different states, regions, and federal divisions.
  • Lok Sabha (House Of The People) Or Lower Chamber: It is often directly chosen by the people and exercises actual authority on their behalf. Although she is not a member of either house, the President of India is a member of Parliament. As a result, no measure passed by the chambers becomes effective until it receives the President’s approval.

Special Powers Of Lok Sabha Over Rajya Sabha

Our Constitution provides Rajya Sabha with certain different powers, but the Lok Sabha retains supreme authority in the majority of cases.

Ordinary law must be approved by both chambers. However, if there is a disagreement between the two houses, a joint session is convened to resolve the disagreement. Due to the greater number of MPs in this session, Lok Sabha’s perspective is likely to prevail.

The Rajya Sabha may only postpone or modify a money bill for a period of 14 days. The Lok Sabha, on the other hand, may or may not approve these modifications.

In financial issues, the Lok Sabha has more authority. The Rajya Sabha cannot reject the government’s budget or any other money-related measure or Money Bill after it has been passed by the Lok Sabha.

The Lok Sabha has ultimate authority over the Council of Ministers. Only a person with the backing of a majority of Lok Sabha members is chosen Prime Minister.

If a majority of members of the Lok Sabha say  ‘No confidence’ in the Council of Ministers, all ministers, including the Prime Minister, must resign. However, the Rajya Sabha lacks this authority.


The officials who make daily choices but do not have ultimate authority over them. Half of the population is classified as executive. They are termed executive because they are in charge of carrying out the government’s policies.

Political And Permanent· Executive

In a democratic nation, the executive branch is divided into two groups. There are two types of executive: permanent and political.

  • Permanent Executive: They are chosen by the populace for a certain length of time. They make significant judgments. Political leaders are classified in this manner.
  • Political Executive: They are appointed for an extended period of time. Additionally, they are referred to as civil servants. They stay in office regardless of the ruling party. They report to the political executive and help them with day-to-day administration.

Powers Of Permanent And Political Executive

  1. Political executives have greater authority than permanent executives. This is because the political administration is chosen by the people, and the people will always take priority in a democracy. They are accountable to the public for the full extent of their actions.
  2. Permanent executives are better educated and knowledgeable about their ministry’s topic. For instance, the finance ministry’s advisors are more knowledgeable in economics than the finance minister.
  3. However, the finance minister’s decision will remain final. The political executive may consult with the permanent executive and then make the final decision on the overall policy’s structure and goals must be implemented.

Prime Minister

  1. The Prime Minister is the head of government and is really in charge of all government functions.
  2. As Prime Minister, the President appoints the leader of the majority party or coalition of parties with a majority in the Lok Sabha. In the event that no one party obtains a majority, the President chooses the individual most likely to get majority support.
  3. The Prime Minister’s tenure is not set. He retains power as long as he remains the Majority or coalition party’s leader.

Powers Of Prime Minister

The Prime Minister has complete discretion over the appointment of ministers, as long as they are Members of Parliament.

He organises the work of several departments and makes final decisions in the event of departmental disputes.

He is in charge of several ministries, and all ministers report to him. He assigns and reassigns duties to ministers. He rules over and makes the majority of decisions during Cabinet sessions.

Additionally, he has the authority to remove ministers. When the Prime Minister resigns, the whole cabinet resigns as well.

Council Of Ministers

It is the official title for the body composed of all ministries. It typically contains between 60 and 80 ministers of various levels. The Council of Ministers is collectively responsible.

The Council  of Ministers comprise :

  1. Typically, independent ministers of state are in charge of smaller ministries. They are invited to Cabinet sessions on a particular instance basis.
  2. Cabinet Ministers are typically the highest-ranking officials of the governing party or parties in charge of the major ministries. Cabinet is the Council of Ministers’ inner ring. It is composed of around twenty ministers.
  3. Ministers of State report to Cabinet Ministers and are expected to help them.

Appointment Of Council Of Ministers

Following the Prime Minister’s appointment, The President appoints the Ministerial Council on the advice of the Prime Minister. They are often affiliated with the party or coalition that has the majority in the Lok Sabha.

Occasionally, an individual who is not a member of Parliament may become a minister. However, such a person must be elected to one of Parliament’s Houses within six months following his appointment.

Cabinet Form Of Government

  1. Because it is difficult for all ministers to meet routinely and discuss everything, Cabinet meetings are used to make decisions.
  2. Thus, parliamentary democracy is often referred to as the Cabinet form of government in the majority of nations.
  3. The secretaries give the ministers the required background knowledge to make decisions.

The President

The President is the state’s chief. Our political system vests the head of state with merely notional authority. Thus, the President is comparable to the Queen of the United Kingdom, whose duties are mostly ceremonial.

Appointment Of The President

The President of India is indirectly chosen by an electoral college using the single transferable vote in line with the proportional representation system.

The electoral college is comprised of the following:

  1. The elected members of the states’ Legislative Assemblies (MLAs).
  2. Members of Parliament elected to both Houses (MPs).
  3. The Union Territories of Delhi and Puducherry’s elected Members of Legislative Assemblies (MLAs).

To win the presidency, a candidate must get a majority of votes. This guarantees that the President is seen as the representative of the whole country. The President will never be able to claim the same level of direct public mandate as the Prime Minister. This guarantees that he will stay a nominal executive.

Powers Of The President

All executive branch functions are conducted in the President’s name. In her name, the government issues all laws and significant policy decisions.

The President signs all international treaties and accords. The President is India’s ultimate commander of the armed forces.

She has extraordinary abilities. the ability to deal with an unexpected and life-threatening events. the authority to declare a state of emergency or the President’s rule and to issue an ordinance.

All significant appointments are made in the President’s name. These include the appointment of the Chief Justice of India, Supreme Court and state High Court judges, state governors, election commissioners, and ambassadors to foreign nations.

Limitation On The Power Of The President

  1. Despite these capabilities, the President’s authority is limited. He is only authorised to use all of his powers on the recommendation of the Council of Ministers.
  2. The President may request that the Council of Ministers rethink its recommendation.
  3. However, if the same advice is offered again, the President is obligated to follow it.
  4. Similarly, a bill approved by Parliament does not become law until it receives the President’s assent.

The Judiciary

  1. The term “Judiciary” refers to an institution charged with the responsibility of administering justice and providing a forum for the settlement of legal issues.
  2. The Indian judiciary is composed of a Supreme Court that oversees the whole country, state-level High Courts and Subordinate Courts, district courts and municipal courts, and Lok Adalats.
  3. India has a single or integrated judiciary. This implies that the Supreme Court has complete power over the country’s judicial system. Its judgments are final and binding in all other courts across the nation.

Independence Of Judiciary

The judiciary is not subject to legislative or executive influence. The judges do not act on the government’s instruction or in line with the political party in power.

Powers Of The Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has the authority to consider any case

  1. between governments at the Union and state level
  2. between citizens and government
  3. between two or more State Governments
  4. between citizens of the country

Role Of The Supreme Court And The High Courts

The Supreme Court and High Courts have the authority to interpret the country’s Constitution. They have the authority to declare illegal any legislative act or executive action, whether at the federal or state level if they believe the act or action violates the Constitution.

They have the authority to judge the constitutional validity of any legislation or governmental action in the nation that is brought before them. This is referred to as judicial review.

Additionally, the Supreme Court of India has decided that Parliament cannot alter the Constitution’s core or basic values.

Appointment Of Judges Of Supreme Court And High Courts

The President appoints judges to the Supreme Court and High Courts on the suggestion of the Prime Minister and in collaboration with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

The senior justices of the Supreme Court appoint new Supreme Court and High Court judges. Typically, the Chief Justice is appointed by the Supreme Court’s senior-most justice.

Removal Of A Judge Of Supreme Court And High Court

Once a person is appointed to the Supreme Court or the High Court, removing him or her from that post is practically difficult.

A judge may be dismissed only on the basis of an impeachment resolution approved separately by two-thirds of the members of Parliament’s two chambers. This has never occurred in India’s democratic history.

Judiciary As A Highest Authority

The court in India has the authority and independence to serve as a guardian of Fundamental Rights. Anyone may bring a case to the courts if the government’s actions harm the public interest. This kind of litigation is referred to as Public Interest Litigation (PIL).

The courts intervene to prevent the government from abusing its decision-making power. They keep an eye out for public officials who commit crimes. As a result, the judiciary has significant public trust.


NCERT questions & answers from Working of Institutions

If you are elected as the President of India which of the following decision can you take on your own?
(a) Select the person you like as Prime Minister.
(b) Dismiss a Prime Minister who has a majority in the Lok Sabha.
(c) Ask for reconsideration of a bill passed by both the Houses.
(d) Nominate the leaders of your choice to the Council of Ministers.

Answer: (c) Ask for reconsideration of a bill passed by both the Houses.

Who among the following is a part of the political executive?
(a) District Collector
(b) Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
(c) Home Minister
(d) Director General of Police

Answer: (c) Home Minister

Match the ministry with the news that the ministry may have released:

(a) A new policy is being made to increase the jute exports from the country.(i) Ministry of Defence
(b) Telephone services will be made more accessible to rural areas.(ii) Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Public Distribution
(c) The price of rice and wheat sold under the Public Distribution System will go down.(iii) Ministry of Health
(d) A pulse polio campaign will be launched.(iv) Ministry of Commerce and Industry
(e) The allowances of the soldiers posted on high altitudes will be increased.(v) Ministry of Communications and Information Technology

Answer: (a)—(iv), (b)—(v), (c)—(ii), (d)—(iii), (e)—(i)

Of all the institutions we have studied in this chapter, name the one that exercises the powers on each of the following matters.
(a) Decision on allocation of money for developing infrastructure like roads, irrigation etc. and different welfare activities for the citizens
(b) Considers the recommendation of a Committee on a law to regulate the stock exchange
(c) Decides on a legal dispute between two state governments
(d) Implements the decision to provide relief for the victims of an earthquake


(a) The prime minister and the Council of Minister

(b) The Parliament

(c) Supreme Court of India

(d) The Civil Servants working together.

Why is the Prime Minister in India not directly elected by the people? Choose the most appropriate answer and give reasons for your choice.
(a) In a Parliamentary democracy only the leader of the majority party in the Lok Sabha can become the Prime Minister.
(b) Lok Sabha can remove the Prime Minister and the Council of Ministers even before the expiry of their term.
(c) Since the Prime Minister is appointed by the President there is no need for it.
(d) Direct election of the Prime Minister will involve a lot of expenditure on elections.

Answer: (a) Elections are not contested for the Prime Minister’s position. Only parties contest elections, and the head of the dominant party becomes Prime Minister. In a Parliamentary democracy, the Prime Ministership is reserved for the leader of the majority party in the Lok Sabha.

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