The Cabinet is a small body of senior members of the party who are included in the Council of Ministers.
- Cabinet Ministers hold important portfolios and decide major policies of the government.
- The Cabinet is the nucleus of the administration as important decisions are taken by it. The policies formulated by the Cabinet Ministers have to be followed by other ministers.
- The Prime Minister selects the senior and the most trustworthy members of his party and advises the President to appoint them.
Term of the Office
- The Cabinet and the Prime Minister are directly responsible to the Lok Sabha and remain in office as long as they enjoy the support of majority members of the Parliament. If the Lok Sabha passes a vote of No-Confidence Motion against them, the Council of Ministers has to resign collectively.
- A Cabinet Minister has to take an oath of Office and of Secrecy—the ministers take an oath of neither revealing nor communicating information to any person.
- The salaries and allowances to the ministers are determined by the Parliament from time to time.
Powers and Functions of the Cabinet
- The Cabinet formulates and decides the domestic and international policies of the government. It takes decisions on important matters such as defence, finances and foreign affairs. Individual ministers have to consult the Cabinet on all important matters.
- After a decision is taken by the Cabinet Ministers, it is conveyed to the Ministers of State and the Deputy Ministers who implement the policies with the help of the bureaucracy.
- It coordinates the workings of several departments to implement the policies of the government.
- All important appointments made by the President are decided by the Cabinet under the leadership of the Prime Minister. Judges of the Supreme Court, High Courts, Governors (of the states), Chief Election Commissioner, ambassadors and other important dignitaries are appointed on the recommendations of the Cabinet.
- Most of the bills are introduced by the Cabinet in the Parliament. The bills introduced by the Cabinet are known as Official bills. The latter is given priority over Private bills.
- The Ministers along with the secretaries of the department answer various questions asked to them by the members of the Lok Sabha.
- The Cabinet Ministers play an important role in making amendments to the Constitution.
- The Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs, a cabinet ministry, decides the summoning of the Parliament. The Parliament is summoned on the name of the President.
- It prepares the President’s Special Address to the Parliament.
- It advices the President to issue Ordinances when the Parliament is not in session.
- The Finance Minister, the integral part of the Cabinet, prepares the Annual Budget which contains the estimates of the income and expenditure of a financial year.
- It regulates the expenditure of the government and can present demands for required grants and for raising necessary income through various legal means.
- A Money Bill can be introduced only in the Lok Sabha.
- Also Read Prime Minister and Council of Ministers
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