Emergency Provisions in Indian Constitution

KNC501/KNC601 Constitution of India, Law and Engineering

Chapter 2: Indian Constitution

Unit 1

Unit 2

Unit 3

Unit 4

Unit 5


Emergency Provisions in Indian Constitution:

The Indian Constitution gives President the authority to declare three types of emergencies: national emergency, state emergency, and financial emergency. Emergency provisions in India are borrowed from Weimar Constitution of Germany.

Constitution of India envisages emergency of following three types:

    1. Article 352 – National emergency
    2. Article 356 – Emergency in state (president’s rule)
    3. Article 360 – Financial emergency

1. Article 352 – National Emergency

    • Under article 352, if the president is satisfied that there exists a grave situation, wherein the security of the country is threatened on the grounds of wars, external aggression or armed rebellion, he can proclaim emergency to that effect.
    • Emergency can be declared over the complete territory of India or any part thereof.
    • President can declare emergency only on the written advice of the cabinet
    • A special majority is required to approve an emergency resolution.
    • Once approved, emergency shall operate for a maximum period of not more than six months.
    • Lok Sabha has the power to disapprove the operation of national emergency at any time, if not less than 1/10th members of Lok Sabha in writing to the speaker, if house is in session, or to the president, then speaker or president as the case may be, shall convene a special session of Lok Sabha within 14 days and if such a resolution is passed, president shall revoke national emergency.

2. Article 356 – Emergency in State (President’s Rule)

    • On Executive – State government is dismissed and the executive power of the state is exercised by the centre.
    • On Legislature – State legislature does not function to legislate; state legislative assembly is either suspended or dissolved.
    • On Financial relation – There is no impact on the distribution of financial resources between centre and the state.

3. Article 360- Financial Emergency

Under article 360 – If the President is satisfied that a situation has arisen whereby the financial stability or credit of India or of any part of the territory thereof is threatened, he may by a Proclamation make a declaration to that effect. This emergency is never imposed in India.

Author – Dilip Kumar Rawat

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