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The Council of Ministers vs the Cabinet (in Hindi)
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This lesson talks about the difference between the council of ministers and Cabinet. It talks about the kitchen cabinet which is present as an extra constitutional body in the cabinet and influencing the decisions of the government.

Ashna Sisodia is teaching live on Unacademy Plus

Ashna Sisodia
PSIR Optional Faculty, having scored 125+ in the prelims and 140 in Essay Paper and 110+ each in GS Papers in the UPSC Mains 2017.

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Unacademy user
  1. Course: The Union (Part V Lesson: Council of Ministers Presented by : Ashna Sisodia


  2. Council of Ministers vs Cabinet . The words 'council of ministers' and 'cabinet' are often used interchangeably though there is a definite distinction between them Council of ministers 1. It is a wider body consisting of 60 to 70 ministers 2. It inchides all the three categories of ministers, that is, cabinet Cabinet 1. It is a smaller body consisting of 15 to 20 ministers. 2. It inc hides the cabinet ministers only. Thus, it is a part of ministers, ministers of state, and deputy ministers the council of ministers. 3. 3. It does not meet, as a body, to transact gov-ernment business. It has no collective funct-ions. It meets, as a body, frequently and usualy once in a week to debberate and take decisions regarding the transaction of government business. business. Tmis, it has collective functions. 4. It is vested with all powers but in theory 5. Its functions are determined by the cabinet. 6. It implements the decisions taken by the cabinet. 4. It exercises, in practice, the powers of the co-uncil of 5. It directs the council of ministers by taking poicy 6. It supervises the implementation of its decisions by the ministers and thus, acts for the latter decisions which are bindng on all ministers council of mmisters.


  3. Council of Ministers VS Cabinet 7. It is a constitutional body, dealt in detail by the Articles 74 and 75 7. It was inserted in Article 352 of the Constitution in 1978 of the Constitution. Its size and classification are, however, not mentioned in the Constitution Its size is detemined by the prime minister according to the exigencies of the time and requirements of the situation. Its classification into a three-tier body is based on tha it is the council consisting of the prime minister and the conventions of parlamentary govemment as developed in Britain It has, however, got a legislative sanction. Tis, the Salaries and Allowances Act of 1952 defnes a minister' as a member of the councl of ministers, by whatever name called, andis based on the conventions of parliamentary govemment inchudes a deputy minister by the 44th Constitutional Amendment Act Thus, it did not find a place in the original text of the Constitution Now also, Article 352 only defines the cabinet saying other ministers of cabinet rank appointed under Article 75' and does not describe its powers and fiunctions. In other words, its role in our politico-administrative system as developed in Britain. 8. It is collectively responsible to the Lower House of the Parliament. . It enforces the collective responsibility of the council of ministers to the Lower House of Parliament


  4. Role of Cabinet 1. It is the highest decision-making authority in our politico-administrative system 2. It is the chief policy formulating body of the Central government. 3. It is the supreme executive authority of the Central government. 3i theseormulating body of t .4. It is chief coordinator of Central administration. 5. It is an advisory body to the president and its advice is binding on him 6. It is the chief crisis manager and thus deals with all emergency situations. 7. It deals with all major legislative and financial matters. 8. It exercises control over higher appointments like constitutional authorities and senior secretariat administrators. 9. It deals with all foreign policies and foreign affairs.


  5. Kitchen cabinet The cabinet, a small body consisting of the prime minister as its head and some 15 to 20 most important ministers, is the highest decision-making body in the formal sense. However, a still smaller body called the 'inner Cabinet' or 'Kitchen Cabinet' has become the real centre of power. This informal body consists of the Prime Minister and two to four influential colleagues in whom he has faith and with whom he can discuss every problem . It advises the prime minister on important political and administrative issues and assists him in making crucial decisions. It is composed of not only cabinet ministers but also outsiders like friends and family members of the prime minister.


  6. Kitchen Cabinet The prime ministers have resorted to the device of 'inner cabinet' (extra-constitutional body) due to its merits, namely: 1. It being a small unit, is much more efficient decision-making body than a large cabinet. 2. It can meet more often and deal with business much more expeditiously than the large cabinet. . .3. It helps the Prime Minister in maintaining secrecy in making decisions on important political issues However, it has many demerits also. 1. It reduces the authority and status of the cabinet as the highest decision-making body. 2. It circumvents the legal process by allowing outside persons to play an influential role in the government functioning. .