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The Finance Commission (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act,1951

The Finance Commission (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act,1951 was enacted on 16.05.1951. It has been established under Article 280 of our Constitution. This Commission is setup primarily to initiate financial relationship between the Central Government and State Government on revenues distributions that are earned through various sources. Initially there were several problems between State Government and Central Government on their disproportionate distribution of revenues, assignment of works and availabilities of resources. These problems get relaxed through the enactment of this Act.

This Act deals with the qualifications and disqualifications of members, who are eligibility to render service on salary and their powers under this financial commission. This Commission was formed under the pursuance of the President of India. This Commission should consist of a Chairman and four other members with high financial, economical and administrative skills to perform their effective duties under this Act. This Commission will make recommendations on distribution of tax revenues and their allocation of shares of proceeds to the States respectively. This Commission also recommends Government on granting aid to its state. Likewise this Commission recommends all necessary things that fulfills the purpose of this Act.

The Chairman is selected among public servant having experience in public affairs. Another four members shall be appointed to constitute a Commission. Those four members should be a person qualified as Judge of High Court or have efficient knowledge on finance and accounts of the Government or have a vast knowledge in the financial matters and administration or have a proficient knowledge on economics. The President at her self interest can disqualify any members of the commission. The president may also satisfy by the character of the person who might be appointed as a member of the Commission inorder to prevent unnecessary pollution in the commission. The President can also demand for the particulars from the members if it deems necessary to check the performance in the commission.

Members of the Commission may be disqualified before or after he is appointed as a member. People with unsound mind were not allowed to hold the office. Similarly, Any person being an insolvent, failed to pay his or her debt shall not be appreciated as a member of the Commission. A criminal cannot hold office inside the commission, i.e a person who is convicted once is not permitted to hold office. Any member having any interest in office that affecting the morality of the Commission will get disqualified from office.

Members can hold office to the period that is prescribed by President while appointing him. It will be specified in the appointment order of such members. Any member can get re-appointed if he has given his resignation letter addressing the President earlier. members can hold office as a part timer or a full timer as specified in the order given by the President. Salaries, fees, etc, will be paid accordingly as specified with all necessary allowances as Central Government by rules notified in the Official Gazette.

The Commission can setup its own rules and procedures to perform. It shall have all similar powers of that of Civil Procedure Code, 1908. It can summon the attendance of witnesses who are within the territory of India and can order to produce the relevant documents. It has the power to get relevant documents from court office or public records. The Commission can obtain any information, any documents from anybody if it is relevant and deems fit and such authorities or concerns are bound to disclose such information required unless it is barred by any provisions of the Act. This Commission acts as a Court to provide justice to the aggrieved person or to perform its function smoothly.

The Commission under this Act gains more importance between Central Government and State Governments for proper distribution of fund flows and work flows. It is a paramount necessary to appoint qualified and educated members in the Commissions. There were several States having non qualified members who really fail to perform their graceful duties under such Commission. This has to be sorted out as soon as possible for proper utilization of fund flows to the projects done by State with public interest.

C.Srivenkatesh Prabhu