Executive acts as one of the important pillars of the government. An executive is that organ of the government which implements or enforces the laws which are passed through legislation by the legislatures. The Executive also implements the policies of the government. Due to the rise of welfare states, the functions of the executive have also increased. Commonly people identify the executive with the government. In recent times, an increase in the role and power of the executive has taken place.
An executive is the important organ of the government. Executive means the administration of state by all the functionaries such as political executives, civil servants, etc. in a narrow sense, executive means only the heads of executive such as the political executives that run different departments of the government and which implement the laws and policies of the government. In a narrow sense, the civil service is not included in the sense of executive. Political scientists used to accept the narrow sense but in modern times, the executive is used in a broader sense which includes both civil service and political executive.
Definition of Executive:
1: The organ of the state that embraces the totality of all the functionaries which are concerned with the will of the state and has been formulated in terms of the law.
2: The organ of the government that consists of all government officials except in legislation and judiciary. It consists of all the functionaries of government that are concerned with the will of the state formulated in terms of the law.
Parts of Executive:
There are mainly two parts of the executive:
1: The political Executive:
Political executives are selected for a term of five years. It includes the head of the state and the heads of several departments such as ministers. These people are elected representatives of the people and these people are responsible for their policies and actions before the people. Political executives’ changes after every election. So in that sense, they are temporary executives. After the completion of their tenures, they can again contest in elections and can again join ministry if their party wins a majority. The functions of ministers are to formulate policies and pass them through legislation. The laws and policies of the state are then implemented by the civil servants. Civil servants are under the control of political executives.
2: The permanent Executive:
These are non-political executives. The permanent executive comprised of civil servants from top rank to low rank. They work in the government departments. They are politically neutral and do not have any relation with any political party. They carry out the law and policies of the government and implement them. The civil servants are highly educated and well-mannered people. They are experts in their fields. The political executive decides on the information provided by them and also gives expert advice. The civil servants remain on the job till the age of retirement which is different in different countries such as 60 years etc. they get fixed salaries and are organized into positions based on meritocracy.
Kinds of Executive:
1: Nominal and Real Executive:
The nominal and real executive can only be differentiated in the parliamentary form of government. The council of misters which is headed by the prime minister is the real executive while the head such as the monarch or president acts as a nominal executive. The powers are practically exercised by the real executive which is legally the powers of the nominal executive. For the actions of the nominal executive, the real executive is responsible. The nominal is ceremonial while the reality is a powerful part of the executive.
2: Single and Plural Executive:
When a single person enjoys all the executive powers, then it is called a single executive. Single executive powers are exercised in several nations such as Turkey, the USA, Russia, etc. In these countries, the President enjoys single executive powers. On the other hand, plural executive means when the executive powers are enjoyed by groups or commissions, the council is said to be plural executive. In a plural executive, all the members enjoy the executive powers.
3: Hereditary and Elected Executive:
When the executive office is adopted through hereditary succession, it is called the hereditary executive. For example, in Britain Malaysia, the chief executive is made through hereditary succession. While on the other side, the elected executive is selected through elections for a fixed interval of time.
4: Parliamentary and Presidential Executive:
In parliamentary executive, the executive members are the members of the legislature and have a close relationship between them. The executive members are wholly responsible before the legislature in the parliamentary executive. They do not have fixed tenure and can be removed by the legislature. On the other side, in presidential executive, there exists a separation of powers between the executive and legislature. In a presidential executive, the executive is not responsible to the legislature and cannot dissolve or remove the other. For example, in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh there is a parliamentary executive while in the USA there is a Presidential executive.
What are the functions of the Executive?
As we know, the executive is the main organ of the government and has several functions.
1: To Enforce laws:
The main function of the executive is to enforce law and control law and order in a country. It is the responsibility of the executive to bring and punish the wrongdoers. The executive is responsible for the implementation and maintenance of law and order in a country. The executive organizes the police force for the maintenance of law and order.
The other important function of the executive is the making of appointments. For example, in many states, the chief executive made major appointments. In India, the judges of the supreme court, high courts, ambassadors, Governor are appointed by the President.
3: Treaty making:
It is the other important function of the executive to decide treaties to be signed with other nations. The treaty is signed by the executive. Many treaties also require the acceptance of legislatures and it is the function of the executive to have talked with the legislatures for the approval of the treaty. The executive negotiates treaties in the light of the principles of International law.
4: War and Peace functions:
One of the key functions of an executive is to maintain peace and protect national integrity. The executive organizes the military for the defense of the country and negotiates peace settlements after the war. The chief executive also acts as the supreme commander of the armed forces.
5: Foreign policymaking:
In recent times, it has become the key responsibility of the executive to make a friendly foreign policy of the state. Executive make certain goals and objectives and then made foreign policy according to that objective which is in the best interest of the state. The executive also appoints the ambassadors to other states.
The state carries out its objective by making friendly policies. It is the key function of the executive to make friendly policies for economic, social, and democratic developments. It is the responsibility of the executive to make short-term and long-term policies.
Executive plays a role in law-making. Primarily it is the responsibility of legislatures to make laws. Ministers are the executive of the government and they play an important role in law-making. They legislate laws and then sign them from the head of the state.
8: Financial Functions:
Executive also play a role in financial policies. It is the executive that imposes or low the taxes. The executive also makes a budget.
9: Granting honors:
The other function of the executive is to grant honors to those who have made tremendous services to the nation. They are granted titles for their services to the nation. Executive grant honors to the citizens that have made services to the society.
10: Semi-judicial Functions:
The executive has the function to appoint judges and grant pardons.
Frequently Asked Questions:
1: What Executive means?
Executive means the power which is vested in the individuals to regulate the functions of the government.
2: What is the main function of an executive?
The main function of the executive is to enforce and implement law and order in a country.
3: Who is an Executive member?
The Executive member is one in whom the power or authority is vested such as Prime Minister, President, and Minister, etc.
4: Who is the head of the Executive?
In the Parliamentary form of government, the head of the executive is the prime minister while in the presidential form of government, it is President.
5: Are police part of the executive branch?
The Federal law enforcement agencies act as an integral part of the executive branch.