7th Schedule of Indian Constitution
The 7th Schedule of the Indian Constitution has three lists named Union list, state list, and concurrent list that show the division of power between the Union and States concerning certain subjects. The Union List has a total of 97 subjects, the State List has 66 subjects, and the Concurrent List has 47 Subjects.
Before we learn about the subject included in these three lists, let's first look at the key features of union, state, and concurrent lists.
The following are the features of the union list:
- The central government or the union government can make laws on all the subjects mentioned under the union list in the Indian Constitution.
- The union list is considered stronger and more powerful as it has more subjects than the state list.
- It has many important subjects apart from those mentioned in the concurrent list.
- All the issues or subjects related to the nation's security, the nation's welfare, and the uniform legislation throughout the country are secured by India's constitution and included in the union list.
- The union list is always considered dominant to the state list, and it is taken care of by the constitution of India in case any subject overlaps with each other. The judgment made by the union will prevail.
- It is possible for the Parliament to confer power and impose duties Upon a state through the law made on a subject of the union list or to authorize the centre to conform power and impose duties on a state.
- The union list has 15 specific subjects on which the Parliament can exercise power to levy taxes.
- A new subject named taxes on services was added to the union list by the 88th amendment.
- The Parliament has got the power to expand the jurisdiction and powers of the Supreme Court concerning the matters subjected to the union list.
The following are the features of the state list:
- The 42nd amendment act 1976 was made where five subjects were descended from the state list to the concurrent list. These five subjects are the administration of justice, constitution, and organization of all the courts, except the supreme court and the high court, Education, Forests, Protection of Birds and Wildlife, Weights and Measures.
- Under the Indian Constitution, only state legislatures can pass the laws on the subject listed under the state. Nevertheless, all of these can only be achieved under normal circumstances.
- The subject enumerated in the state list can be legislated on by parliament in the national interest under article 249.
- The parliament is also authorized to overpower the legislation making of the state list under 3 main conditions, i.e., if the Rajya Sabha passes any resolution, On the imposition of article 250, i.e., the national emergency, If two or more states pass the resolution, the parliament can legislate the subjects in the state lists.
A law made under the resolution of states applies to the state that passed such a resolution. It can be adopted by other states if they pass the same resolution. Changing or repealing a law made by the parliament in response to a state resolution can only be done by Parliament and not by any States on their own, during the active president's rule and for implementing the international agreements.
- The issues related to the regional and local importance that allows the diversity of interest are mentioned in the state list.
- The state list has 20 specific subjects on which the Parliament can exercise power to levy taxes.
- There were special provisions relating to the national capital in the 69th Constitutional Amendment Act of 1991. Public order, police and land are the three subjects on the state list that the daily government cannot legislate for.
The following are the features of the concurrent list:
- Both the union and the state manage the concurrent list.
- Five subjects were added to the concurrent list after the 42nd amendment of 1976. These five subjects are the administration of justice, constitution, and organization of all the courts, except the supreme court and the high court, Education, Forests, Protection of Birds and Wildlife, Weights and Measures
- The concept of a concurrent list wasn't originally of India as it is adopted from the constitution of Australia.
- As the central and state governments are authorized to make laws on concurrent subjects, if any legislation classes between the state and Centre, then the law made by the central government can overrule the legislation by the State Government.
- The topics which are not very important but on which uniformity of legislation is required throughout the country are enlisted in the concurrent list.
- The Concurrent list has 03 specific subjects on which the Parliament and state can exercise power to levy taxes.
Subjects Covered Under Union, State, and Concurrent List
As of 1st November 2021, there were 97 subjects covered in the union list (now 100 subjects); in the state list, there were 66 subjects (now 61 subjects), and the concurrent list has 52 subjects (originally 47 subjects)
Union List Subjects
The union list under the 7th schedule originally had 97 subjects which have been revised to 100 subjects.
Subjects under Union List
Defence of India
Naval, military, and Air Force works
Arms, firearms, ammunition, and explosives
Atomic energy and mineral resources
Industries declared by Parliament by law
Central Bureau of Intelligence and Investigation
Preventive detention for reasons connected with defence or Foreign Affairs.
Foreign Affairs: related to Union and any foreign country
United Nation Organization
War and Peace
Citizenship, Naturalization and Aliens
Pilgrimages to places outside of India
Piracy and crime committed on higher seas
Highways declared by law made by parliament
Lighthouses, including the light ships and bacon
Maritime shipping and navigation
Reserve Bank of India
State List Subjects
The state list under the 7th schedule originally had 66 subjects which have been revised to 61 subjects.
Subjects under State List
Prisons, reformatories, and other institutions of the same nature
Public health and sanitation
Pilgrimages other than those outside of India
Relief of the disabled and unemployable
Burials and burial grounds, cremations, and cremation grounds.
Libraries, museums, and other similar institutions
Communication through roads, bridges, ferries, and other means of communication
Agriculture, including agricultural education and research
Pounds and prevention of cattle trespass
Water supplies, irrigation, canal, drainage, and embankments
Gas and gas works
Inns and innkeepers
Betting and gambling
Salaries and allowances of members of the Legislature of the state
State public services and state public service commission
Public Debt of the state
Taxes on Agriculture Income
Duties in respect of succession to agricultural land
Concurrent List Subjects
A total of 52 subjects are enumerated in the concurrent list.
Subjects under Concurrent List
Bankruptcy and insolvency
Trust and trustees
Evidence and oaths, recognition of laws, public acts and judicial proceedings.
Prevention of cruelty to animals
Economic and social planning
Charities and charitable trust
Protection of wild animals and birds
Commercial and industrial monopolies
Relief and rehabilitation of people displaced from their original place of residence
Adulteration of foodstuffs and Other goods
Trade unions and Industrial and Labour disputes
Shipping and navigation on inland waterways
Drugs and poisons
Legal Medical and other professions
Vital statistics, including registration of birth and death
Residuary Powers under the 7th Schedule
The Residuary powers refer to the exercising of jurisdiction on subjects that are not mentioned either in the state list or the concurrent list. The subjects like cyber laws, Information Technology, etc., are included in the residual list. Ideally, just topics are handled by the union government, and under article 248, the parliament can exercise its authority to decide such subjects.
Issues with the 7th Schedule Indian Constitution
- The first issue concerning the seven schedules in the Indian Constitution is that according to it, there should be separate powers for state and union where no one should interfere with each other. However, in Some matters, the Union has the leverage to extend its duration over some subjects mentioned in the state list.
- For example, if any law made by the state legislature is unacceptable to the Parliament or the central government, under article 254 Union has the right to void the law. In such cases, the law made by Parliament will prevail over the state.
- Any legislation not covered by the state list of the concurrent list must be passed by the parliament, which has the sole authority to make any laws about them under article 248.
- The parliament is solely authorized to make the laws about National interest in the state list under article 249.
- Several states have been arguing and demanding providing them with more authority in health restructuring the 7th schedule. The P.V. Rajamannar Committee was formed in 1969 and examined the relationship between the Centre and the states. Based on it, the committee made recommendations, demanding federalism at the centre and the autonomy of states.
- On some grounds, the state and union's roles are quite uncertain. For example, during the pandemic, the Union imposed a public curfew by invoking the Disaster Management Act 2005. In contrast, the states imposed the curfew by invoking the Epidemic Disease Act of 1897.
7th Schedule UPSC
The 7th schedule UPSC topic is an important article from the perspective of the UPSC Prelims exam. There are many acts along with the subjects mentioned in these three lists. For this, it is important to have a basic knowledge of Indian polity, which can be gained from NCERT books for UPSC and advanced preparation from reference books.
For better preparation and an idea of the type of questions being asked in the exam, one should follow the mock tests and UPSC previous year's question papers to keep themselves updated.
7th Schedule of Indian Constitution UPSC Questions
Question 1: Concerning the constitution of India, which of the pair is incorrectly matched? [UPSC Prelims 2004]
- Forests: Concurrent List
- Stock Exchange: Concurrent List
- Post Office Savings Bank: Union List
- Public Health: State List
Question 2: Which of the following subjects is under the union list in the 7th schedule of the Constitution of India? [UPSC Prelims 2011]
- Regulation of labour and safety in mines and oil fields
- Public health
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