Functions of Modern State
The modern state is a welfare state and not just police state. The
state assumes greater roles by creating economic and social overheads, ensuring
stability both internally and externally, conserving resources for sustainable
development and so on.
The primary function of the Government is to protect the people
from external aggression and internal disorder. The government has to maintain
adequate police and military forces and render protective services.
Rendering justice and settlement of disputes are the concern of
the government. It should provide adequate judicial structure to render justice
to all classes of citizens.
The regulation and control of private enterprise fall under the purview of the modern State. Ownership of certain enterprises and operating them successfully are the responsibilities of the government.
It is the duty of the state to make provisions for education,
social security, social insurance, health and sanitation for the betterment of
the people in the country.
Modern States have to build the base for the economic development
of the country by creating social and economic infrastructure.
The Government has to administer fiscal policy and monetary policy
to achieve macro-economic goals.
During the process of growth of an economy, certain sections of
the society gain at the cost of others. The Government needs to intervene with
fiscal measures to redistribute income.
Concentration of economic power is another evil to be corrected by
the Government. So, the state intervenes through control of monopolies and
restrictive trade practices to curb concentration of economic power.
In fine, the state can play three kinds of roles.
i) As a producer of goods and services.
ii) As a supplier of public goods and social goods.
iii) As a regulator of the system.