The Constitution of India comprises the entire body of laws that govern the country. It is divided into two sections namely legislative and judicial branch. The Constitution of India was framed by the Constituent Assembly in constitution dated August 15, 1950. It was approved by the Constituent assembly after the Second World War. The Constitution is a source of pride for all Indians because it upholds the traditions and unity of the nation.
The Constitution of India is the highest constitutional law of the country.
|Original text of the preamble|
|Ratified||26 November 1949; 71 years ago|
|Date effective||26 January 1950; 70 years ago|
|System||Federal Parliamentary Constitutional Republic|
|Branches||Three (Executive, Legislature and Judiciary)|
|Chambers||Two (Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha)|
|Executive||Prime minister-led cabinet responsible to the lower house of the parliament|
|Judiciary||Supreme court, high courts and district courts|
|Electoral college||Yes, for presidential and vice-presidential elections|
|Last amended||25 January 2020 (104th)|
|Citation||Constitution of India (PDF), 9 September 2020, archived from the original (PDF) on 29 September 2020|
|Location||Parliament House, New Delhi, India|
|Author(s)||B. R. Ambedkar
Chairman of the Drafting CommitteeBenegal Narsing Rau
Constitutional Advisor to the Constituent AssemblySurendra Nath Mukherjee
Chief Draftsman of the Constituent Assemblyand other members of Constituent Assembly
|Signatories||284 members of the Constituent Assembly|
|Supersedes||Government of India Act 1935
Indian Independence Act 1947
The Constitution of India
It lays down the basic framework, structure, processes, powers, and boundaries of government institutions, and set out the fundamental human rights, freedom, privileges, duties and guarantees of citizens. The Constitution of India is the source of law which governs the affairs of state and society. As the Constitution is the highest supreme law of the country, every law passed in the Constitution must be judiciously construed to accomplish its purpose. The federal system of government with various organs administering its affairs is embodied in the Constitution of India. There are various sections of the Constitution which are self-explanatory.
The constitution safeguards the fundamental rights of citizens by protecting them from unwarranted invasion of their rights. A well drafted Indian constitution ensures compliance with the rule of law and checks the excesses of power. However, the true worth of the Indian constitution lies in the enforcement of its directives, which act as a yardstick by which the constitution is evaluated.
Directives may prescribe the way the state shall administer its executive department, regulation of education, health care, defense, law and order, use of property and even natural resources.Every amendment to the constitution requires the approval of the legislature by a majority of the legislature members present and a majority of individuals representing the people at the election.
In normal cases, the constitution-makers seek the advice of Indira Gandhi, who is the leader of the party that rules the parliament. However, there have been some changes made to the procedure for submitting amendments in the past few years. Currently, a member of the legislature can propose an amendment in the lower house of parliament (house), which need not require the approval of the prime minister.
The president of India can also sign off for a particular amendment, if the two-thirds of the number of members of the house are present and agree to the proposition. An amendment to the constitution can be done in two ways: one is through a change of formula, and the second is through a change in the text of the document. With regard to the first option, the formula is altered so as to conform with the results of an election. This happens when an election is held for a specified body such as governor, chief minister, etc., and a new constitution is drafted to supersede the existing one.
Secondly, the constitution amendment process is done through a change in the text of the constitution. This is required when more than one member of the legislature wishes to put forward a proposition regarding a particular issue, which is not allowed under the constitution of India. The procedure is followed if a decision is taken to replace the existing constitution with a new constitution. For instance, when the constitution was revised in 1950, a member of the legislature was elected on the basis of universal suffrage, but wanted to include certain articles in the constitution.
After the Constituent Assembly, formed by the constitution amendment bill, was dissolved, the matter was again debated and a final decision was taken about the revision of the constitution. Subsequently, another Constituent Assembly was formed, which again conducted a general election and approved the revised constitution. At the same time, a Constituent Body for debating and voting on bills was also elected. These bodies have remained a feature of Indian politics ever since. One more change which occurred in the constitution of India is that the right of direct election of the president was introduced, by the legislature, to ensure the presence of an opposition leader in the presidential chair.
The drafting committee of the constitution made the ninth amendment to the constitution by means of a referendum, which was approved by the electorate in December, 2002. This amendment was incorporated in the constitution by a single majority, thereby upholding the spirit of the document. It also provided for separate Houses of Parliament for the Lok Pradesh (India) and the Delhi (India) assembly, the position of the governor, who is supposed to be elected by the legislature, was changed to be hereditary. The constitution also provided for freedom of religion and for the right of free speech, broadcasting, press, Internet and other fundamental rights. With these changes the constitution of India has become a beacon for humanity.
Indian Constitution Articles
Constitution of India- The Indian constitution consists of the federal structure and the constituent assemblies of the states. The constitution guarantees freedom to life, liberty, property, civil status and personal freedom of the citizens of India and guarantees the right to participate in elections for the holding of public offices. Besides, it also promises other rights to the citizens of India such as Right to own property, Right to pursue studies, Right to get marriage, divorce, death and birth certificates, etc. The constitution guarantees these rights to the people of India and was introduced by the Indian government during the freedom movement era.
The preamble contains various articles such as the declaration of the decision of the Constituent Assembly, the acceptance of the constitution by the legislature, acceptance by the supreme authority of the country and the accession of new states within India by becoming associated with one of the existing states.
The constitution has various clauses that are meant for ensuring that the basic interest of the citizens of India are protected and that their civil rights are protected. One of the basic clauses of the constitution of India is the word “unity”, which means the freedom of every citizen of India to practice, worship, propagate, administer, etc. his religion, belief, or political opinion without discrimination and to have the same educational qualification as others and to enjoy social and cultural privileges enjoyed by all the citizens of India.
In order to guarantee equal rights to women, the constitution of India amended the law of discrimination against women and gave them equal rights as men. Another important clause of the constitution of India is the freedom of citizens to profess and propagate religion, freely and peacefully.
Preamble of Indian Constitution
The preamble of the Indian Constitution refers to the foundation of the Constitution. This is also known as the introspective part of the constitution where the drafters took their decision to form a constitution for the country. Unlike the other sections that are not adopted by the constitution makers, the preamble has the approval of all the legislators and is looked upon as the main mode of validation of the constitution.
There are two articles that make up the preamble of the Indian constitution. These are the preamble of the declaration of the constitution and the preamble of the constitutional amendments. The first article addresses the right of every citizen to participate in the formulation of the constitution, which was later submitted to the referendum for approval at the general election. The second article is about the process for proposing changes to the constitution through the constituent assembly.
The preamble states that the constitution should bind all the citizens equally under the law and provides them with equal rights before the law and in the enjoyment of their privileges and immunities. This includes the right to change the existing Articles of the Constitution that may have been inconsistent with the dictates of the Constitution.
For instance, Article 368 which relates to punishment for crimes has been excluded from the constitution by the framers because it could result in discrimination on the basis of race, religion, caste or sex. The second article addresses the role of the constituent assembly with respect to approving the constitution and then incorporating it into the Constitution of India. All these topics have been covered in the brief introductory statement of the Indian constitution.
Constitution of India – The Fundamental Principles
This article is all about the features of Indian Constitution, which are being touted by the advocates of various constitutional parties as the best constitution ever made by the country. Since Indian Constitution is one of the greatest creations of independent India, all the lawyers and eminent personalities try to make this document more truthful and true to its words. Indian Constitution is a very vast subject.
To prepare for this same, one has to at least have an in depth knowledge of the basic features of Indian Constitution and its various provisions. The present era is marked by the presence of numerous new constitution and one cannot hope to understand the implications and future consequences of each and every one of them, if one tries to go through the documents with a fine toothed comb.
Moreover, it is not all about the drafting features of the constitution, rather, it is also worth remembering the rigidity which is embedded in it. One cannot believe that the federal government will tolerate any excessive rigidity in constitution making, which could in turn bring severe consequences on the country?
Many times we come across people, who are actually following the legalistic point of view and they are trying to include certain articles in the constitution, which are against the principles of federalism. For instance, while the federal government wants to protect the minorities in India and also to maintain the integrity of the federal boundaries, so too, the constitution does not allow inclusion of certain articles regarding minority issues, in the constitution making.
This makes a problematic situation for the federal government and the constitution makers. What will happen to the federal government and the constitution? Well, it seems like the fundamental principles of the constitution cannot be questioned or believed and any attempt to do so is simply anti-national and is against the ideals and principles of India.