Constitution of India for Dummies.

Indian Constitution is  the Longest Constitution in the World obvious from the fact that we are so diverse and it had to be longest one.

Indian Constitution begins with Preamble to the Indian Constitution, it is considered to be one of the most finely worded Preambles in the world.

Constitution has been divided into XXII parts ( Please note that, parts have to be written always in Roman numbers.)

As shown above each Part is further divided into Articles (written in decimal numbers), and articles into clauses (written in brackets) and sub-clauses. (written in small alphabets).

Example: Part III, Article 22 (3) (c)  read as Part three, article 22 clause 3 and sub-clause c.

Articles could define some rules and regulations,  while the clauses and sub-clauses can be seen as individual explanation to these articles or sometimes an extension to these articles or sometimes gives exceptions to the rule or regulation given in article.

These collectively provide some provisions. Based on these provisions there are Twelve Schedules List at the end of the Indian Constitution. (Please note, the schedules have to be written in words, like FIRST, SECOND, THIRD etc while you’re addressing any schedule.)

The Schedules provide detailed data as mentioned in the article on which such a schedule is based. In other words Schedules are lists in the Constitution that categorize and tabulate bureaucratic activity and policy of the Government.  All the three i.e., Parts, Articles & Schedules are interlinked to each other.

Key note: The constitution is not final document in itself, it keeps evolving. During the time of enactment, the Constitution had 395 articles and eight schedules.

There may arise a need to change certain provisions, or introduce certain new provisions, or remove certain provisions from the Constitution. The process of making changes to the Constitution is called Amendment to the Constitution.

The procedure of amendment in the constitution is explained in  Part XX (Article 368) of the Constitution of India and this procedure ensures that constitution of India can’t be changed arbitrarily on ones will and wish.

Further, through all these Parts, Articles, Clauses, Schedules, Amendments, what our constitution strives to achieve are these- in a broad sense.

  1. Supremacy of the Constitution: No politician or bureaucrat or executive can perform actions outside the ambit of constitution, they all should strive to upheld the supremacy of our constitution.
  2. Rule of law: That no one is above the law of  the land, and every one shall be treated equally before the law.
  3. The principle of Separation of Powers: The concentration of powers is not vested at one place, the three wings that is Legislature, Executive and Judiciary have powers over each other to control their actions.
  4. The objectives specified in the Preamble to the Constitution: The Constitution has the articles written to upheld the principles included in the Preamble to our constitution.
  5. Judicial Review: That is, the legislation made by Parliament is not final, and can be scrutinized and declared unconstitutional and void by the Supreme Court if bought to its notice.
  6. Federalism: Not truly federal as the United States of America but we are a Union of States, with stronger Central Govt. More or less looks like in the below image. While the centre can’t command certain things to state, and similarly  State need not consult Centre to make laws related to its subjects.
  7. Fundamental Rights:
  8. Unity and integrity of the Nation
  9. The balance between Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles: The Directive Principles of State Policy are the guiding principles to states and centre which are to be followed while making a policy.
  10. The Parliamentary system of government
  11. The principle of free and fair elections
  12. Independence of the Judiciary: Judiciary in India is independent , as in it is not subordinate any of the other wing of power, and it shall be upheld through the constitution.

Indian Judiciary could be more or less seen as below.

Bonus Fact: The Constituent Assembly had 11 sessions over 2 yrs, 11 months and 18 days.
The Constitution makers choose to go through the constitutions of about 60 countries and also the Draft Constitution was considered for 114 days.
The entire expenditure incurred for making the Constitution amounted to 64 lakh.

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