In this article, we will discuss the Basics of Constitution in a simple and easy way and understand the answers to all the important questions related to it, so definitely read this article till the end.
We have prepared an eBook on the Basics of Constitution, in which all the important topics have been included in order to understand the Indian Constitution. You can download it for free from the link given below;
| What is constitution?
Constitution means “Supreme Legislation”; That is, such a legislation which is so superior that it compels a person, society or institution to have faith in it or presents proper arguments.
Broadly speaking, it is a document that clarifies the relationship between ‘person’ and ‘state’. How?
In a democratic country, a person is a symbol of freedom, or rather, the very concept of democracy rests on the fact that the person remains free.
On the other hand, the state is a symbol of power, that is, the state has all the necessary powers to run the country.
In such a situation, the states should not misuse their powers and individuals should not misuse their freedom, the documents which are made to establish balance in both of them, that is the constitution.
| Why does a country need a constitution at all?
As we talked above, the constitution is the best law, in such a way every country (be it a democracy or not) would like to list such a law so that whatever the country or nation may be, it continues to run.
For example, if we take the Taliban of Afghanistan, they want to run the country according to the Sharia law, that is, we can understand that they follow the constitution of their country only according to that Sharia law.
Overall, the meaning of saying here is that countries which have a constitution are not necessarily democratic countries, for example you can take some Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia, Iran etc. Iran is a theocracy-based country, which has incorporated some democratic values within itself, but it has a constitution.
This is where the concept of constitution and constitutionalism comes in, let us understand what is this.
| Like we took the example of Afghanistan above where Taliban is ruling. Whose constitution is Sharia or Shariat. Here the handful of people who are handling the governance use unrestricted powers while on the other hand there are many restrictions on the public.
The meaning of saying is that not all the people of that country run according to the constitution, but some people are above that who can give shape to the constitution according to their convenience. This situation can be said that there is a constitution but there is no constitutionalism. In other words, it can be said that there is no living constitution.
Remember here that the constitution may or may not be codified. Codified constitution means the inclusion of all the constitutional provisions in a single document.
Barring a few countries, most of the countries in the world have a codified constitution such as India, Brazil, France, America etc…. There are some countries which are a democracy but there is no codified constitution like United Kingdom, New Zealand, Israel etc.
After understanding this, now if we understand why a country needs a constitution, then overall a country needs a constitution;
⚫ Because the constitution lists those ideals or basic rules on the basis of which the citizen can create his country according to his wish and need. how so?
We have some personal, family or social aspirations that I wish! Things used to be like this. Like if we think that I wish! Socio-economic inequality would have completely disappeared. Obviously we can achieve this by including such a system in the constitution.
A country needs a constitution;
Because the constitution makes it clear who will have the decision making power in the society and how the government will be formed. That is, in other words, the constitution decides the political system of the country.
Here political system means the formal system to get rid of our common problems or basic problems and ensure our development.
A country needs a constitution;
Because the constitution draws a Lakshman Rekha for the individual and the state so that both always know that we have to live within it. In other words, the Constitution protects us from ourselves. Why so?
This is because it is human nature to be free from bondage, but such a personal decision can sometimes prove to be fatal for the society or for himself, in which case the constitution forces us not to do such things.
You will understand this thing even better when you understand the fundamental rights. You will understand that of course it is our nature to be free from bondages, but rational bondage is our need.
A country needs a constitution;
Because the constitution protects the interests of the minorities and the weaker and backward sections of the society. It does this by curbing the tyranny of inter-community domination and intra-community domination.
[Note – Here inter-community domination means one community to run another community on its own, while intra-community domination means the attempt by some socio-economically capable people within the same community to run other people.]
Q. Why should the common man read the constitution?
Generally our general impression is that reading constitution is the work of political science students but since we live in a country with a constitutional system where our decision is influenced by it then we must read about it and what benefits will it give us Let us know;
- We get to know the structure of the state and the division of powers-
We come to know that our state is divided into three vertical segments which we call centre, state and local self-governance. And the division of powers among them is in such a way that the center is seen in the role of the head of the family and the rest in the role of family members who have enough power to take decisions.
- We get to know the nature of government and its organs-
We understand that our government is based on parliamentary system of governance, we understand that what we call government is actually nothing but legislature + executive + judiciary.
- We get knowledge of our rights and duties-
We understand how many rights we get as a citizen of a democratic country. With the help of which we are not only able to make our all-round development, but also we are able to build a better society.
[Note – All-round development refers to such development in which we are physical, social, mental and moral; develop in all areas.]
After reading so much, it is expected that a base would have been prepared in your mind regarding the constitution. Now let us understand that what is the specialty of the Indian Constitution?
| Features of the Indian Constitution
After understanding so much about the constitution, it becomes necessary for us to know what makes the Indian constitution special. There are many such things that make the Indian Constitution special, but the most important of them and which covers almost all the basic things in itself are these three feature :-
- Parliamentary system
- fundamental rights
| Federalism – Federalism, that is, a mixed form of government within a single political system where there is a central government and several provincial governments and the division of powers of both is done in such a way that both can take decisions independently. and be able to implement it.
Read the given article to understand what it means in relation to India – Federal System of India
| Parliamentary System of Govt. – Parliamentary system, that is, a system whose center is the Parliament. In other words, in this system the executive is responsible to the legislature for its policies and actions.
Read the given article to understand them in detail – Basics of Parliament
| Fundamental Rights – Basically 7 fundamental rights were given in the constitution as you can see below. But here one thing is worth remembering that right to property has been removed by 44th constitutional amendment 1978. That’s why now there are only 6 fundamental rights.
|Right to Equality, Articles 14 – 18|
Right to Freedom, Articles 19 – 22
Right against exploitation, Article 23 – 24
Right to Freedom of Religion, Articles 25 – 28
Right to education and culture, Article 29 – 30
❌ 6. Right to Property – Article 31
Right to Constitutional Remedies, Article 32
Read the given article to understand all these rights in detail – Fundamental Rights in India
Q. What is Constitution, Legislation/Law/Act, Rules and regulations?
As we have known so far, the constitution was prepared by the Constituent Assembly. That is, the constitution has been made, the parliament cannot make it again. What Parliament can make is law or legislation or act.
In other words, the Constitution guides the Parliament as to what it can and cannot make. That is, whatever the Parliament makes, it should be according to the constitution.
Once the law or legislation or act is made, then some law is again needed to implement it, which is not as comprehensive as the law made by the parliament, but it is very important in terms of implementation. .
In other words, just as the law has to be in accordance with the constitution, in the same way the rules have to be in accordance with the law. That is, the rule is a thing below the law.
And even below that or sometimes almost equivalent to that, the smaller laws that are made are called regulations.
Q. What all is included in the constitution?
Usually, for us, the Constitution is just that book which has the Preamble, 395 Articles and 12 Schedules. But the constitution is not just that much, then what is it, you can understand it from this equation;
Constitution = Book of the Constitution + Decisions of the Supreme Court + Constitutional Amendment + Legal Commentary or Commentary written by scholars to make the intricacies of the Constitution universal + Convention or tradition of the Constitution.
Note – The decision of the Supreme Court means those decisions which interpret the constitution. Like the decision given on amendment of fundamental rights in Kesavananda Bharti case.
Constitutional amendment means an addition or subtraction made by the Parliament to the constitution.
Legal commentary is an extended and simplified format of the constitution itself.
Convention or tradition refers to those things which are not written anywhere, yet the followers of the constitution follow them.
Q. How many articles, how many parts and how many schedules are there in the constitution?
The Constitution of India has the status of being the longest constitution in the world, which is also correct because it has a total of 395 articles which are divided into 22 parts. Also there are 12 schedules which was originally 8.
Still, we get to read at many places that the number of articles has increased to more than 450 and the constitution has also increased from 22 to 25.
This is also true in a way, because the constitution has been amended more than 100 times in the last more than 75 years. And many more things have been added and subtracted.
For example, Part 7 was abolished and some new parts – Part 4A, Part 9A, Part 9B and Part 9C were added. If seen from this point of view, there are 25 parts of the constitution.
But the thing to be kept in mind here is that finally there are only 395 articles in the constitution and it is divided into 22 parts because all the changes that have taken place have happened in between, some new part (Part 23) or some The new article (Article 396) has not been added. Yes the schedules have definitely increased which was earlier 8 but now it is 12.
Now the question comes that what are the things in which part of the constitution i.e. if we open the constitution then what all will we get to read or know and from which part and article? So you can refer to this chart for the same, it will give you a clear idea of what comes under which section.
A brief picture of the Indian Constitution
|part of cons.||description||no. of article|
|1||union and its territory||from 1 to 4|
|2||citizenship||from 5 to 11|
Part 1 – In this part of the constitution, we can read about the details of India, like what is India , who can add new states in India and who can change the boundaries etc.
Part 2 -In this part of the constitution, we know about who got citizenship and who could get it at the time of implementation of the constitution.
|3||Fundamental Rights||from 12 to 35|
This part of the constitution is about fundamental rights. We have also discussed it briefly above.
|4||Directive Principles of State Policy||35 to 51|
In this part of the Constitution, Directive Principles of State Policy has been discussed, that is, those elements which should be included in the policies of the State ;
This part of the constitution was not a part of the original constitution but it was made a part of the constitution by the 42nd constitutional amendment in 1976. This part is about the fundamental duties of the citizens of the country.
|5||Central government||from 52 to 151|
There are 5 chapters in this part. We read about the different components of the Union Government in different chapters.
chapter 1 we read about the executive which comes from articles 52 to 78 . In this we read about the President, Vice President, Prime Minister, Council of Ministers and Attorney General.
Chapter 2 we read about Parliament , which comes from Articles 79 to 122 . Under which Lok Sabha , Rajya Sabha and its various provisions are read.
Chapter 3 we read about the legislative powers of the President i.e. ordinance making power which comes under Article 123 .
Chapter 4 we read about the Federal Court i.e. the Supreme Court which comes from Articles 124 to 147 .
Chapter 5 we Comptroller and Auditor General ( CAG) Let’s read about which comes from article 148 to 151 .
|6||State government||from 152 to 237|
This part of the constitution is divided into 6 chapters which deal with the state government. That is, Governor , Chief Minister , State Council of Ministers , Advocate General and High Court.
Definition is given in Chapter 1 which comes under Article 152 . Since Jammu and Kashmir was not like the common states, that is why it was written here.
chapter 2 we read about the executive which comes from articles 153 to 167 . In this we read about the Chief Minister , the Governor , the Council of Ministers and the Advocate General.
Chapter 3 we read about the State Legislature , which comes from Articles 168 to 212 . Under which Vidhansabha , Vidhan Parishad and its various provisions are read.
Chapter 4, we read about the legislative powers of the Governor, that is, the power to issue ordinances , which comes under Article 213 .
Chapter 5 , we read about the Courts of the States i.e. the High Court which comes from Articles 214 to 232 .
Chapter 6 we read about the Subordinate Court which comes from Articles 232 to 237 .
|7 (Repealed)||‘ B ‘ of the First Schedule relating to the State||238|
Actually now this part is not in existence, it was removed by 7th constitutional amendment 1956. Because by this amendment act a new arrangement was brought about the states.
|8||Union Territory||from 239 to 242|
In this part read the Union Territories and various provisions related to it. Like if you want to know about Delhi.
|9||Panchayats||243 From to 243 ‘O’|
In this part of the constitution, we get to know about the Panchayati Raj system. Such as Gram Sabha , Panchayat Samiti , Zilla Parishad and all the provisions related to it.
|9A||municipalities||243 P to 243 Z G|
In this part of the constitution, we come to know about the urban local self-government like Nagar Panchayat , Municipality , Municipal Corporation etc.
|9B||co-operative societies||243 ZH to 243 ZT|
In this part of the constitution, we read the cooperative society and various provisions related to it.
|10||Scheduled and Tribal Areas||244 to 244 ‘ K ‘|
deals with the administration of scheduled and tribal areas.
|11||Centre-State Relations||from 245 to 263|
In this part of the Constitution, we read about Centre-State relations , such as Centre-State Legislative Relations , Centre-State Administrative Relations and Inter-State Relations.
|12||Finance , Property , Contracts and Litigation||264 to 300 ‘ K ‘|
understand about different types of taxes , finance commission , exemption from tax , system of taking loan by Government of India or State Government etc.
|13||commerce and intercourse within the territory of India||from 301 to 307|
In this part of the constitution, we read about the freedom of trade and commerce etc. in the territory of India or the restrictions imposed on it.
|14||Services under Union and State||from 308 to 323|
In this part of the constitution, we mainly read about Union Public Service Commission and State Public Service Commission.
|14A||tribunal||323A to 323B|
This part of the constitution was not always a part of the constitution, it was added in 1976. Under this we read about Tribunals .
|15||election||324 to 329 ‘ A ‘|
In this part of the constitution, we read about the Election Commission and various provisions related to it.
|16||Special provision in respect of certain classes||from 330 to 342|
Many things come in this part of the constitution such as reservation of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Lok Sabha , nomination of Anglo-Indian (which was abolished in 2020) etc.
|17||official language||from 343 to 351|
read about the official language of the Union , the official language of the state , the official language of the Supreme Court etc.
|18||Emergency provision||from 352 to 360|
In this part of the constitution, we read in detail about National Emergency and President’s rule etc.
|19||Scattered||from 361 to 367|
In this part of the constitution we read about different provisions of different types. Such as the protection of the President and the governors , the effect of non-observance of the directions given by the Center by the states, etc.
In this part of the constitution, we read about the provisions related to amendment of the constitution.
|21||Temporary , Transitional and Special Arrangements||from 369 to 392|
The special provisions applicable to different states are discussed in separate articles in this part of the constitution.
|22||Short title , commencement , authorized text in Hindi and repeal||from 393 to 395|
Similarly, if we talk about the schedules, then the following things are read in the schedules.
schedule 1 , Schedule 1 is about the listing of states and union territories.
Schedule 2 – is about the salary and allowances of the people sitting on the government position. Especially about the President , Vice-President , Supreme Court Judge etc.
Schedule 3 – This schedule deals with statements to be made on oath by the President , Prime Minister , Judge of the Supreme Court, etc.
Schedule 4 – This schedule is about the allocation of seats in the Rajya Sabha.
Schedule 5 – This schedule is about the administration and control of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes etc.
Schedule 6 – deals with tribal administration in the states of Assam , Meghalaya , Tripura and Mizoram.
Schedule 7 – This schedule is about Union List , State List and Concurrent List.
Schedule 8 – This schedule is about the languages recognized by the constitution, in which there are currently 22 languages.
Schedule 9 – This schedule was created by the first constitutional amendment. Whatever subject is kept in it, the judicial review is usually not done by the court.
Schedule 10 – It was created by the 52nd Constitutional Amendment , it has provisions regarding disqualification related to defection .
Schedule 11 – It was created by the 73rd Constitutional Amendment, in this the executive subjects related to Panchayati Raj have been kept.
Schedule 12 – It was created by the 74th Constitutional Amendment , in this the executive subjects related to the municipality have been kept.
Q. Who was the first country to make the constitution ?
USA was the first country to have a constitution. It made its constitution on 21 June 1788 and adopted the path of federal republic.
Q. What things have been taken from which countries in the constitution of our country?
| America – • Fundamental Rights • Independence of Judiciary • Doctrine of Judicial Review • Office of the Vice President • Impeachment of the President.
| Canada – • Federal system with a strong center • Vesting of residuary powers in the center • Appointment of state governors by the center • Advisory adjudication by the Supreme Court.
| Britain – • Parliamentary Government • Rule of Law • Legislative Process • Single Citizenship • Cabinet System • Sovereignty Articles • Parliamentary Privileges • Bicameralism.
| Ireland – • Nomination of members to the Rajya Sabha • Directive Principles of State Policy • Method of election of the President.
| Australia – • Concurrent List • Freedom of trade, commerce and intercourse • Joint sitting of both houses.
| Government of India Act 1935 – • Federal machinery • Office of the Governor • Judiciary • Public Service Commission • Emergency Provisions.
Along with this, the basic duties were taken from Russia, the process of amending the constitution from South Africa and republican France.
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