Preamble and The Salient Features of The Constitution of India
The Constituent Assembly
- The Constitution of India was framed by the Constituent Assembly. The Assembly was constituted in 1946.The Constituent Assembly, following the partition of the country in 1947, consisted of 299 members as on 31st December 1947. Of these 229 members were elected by the provincial assemblies and the rest were nominated by the rulers of the princely states.
What is Princely States?
- Princely States During the British Rule there were about 560 areas which were not directly under the control of the British. These were Kingdoms or ‘Riyasats’ under Indian rulers or Princes. These were called ‘Princely States’. To name a few, Kashmir, Patiala, Hyderabad, Mysore, Baroda were some of the princely states.
Committees of Constituent Assembly
- The Constituent Assembly was chaired by the President of the Assembly Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected as the President of the Assembly. The Assembly worked with the help of a large number of committees and sub-committees. The committees were of two types : (a) relating to matters concerning with procedures, and (b) concerning important issues. In addition there was an Advisory Committee primarily advised from outside. The most important committee was the Drafting Committee. Dr. B.R. Ambedkar was the Chairman of the Drafting Committee. The task of the Committee was to prepare the draft of the Constitution. The Constitutent Assembly met for 166 days spread over a period of 2 years 11 months and 18 days.
- The consensus came in the form of the ‘Objectives Resolution’ moved by Jawahar Lal Nehru in the Constituent Assembly on December 17, 1946 which was almost unanimously adopted on January 22, 1947. In the light of these ‘Objectives’ the Assembly completed its task by November 26, 1949. The constitution was enforced with effect from January 26, 1950. From that day India became a Republic. Exactly twenty years before the first independence day was celebrated on Jan. 26, 1930 as decided by the Lahore session of the Congress on Dec. 31, 1929. Hence, January 26, 1950 was decided as the day to enforce the constitution.
- As you know that the Constitution of India commences with a Preamble. Let us find out what a ‘Preamble’ is. The Preamble is like an introduction or preface of a book. As an introduction, it is not a part of the contents but it explains the purposes and objectives with which the document has been written.