Blog by: Parveen Kaswan
“Constitution makers should be visionary of future, they should have conscious of present and a sensibility to the background that necessitates the constitution”
The constitution makers were harbinger of hopes and aspirations of people of India. Their magnum opus can be seen when they made a document which was based on both aspects – practical and Ideal considerations. Practical in the sense they made it according to the current prevailing needs and situations. People of India were fighting for freedom and rights from decades with high ideals, these ideals were so important for them that they considered them above every other motive.
The ideas like Republicanism, Secularism and Fundamental rights present their sensibility to the background of the struggle. The fundamental rights were given to all citizens for their all round development. They were fighting for freedom in different capabilities and in the struggle they dreamt of a Republic and Democratic nation. Our constitution is a wonderful document which took every good thing prevailing in different countries at that time, and transformed according to the sociopolitical conditions of our society. Some people call it a patchwork – though it is a patchwork of sort but a beautiful one. The parliamentary system of government was adopted given the simplicity and familiarity of it with Indian people. Which also provides an accountable government in a representative democracy though with an overlap of executives and legislatures (unlike United States where there is a clear separation).
They started with a socialist pattern where idea was to give emphasis on a welfare state – a state where all citizens can enjoy fruits of development equally. The current situation of that time necessitated the addition of special clauses like Article 370 and Privy purse – which were important for the larger integration of the country. A framework which was based on the division of powers yet which paves the way for a cooperative federalism. Constitution recognises the rights of minorities & the oppressed classes and provide the effective remedies – as for every right, there is a remedy; where there is no remedy, there is no right.
The sense of future made those constitution makers to make this document for a future citizenry – which gave it a dynamic and evolving nature. They made it both rigid and flexible so that future parliamentarians can change it according to the demand of society yet keeping its rigidity intact. Which was further emphasized by honorable Supreme Court in Keshvanand Bharati case in form of Basic Structure doctrine. The ruling was nothing but an interpretation of existing framework, so that basic character/structure should not be changed. This basic structure is the bedrock on which all other provisions are balanced.
The Directive Principle of State Policy is a wonderful example of their visions about the Indian future – when they left on future governments to implement these ideals based on the financial and social situations of the time. Yet they made them non-justiciable keeping in mind the future conditions and necessities of a state. They recommended DPSP as directives for the future governments for social and economic equality. Which we can see when Right to Education is finally realized after almost sixty years of independence – when state got requisite amount of resources.
Dr. Ambedkar summed up everything very correctly, “The working of a Constitution does not depend wholly upon the nature of the Constitution. The Constitution can provide only the organs of State such as the Legislature, the Executive and the Judiciary. The factors on which the working of those organs of the State depend are the people and the political parties they will set up as their instruments to carry out their wishes and their politics.”