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Constitution day

Date: 27 November 2020 Tags: Constitution

Issue

Constitution Day or Samvidhan Diwas is celebrated annually in India on 26 November. The day is also known as National Law Day. The day commemorates the adoption of the Constitution in India.

 

Background

On this day in 1949, the Constituent Assembly of India formally adopted the Constitution of India that came into force on 26 January 1950.

 

Details

  • The Constituent Assembly met for 166 days for two years, 11 months, and 18 days before the Constitution was finally adopted.

  • The members of the Constituent Assembly signed two hand-written copies of the document on 24 January 1950 and two days later, it became the law of the land.

  • The Constitution Day is celebrated as a mark of tribute to India's first Law Minister BR Ambedkar, who played a pivotal role in drafting the Indian Constitution.

 

Salient features of constitution

  • Single Constitution for both Union and States: India has a single Constitution for Union and all the States. 

  • Sources of the Constitution: The Indian Constitution has borrowed provisions from various countries and modified them to the suit the requirements of the country.

  • United Kingdom: Parliamentary government, post of Prime Minister, Single citizenship, bicameral legislature, privileges for parliamentary members, rule of law.
  • USA: Fundamental Rights, separation of judiciary, judicial review, post of vice-president, removal of President, removal of Supreme Court judges, preamble.
  • Canada: Quasi-federal, appointment of governors, distribution of powers between centre and state, residuary powers in centre.
  • Ireland:  Concept of Directive Principles of States Policy, method of election of President, nomination of members in the Rajya Sabha by the President.
  • USSR: Fundamental duties, Justice (Social, Economic, and Political).
  • Weimar (German): Suspension of Fundamental Rights during emergency.
  • South Africa: Elections to Rajya Sabha, joint sitting of the Parliament.
  • Australia: Concurrent list.
  • France: Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity.
  • Japan: Procedure established by the law.
  • Rigidity and Flexibility: The Constitution of India is neither rigid nor flexible. 

  • Secular State: The term secular state means that all the religions present in India get equal protection and support from the state. There is no state sponsored religion.

  • Federalism: The Constitution of India provides for the division of power between the Union and the State governments.

  • Single Citizenship: Constitution of India provides for single citizenship to every individual in the country.

  • Integrated and Independent Judiciary: The Constitution of India provides for an integrated and independent judicial system.

  • Universal Adult Franchise: In India, every citizen who is above the age of 18 years has the right to vote without any discrimination on the ground of caste, race, religion, sex, literacy etc.

  • Emergency Provisions: The President is empowered to take certain steps to tackle any extraordinary situation to maintain the sovereignty, security, unity, and integrity of the nation.

  • Directive Principles of State Policy: Part IV (Articles 36 to 50) of the Constitution mentions the Directive Principles of State Policy. These are non-justifiable in nature and are broadly classified into Socialistic, Gandhian, and Liberal-intellectual. 

  • Fundamental Duties: These were added to the Constitution by the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act (1976).

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