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PCS (J) Notes: Constitutional Law, Preamble

 

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PREAMBLE

The Preamble demonstrate the source of Constitution in another words Sovereign will of the people and also states the great objects of the Constitution. It was also observed in the Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala (Case citation:(1973) 4 SCC 255) : “it is of ‘extreme’ importance that the Constitution should be read and interpreted in the light of the grand and noble vision expressed in the Preamble.”

Our Constitution in its Preamble proclaims that ‘We, the people of India having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a Sovereign, Socialist, Secular, Democratic Republic, and to secure all its citizens: Justice, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity and Unity and Integrity of the Nation, in our Constituent Assembly this 26th day of Nov. 1949, do hereby adopt, enact and give to ourselves this Constitution.

WE, THE PEAPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitution India into a [SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC] and to secure to all its citizens:

JUSTICE, social, economic and political;

LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;

EQUALITY of status and of opportunity;

and to promote among them all

FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the [unity and integrity of the Nation];

IN OUR CONSTITUTION ASSEMBLY this twenty-sixth day of November, 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION.

Objective of Preamble

Main objective is to Constitute India into a ‘Sovereign, Socialist, Secular Democratic Republic’.

  • Sovereign introduce to India’s International Status as a Sovereign State with Sovereignty within and without.
  • Socialist does not mean any ism, but means absence of any type of misuse.
  • Secular designate that all religions are equal. Notes, Socialist and secular had been inserted by the 42nd Amendment.
  • Democracy relates the way of life, to a system of government by discussion. It is a government by the people, of the and for the people.
  • Republic is a reference to the Executive Head that is the President who is elected. It is opposed to a hereditary office.

Basic Values of Preamble are-

  1. Justice: Social, Economic and Political.
  2. Liberty: Of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship.
  3. Equality: Of status and opportunity.
  4. Fraternity: Assuring the dignity of the Individual.
  5. Unity and Integrity of the Nation after 42nd Amendment.

Interpretation of the Preamble

The spirit of the Constitution is incorporated in the Preamble and it works as a guidance for the Constitution. Preamble plays an important role for Judges because of Preamble it become easy to interpret the Constitution.

  • According to Dyer C. J., the Preamble is “the key to open the minds of the makers of the Constitution”. The Supreme Court had held in The Berubari Union v. Unknown (Case citation: AIR 1960 SC 845, 1960 3 SCR 250) that the preamble was not a part of the Constitution, but this has been overruled in Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala (Case citation: (1973) 4 SCC 255). Therefore, the preamble is part of the Constitution and if the words in the body of the Constitution are capable of two meanings that is ambiguity and which fits into the preamble is preferred by the Courts.
  • If there are specific provisions in the Constitution, then they are not controlled by the Preamble (K. Gopalan v. State of Madras (Case citation: 1950 AIR 27, 1950 SCR 88).
  • The preamble is not a source of power. It cannot restrict a power given in the Constitution.
  • The preamble is part of the Constitution and may be amended under Art.368. But amendment should not affect the ‘basic structure’ of the Constitution (Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala (Case citation: (1973) 4 SCC 255).
  • The objectives enshrined in the preamble   contain the basic structure of the Constitution like the Supremacy of  the Constitution, Equality, Republican and democratic form of Government, Secular Character, Separation of powers ,Federal character etc

 

Submitted by- Supriti Bhargawa

 

 

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