CONSTITUITIONAL HISTORY OF INDIA

 


Before we begin, let us first understand how greater and deeper the meaning the word Constitution carries, as remarkably stated by Wade and Philips "A Constitution means a document having a special legal sanctity which sets out the frame-work and the principle functions of the organs of the Government of a State and declares the principles governing the operations of those organs" 

As rightly heard revolutions takes a lot of blood, sweat and of course sacrifices , so does our constitution did have a rich as well as giant history before it was even assembled which can be briefly categorized by the timelines,  


HISTORY 


INDIAN COUNCIL ACT, 1861- This was the foundation stone of the idea which talked about the importance of representative institutions and for the first time we saw the association of Indians within the frame of legislature works , the foremost important aspect of this act was the power it gave  to the Governor -General , whether it was about the value of his assent in any bill or about the power to veto any Bill and circumstantially had loopholes on it , and thus a new act was required.


THE INDIAN COUNCIL ACT, 1892- It cannot be denied that the act laid down the idea of representative institution, increased the members of both the councils and election systems were introduced , still it wasn't enough at all for the correct executions of the changes it developed , yet it delivered the keys to unlock the upcoming challenges of development and electoral visions. 


MORLEY MINTO REFORMS THE INDIAN COUNCIL ACT, 1909- An attempt to make a representative element known as Lord Morley, Secretary of State and the Viceroy, Lord Minto. It made the Councils capable for having the power to question and discuss the matters expressively but the value of voting was still not considered.


JOURNEY BEGINS 


It was on the day of 20th August in the year of 1917 where Edwin Montagu, Secretary of state of India gave declaration for the progressive realization of responsible government as an integral part of British India which is known as Montagu Declaration. It did also foreshadow the participation of Indians in the British Indian Administration.

GOVERNMENT OF INDIA ACT, 1919 , MONTAGU CHELMSFORD REFORM An idea of Self-Government being the reason for this act becoming the landmark in the founding of the constitution as well as the step which showed us the direction to the light of our independence. It promised India a responsible Government. It also proposed to set up Central Public Service Commission and numbers of Indians in Viceroy's Executive Council was increased by 1 to 3.

Dyarchy derived from the Greek word di-arche meaning double rule, in the provinces was introduced, unfortunately it failed and the promise of the responsible government was still missing.

President demanded further reforms, which lead the British Government to appoint a statutory commission which was headed by Sir John Simon henceforth known as Simon Commission. It published its first report in May, 1930.To discuss the necessaries three round table conference were held in London, timeline showed below, 


First Round Table Conference- 12th November,1930 to 19th January 1931

Second Round Table Conference-7th September 1931 to 1st December 1931

Third Round Table Conference- November 1932


 The first person to put forward his opinion on the making and need of a constituent assembly was given by M N ROY in the year of 1934.

On the basis of Round Table Conferences, Government of India Act 1935 was formulated,


GOVERNMENT OF INDIA ACT, 1935 

The Act provided the establishment of All India Federation

Abolished the Dyarchy at provincial and introduced it in the Centre levels 

Marked the beginning of the Provincial Autonomy

Federal Legislature with two houses that of Council of States and other being the Legislature Assembly

Provincial Government consist of a Governor and Council of States for the advisory functions

Provincial Legislature (BICAMERAL that is dual houses)

Distribution of Legislature power in between the Central and the Provinces

Establishment of Federal Court having original, appellate and advisory jurisdiction

Large number of people were having the value to vote now 


CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY


IN THE YEAR 1935 INC OFFICIALLY DEMANDED THE CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY


IN THE YEAR OF 1938, Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru demanded Indian Constitution to be created without any interference of the outsiders. 


THE DEMANDS WERE ACCEPTED IN THE YEAR OF 1940 BY THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT.


 CRIPPS MISSION- MARCH 1942, the mission proposed the draft which was failed due to the clause of Right to secede as it was majorly rejected by both INC and Muslim League. 

The country isn't independent and ready yet before even it happen the idea of separation was having nothing but retaliation.


 WORLD WAR CAME TO AN END- Viceroy declared to the elections to be held between Dec 1945- January 1946 for Central and Provincial legislatures.

The Elections were held in 11 provinces where the Congress won in 8 provinces.


CABINET MISSION MARCH 1946 HAVING,

Sir Pethik Lawrence

Sir Stafford Cripps

Sir A V Alexander


INDIRECT ELECTIONS TO BE CONDUCTED 


FIRSTLY,MEMBERS FROM PARTICULAR PROVINCE WILL VOTE

FROM THE VOTING MEMBERS OF PROVINCIAL ASSEMBLY WERE ELECTED

AND LASTLY MEMBERS OF CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY.


TOTAL SEATS -389 

PRINCELY STATES-93 SEATS

BRITISH INDIA PROVINCES -296 SEATS


December 9, 1946, The first meeting of the Constituent Assembly held and

a temporary president was to be elected , as per a French Ritual oldest member was elected and he was Dr. Sachinanand Sinha.

It also elected Dr. Rajendra Prasad as the president,

H C Mukherjee and V T Krishnamachari as vice presidents.

Within four days of meeting Nehru presented Objective Resolution.


OBJECTIVE RESOLUTIONS 


VISION FOR FUTURE INDIA

Fundamentals

philosophy

defined territorial area of free India

India shall be a union of states which were part of the British India and the states which are willing to be a part of India

India to be Independent, Sovereign and Republic.

Constitution shall provide social, economic and political justice

Indian citizens will have equal opportunity

India shall have freedom of thought, expression, faith and worship 

Indian Constitution shall safeguard Minorities, tribal and backward


ACCEPTED ON 22ND JANUARY 1947 WITH MAJORITY


Prime Minister ATLEE on 20TH FEB 1947 declared "British would quit India after transferring power into the responsible hand not later than 3 JUNE, 1948.

Lord Mountbatten was the new Viceroy.


INDIAN INDEPENDENCE ACT 1947 -The act proclaimed lapse of British paramountcy over Indian States. It provided the creation of two dominions India and Pakistan from 15th August 1947 where the British rule came to an end.

The struggle of independence was thus over but the dream of the nation to be live as an independent at the same time establishing a democratic form of govt. with the ideas of justice, equality and sovereignty with a feeling of brotherhood has just started.


FRAMING OF THE NEW CONSTITUTION

1947-1950 

On August 29, 1947 Drafting Committee was set up under the chairmanship of Dr. B R Ambedkar.

The draft was published in the month of January 1948 and was having 8 months to be discussed and propose the amendments. 

As many as 7,635 amendments were proposed and 2,473 were discussed.

The Constituent Assembly held 11 sessions and in all it took 2 years, 11 months and 18 days to complete

On 26th November 1949 presently celebrated as Constitution day the new Constitution of India was adopted by the Constituent Assembly having the Articles 5,6,7,8,9,60,324,366,367,372,380,391,392 and 393 came into force at once.


The remaining provisions of the Constitution came into force on 26th January, 1950 which is the date of the commencement of our Constitution.


It repealed Indian Independence Act along with Government of India Act 1935 with supplementing the later act without including the Abolition of Privy Council Jurisdiction, 1950.

Further being the replacement of Federal Court with the Supreme Court of India 1950.





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