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Historical Background

  • In 1928, Motilal Nehru and eight other Congress leaders drafted a constitution for India.
  • In 1931, Indian National Congress in its session at Karachi passed a resolution on how the constitution of independent India should look like.
  • Both these two documents have included the right of universal adult franchise, right to freedom and equality, and to protecting the rights of minorities.
  • Later, the provisions of these documents provided a background of the certain basic values, which were accepted by all leaders and included in the constitution of independent India.
  • British rule had introduced weak legislatures in India by the given voting rights to a few elite persons only.
  • Elections were held in 1937 to Provincial Legislatures all over British India, which were not fully democratic governments.
  • However, the working with these legislative
  • Institutions provided useful experience to Indians, which helped in setting up native institutions in independent India.
  • Like South Africa, India’s Constitution was also drawn up under very difficult circumstances.
  • The makers of the Indian Constitution have adopted its fundamental structure from the Government of India Act 1935.

The Constituent Assembly

  • The Constituent Assembly was the body of elected representatives of the people of India.
  • Elections for the Constituent Assembly were held in July 1946 and its first meeting was convened in December 1946.
  • On Partition, the Constituent Assembly was also divided into two parts called as the Constituent Assembly of India and the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan.
  • The Constituent Assembly of India that drafted the Indian Constitution had 299 members.
  • The Constituent Assembly of India had adopted the Constitution on 26 November 1949, but it came into effect on 26 January 1950.

Factors of Constitution Formation

  • The factors that contributed to the making of Indian Constitution were:
    • French Revolution;
    • Parliamentary democracy in Britain;
    • Bill of Rights in the US; and
    • Socialist revolution in Russia.

Indian Polity

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