IS PREAMBLE A PART OF THE CONSTITUTION?
‘The preamble is the ‘identity card of the Constitution‘.
– N A Palkhivala.
A preamble is an integral part of a Constitution. The preamble refers to the introduction to the Constitution. The preamble is first introduced in the American Constitution. After that many countries include preamble in their Constitution. The preamble in the Constitution of India was inspired by the American Constitution. The preamble to the Constitution of India is based on the principle of the objective resolution, formulated by Pandit Nehru on 13th December 1946 and acquired 22nd January 1947 by the Constituent Assembly.
The script of the preamble:-
The preamble of the Constitution of India stated that India is a socialist, sovereign, secular, Democratic and Republic country. It ensures- social, economical and political Justice;
Liberty of opinion, expression, belief, morality and worship;
Equal status and opportunity for all citizens; and
Fraternity that brings the harmony and morality of the nation.
Keywords in the Preamble:-
The keyword spoke of in the preamble of the Constitution of India are explained below:
- Sovereign – The word Sovereign means ‘greatest in status or authority or superiority’.India is a sovereignty state that means India is an independent state, it is not the hegemony of any other country. India is freely procedure it’s an inner and outer affair. A nation cannot have its constitution without being sovereign. It gives ultimate power to the state to make their decisions. India can either amass a foreign country or cede a part of its province in favour of a foreign country.
- Socialist – The term socialist was added in the Constitution of India by the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act, 1976. Before that Socialist was contained under the Directive Principles of State Policy of the Indian Constitution. In 1955, the Indian Congress party took the initial step to establish a socialistic pattern of society. India is a socialist state that refers to Democratic socialism which indicates a mixed economy system where private and public sector coexists next to each other. Its purpose to abolish poverty, insensibility, imbalance of opportunity in the nation. It is a perfect mixer of Gandhism and Marxism, inclination towards Gandhian socialism.
- Secular – The term secular was added in the Constitution of India by the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act, 1976. India is a secular country that attracted people all over the world. India has a no state religion. The citizen of India has the right to follow the religion he believes in. Article 25-28 of the fundamental rights of the Constitution guarantees all the citizens the right to freedom of religion. All the religions in India have the same status and equal under the eye of law.
- Democratic – The word democratic refers to the form of government in which the ultimate superiority is conferred in the people and controlled promptly by them or by their elected representatives under an electoral system. It is based on the principle of sovereignty that is the domination of ultimate power by the people. In the preamble, the term democratic utilized the significance of concealing not only political democracy but also economical and social democracy. The Constitution of India delivers for diplomat parliamentary democracy according to which the executive departments are accountable to the legislature for all the strategies and activities. The universal adult franchises, rule of law, independence of the judiciary, lack of discrimination on specific grounds are the indications of the democratic character of the Constitution of India.
- Republic – The word republic means the ultimate power vested in the hands of citizens authorized to vote and is exercised by agents chosen directly or indirectly by them. In the preamble of the Constitution of India, the term republic refers that India has an appointed head called the president of India. He is appointed indirectly for five years.
- Justice – In the preamble of the Constitution of India, the term Justice means it provides righteousness to all the people regardless of their race, caste, sex and religion. It is inspired by the Russian Revolution. It adopts three unique forms – political, social and economical. Political justice denotes all citizens of India should have equal political rights. Social Justice indicates that all persons are equal under the law. Economic justice represents that there is no financial discrimination between people. It affects the elimination of gazing imbalances in income, wealth and property.
- Liberty – The word liberty refers to the dearth of constraints on the actions of people, and at the same time, delivering chances for the advancement of individual identities. The principle of liberty was taken from the French Revolution. The preamble in the Constitution of India secures the liberty of thoughts, manners, principles, faith and worship by the fundamental rights.
- Equality – In the preamble of the Constitution of India, the term equality refers to the lack of any special exemptions to any group of people and the expenditure of sufficient opportunities for all the people without any discrimination based on the race, gender, caste and creed. It protects equality among the citizens.
Equality has three parts, they are Political, Economic and Civic.
Political Equality – In the Indian Constitution, it is expressed that every citizen is entitled to get 2 political equality. i) According to Article 325, no person is to be proclaimed ineligible for inclusion in electoral rolls on the grounds of religion, race, gender, caste and creed. ii) As per Article 326 Lok Sabha and the State assemblies elections is to occur basis on adult suffrage.
Economic Equity – Article 39 of the Directive Principles of State Policy under the Constitution of India protects all people without any discrimination on gender on the matter of equal pay and equal work.
Civic Equity – Article 14 to 18 right to equality secure the civic equality right of all the citizens through the fundamental rights mentioned in the Constitution of India.
- Fraternity – The word fraternity refers to a feeling of brotherhood. Single citizenship in India promotes a sense of harmony. It was added in the Constitution of India by the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act, 1976. The preamble of the Constitution proclaims that fraternity has to ensure the importance of the individual and the harmony and integrity of the country. The term integrity was added in the Constitution of India by the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act, 1976. The phrase fraternity secures the nationalism among the nation.
Importance of the Preamble:-
The preamble is the backbone of the Constitution of India. It incorporates the fundamental philosophy and moral, political and religious values. It comprises the concept of the constituent assembly. It furnishes a basic way to examine and analyzes the law of the legislature to find out its characteristics. It spread social, economic and political justice to all the citizens. It contains all the good terms which secure the citizens and make a nation better.
Preamble as part of the Constitution:-
It is a big question the preamble is the part of the Constitution or not? The Supreme Court of India declared much judgements on it.
In the case of Berubari Union And. Others V. Unknown (AIR 1960 SC 845, 1960 3 SCR 250), the Supreme Court held that the preamble indicates the general poses behind the various provisions in the Constitution and is thus a key to the minds of the producers of the Constitution. Moreover, the terms used in any article are controversial and eligible for more than one meaning, some statements may be taken from the ideals enshrined in the preamble. Despite the distinction of the implication of the preamble, the court opined that preamble is not a part of the Constitution.
In the case of Kesavananda Bharati V. State of Kerala (AIR 1973 SC 1461), the Supreme Court dismissed the earlier opinion and declared that the preamble is the part of the Constitution. The preamble is of extreme significance.
In the case of LIC of India V. Consumer Education and Research Centre (1995 AIR 1811, 1995 SCC (5) 482), the Supreme Court again stated that the preamble is a part of the Constitution.
The preamble was enacted by Constituent assembly, like the other part of the Constitution. The members of the Constituent Assembly and the Supreme Court stated that the Preamble is the part of the Constitution of India and it is cannot allocate from the Constitution.
Every part of the Constitution is equally important for the development of the country. The preamble is also a part of the Constitution. It contains the source of authority of the Constitution, nature and the principles of the nation. In simple words, the preamble is the jewel set of the Indian Constitution.
M Laxmikanth, Indian Polity,5th Edition, pg no. 4.5.
Author: Shreeparna Goswami,
2nd year B.A.LL.B of Shyambazar Law College