Test: Historical Development Of Constitution Of India - 2


15 Questions MCQ Test | Test: Historical Development Of Constitution Of India - 2


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QUESTION: 1

Which of the following is/are true regarding the Charter Act of 1833?

(1) Laws made under the Act of 1833 were called Regulations.
(2) It made the East India Company a Commercial as well as Administrative body.

Solution:

Charter Act of 1833 was the final step towards centralization in British India.
Features of the Act were -

  • It made the Governor-General of Bengal as the Governor-General of India, vesting in him all civil and military powers. 
  • Thus, the act created, for the first time, a Government of India having authority over the entire territorial area possessed by the British in India. 
  • Lord William Bentick was the first governor-general of India.
  • It deprived the governor of Bombay and Madras of their legislative powers. 
  • The Governor-General of India was given exclusive legislative powers for the entire British India. 
  • The laws made under the previous acts were called as Regulations while laws made under this act were called as Acts.
  • East India Company ended as a commercial body and became a purely administrative body by this act.
  • Act said that the company’s territories in India were held by it in trust for His Majesty, His heirs and successors’.
  • The Charter Act of 1833 attempted to introduce open competition for selection of civil servants.
  • It also stated that the Indians should not be debarred from holding any place, office and employment under the Company. 
  • But, this provision was negated after opposition from the Court of Directors.
QUESTION: 2

Which of the following is/are true regarding the Charter Act of 1853?

(1) Act of 1853 was last of the Charter Acts and that made Governor-General of Bengal as the Governor-General of India.
(2) It combined the legislative and executive functions of the Governor-General’s council.

Solution:
  • Charter Act of 1853 was the last of the series of Charter Acts passed by the British Parliament between 1793 and 1853 and it was a significant constitutional landmark.
  • Governor-General of Bengal was made the Governor-General of India by Charter Act of 1833.

Features of the 1853 Act were-

  • For the first time, it separated the legislative and executive functions of the Governor-General’s council. 
  • It added six new members called legislative councilors to the council. 
  • Thus, it established a separate Governor-General’s legislative council which came to be known as the Indian (Central) Legislative Council. 
  • This legislative wing of the council functioned as a mini-Parliament, adopting the same procedures as the British Parliament. 
  • Thus, legislation, for the first time, was treated as a special function of the government, requiring special machinery and special process.
  • It introduced an open competition system of selection and recruitment of civil servants. 
  • The covenanted civil service was thus thrown open to the Indians also. 
  • Thus, the Macaulay Committee (Committee on the Indian Civil Service) was appointed in 1854.
  • It extended the Company’s rule and allowed it to retain the possession of Indian territories on trust for the British Crown. But, it did not specify any specific period, unlike the previous Charters. 
  • This meant that the Company’s rule could be terminated at any time the Parliament liked.
  • For the first time, it introduced local representation in the Indian (Central) Legislative Council. 
  • 4 out of 6 new members were appointed by the local (provincial) governments of Madras, Bombay, Bengal and Agra.
QUESTION: 3

Which of the following is/are true?

(1) Act for the Good Government of India was passed in 1858.
(2) Lord Dalhousie became the first Viceroy of India.

Solution:
  • This important Act was enacted in the wake of the Revolt of 1857 - also known as the First War of Independence or the ‘sepoy mutiny’.

  • The act is known as the Act for the Good Government of India.

  • It abolished the East India Company, and transferred the powers of government, territories and revenues to the British Crown.

Features of the Act were -

  • It provided that India was now to be governed by, and in the name of, Her Majesty. 
  • Governor-General of India would now be Viceroy of India. 
  • Viceroy was the direct representative of the British Crown in India. 
  • Lord Canning became the first Viceroy of India.
  • It abolished the Board of Control and Court of Directors thus ending the system of double government.
  • It created a new office, Secretary of State for India, having complete authority and control over Indian administration. 
  • The secretary of state was a member of the British cabinet and was responsible ultimately to the British Parliament.
  • It established a 15-member Council of India to assist the secretary of state for India. 
  • The Council was an advisory body with secretary of state as chairman of the council.
  • It formed the secretary of state-in-council as a body corporate which is capable of suing and being sued in India and in England.
  • The Act of 1858 was, however, largely confined to the improvement of the administrative machinery by which the Indian Government was to be supervised and controlled in England.

  • It did not alter in any substantial way the system of government that prevailed in India.

QUESTION: 4

India Council’s Act of 1861 provided for

(1) Decentralization tendency
(2) Legislative Council for Punjab
(3) Rejected the Portfolio system
(4) Started associating Indians with the law-making process

Solution:
  • After the revolt of 1857, the British Government felt the necessity of seeking the co-operation of the Indians in the administration of India.

  • For this, three acts were enacted by the British Parliament in 1861, 1892 and 1909.

  • System of Budget in British India was introduced in 1860.

  • The Indian Councils Act of 1861 is a significant landmark in the constitutional and political history of India.

Features of the Act of 1861 were

  • It started associating Indians with the law-making process, thus making a beginning of representative institutions. It provided that the viceroy should nominate some Indians as non-official members of his expanded council. 
  • In 1862, Lord Canning, the then viceroy, nominated three Indians to his legislative council—the Raja of Benaras, the Maharaja of Patiala and Sir Dinkar Rao.
  • It restored the legislative powers to the Bombay and Madras Presidencies thus initiating the process of decentralization opposed to the centralising tendency that started from the Regulating Act of 1773 and reaching its peak under the Charter Act of 1833. 
  • This devolution resulted in the grant of almost complete internal autonomy to the provinces in 1937.
  • It also provided for the establishment of new legislative councils for Bengal, North-Western Frontier Province (NWFP) and Punjab, which were established in 1862, 1866 and 1897, respectively.
  • Viceroy could make rules and orders for the more convenient transaction of business in the council. 
  • It recognized the ‘portfolio’ system, introduced by Lord Canning in 1859. 
  • Under this, a member of the Viceroy’s council was made in-charge of one or more departments of the government and was authorized to issue final orders on behalf of the council on matters of his department(s).
  • Viceroy could now issue ordinances, which were valid for 6 months, without the concurrence of the legislative council, during an emergency.
QUESTION: 5

Which of the following is/are true?

(1) India Council’s Act of 1892 made a limited and indirect provision for the use of election in filling up some of the non-official seats.
(2) India Council’s Act of 1892 did not use the word ‘election’ directly in the Act.

Solution:
  • It increased the number of non-official members in the Central and provincial legislative councils, but maintained the official majority in them.

  • It increased the functions of legislative councils.

  • It gave them the power of discussing the budget and asking questions to the executive.

It provided for the nomination of some non-official members of the -

1. Central Legislative Council by the viceroy on the recommendation of the provincial legislative councils and the Bengal Chamber of Commerce, and 
2. Of the Provincial legislative councils by the Governors on the recommendation of the district boards, municipalities, universities, trade associations, zamindars and chambers.

  • The act made a limited and indirect provision for the use of election in filling up some of the non-official seats both in the Central and provincial legislative councils.

  • The word “election” was, however, not used in the act. The process was described as nomination made on the recommendation of certain bodies.

QUESTION: 6

Which were the changes introduced by Indian Independence Act 1947?

(1) It provided right to secede from British Commonwealth
(2) It gave two options to Princely States i.e., join either India or Pakistan.
(3) It made India a Dominion.
(4) It abolished office of the Viceroy

Solution:

Features of the Act were -

  • It ended the British rule in India and declared India as an independent and sovereign state from August 15, 1947.

  • It provided for the partition of India and creation of two independent dominions of India and Pakistan with the right to secede from the British Commonwealth.

  • It abolished the office of viceroy and provided, for each dominion, a governor-general, who was to be appointed by the British King on the advice of the dominion cabinet.

  • His Majesty’s Government in Britain was to have no responsibility with respect to the Government of India or Pakistan.

  • The Constituent Assemblies of the two dominions could frame and adopt any constitution for themselves and repeal any act of the British Parliament, including the Independence act itself.

  • It empowered the Constituent Assemblies of both the dominions to legislate for their respective territories till the new constitutions were drafted and enforced.

  • No Act of the British Parliament passed after August 15, 1947 was to extend to either of the new dominions unless, it was extended by a law made by legislature of the dominion.

  • It abolished the office of the secretary of state for India and transferred his functions to the secretary of state for Commonwealth Affairs.

  • It proclaimed the lapse of British paramountcy over the Indian princely states and treaty relations with tribal areas from August 15,1947.

  • It granted freedom to the Indian princely states either to join the Dominion of India or Dominion of Pakistan or to remain independent.

  • It provided for the governance of each of the dominions and the provinces by the Government of India Act of 1935, till the new Constitutions were framed. The dominions could make modifications in the Act.

  • British Monarch could not veto bills or ask for reservation of certain bills for his approval.

  • But, the Governor-General can assent to any bill in the name of His Majesty.

  • Governor-General of India and the provincial governors were termed as constitutional (nominal) heads of the states. They were to act on the advice of the respective council of ministers in all matters.

  • It dropped the title of Emperor of India from the royal titles of the king of England.

  • It discontinued the appointment to civil services and reservation of posts by the secretary of state for India.

  • The members of the civil services appointed before August 15, 1947 would continue to enjoy all benefits that they were entitled to till that time.

QUESTION: 7

The Constituent Assembly of India was step up under the framework of?

Solution:

It was M. N. Roy, a pioneer of communist movement in India and an advocate of radical democratism, who put forward the idea of a Constituent Assembly for India in 1934 for the first time.  In 1935, the Indian National Congress (INC), for the first time, officially demanded a Constituent Assembly to frame the Constitution of India. 
In 1938, Jawaharlal Nehru, on behalf the INC declared that ‘the Constitution of free India must be framed, without outside interference, by a Constituent Assembly elected on the basis of adult franchise’. The Constituent Assembly was constituted in November 1946 under the scheme formulated by the Cabinet Mission Plan.

QUESTION: 8

The all important drafting committee had two distinguished jurist and lawyers along with the chairman Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. They were?

Solution:

Among all the committees of the Constituent Assembly, the most important committee was the Drafting Committee set up on August 29, 1947. It was this committee that was entrusted with the task of preparing a draft of the new Constitution. It consisted of seven members.
They were:

  • Dr B R Ambedkar (Chairman)
  • N Gopalaswamy Ayyangar
  • Alladi Krishnaswamy Ayyar
  • Dr K M Munshi
  • Syed Mohammad Saadullah
  • N Madhava Rau (He replaced B L Mitter who resigned due to ill-health)
  • T T Krishnamachari (He replaced D P Khaitan who died in 1948)

The Drafting Committee, after taking into consideration the proposals of the various committees, prepared the first draft of the Constitution of India, which was published in February 1948. The people of India were given eight months to discuss the draft and propose amendments. In the light of the public comments, criticisms and suggestions, the Drafting Committee prepared a second draft, which was published in October 1948.

QUESTION: 9

After the creation of Constituent Assembly of Pakistan in 1947, the membership of Constituent Assembly of India was reduced to 299 from 389 earlier. What was the total number of members from the provinces in the Constituent Assembly?

Solution:

The Muslim League members (hailing from the areas7 included in the Pakistan) withdrew from the Constituent Assembly for India. Consequently, the total strength of the Assembly came down to 299 as against 389 originally fixed in 1946 under the Cabinet Mission Plan. 
The strength of the Indian provinces (formerly British Provinces) was reduced from 296 to 229 and those of the princely states from 93 to 70. 

QUESTION: 10

The Constituent Assembly of India was passed and adopted on which of the following days?

Solution:

The Constituent Assembly had 11 sessions over two years, 11 months and 18 days. The Constitution-makers had gone through the constitutions of about 60 countries, and the Draft Constitution was considered for 114 days. The total expenditure incurred on making the Constitution amounted to ` 64 lakh.
On January 24, 1950, the Constituent Assembly held its final session. It, however, did not end, and continued as the provisional parliament of India from January 26, 1950 till the formation of new Parliament8 after the first general elections in 1951–52.

QUESTION: 11

The philosophy underlying the Indian constitution was embodied quite early in the Objective Resolution, which was moved in the first session of the Constituent Assembly (on 13 December 1946) by:

Solution:

On December 13, 1946, Jawaharlal Nehru moved the historic ‘Objectives Resolution’ in the Assembly. It laid down the fundamentals and philosophy of the constitutional structure. The Resolution was unanimously adopted by the Assembly on January 22, 1947. It influenced the eventual shaping of the constitution through all its subsequent stages. Its modified version forms the Preamble of the present Constitution.

QUESTION: 12

The Objective Resolution was unanimously adopted by the Constituent Assembly on 22nd January 1947, had the following provisions as given below:

I. Adequate safeguards shall be provided for minorities, backward and tribal areas, and   depressed and other backward classes.
II. All power and authority of the Sovereign Independent India, its constituent parts and organs of government, are derived from the people.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

Solution:

The 'Objective Resolution' which laid down the fundamentals and philosophy of the constitutional structure which read as:

  • “This Constituent Assembly declares its firm and solemn resolve to proclaim India as an Independent Sovereign Republic and to draw up for her future governance a Constitution:
  • Wherein the territories that now comprise British India, the territories that now form the Indian States, and such other parts of India as are outside India and the States as well as other territories as are willing to be constituted into the independent sovereign India, shall be a Union of them all; and
  • Wherein the said territories, whether with their present boundaries or with such others as may be determined by the Constituent Assembly and thereafter according to the law of the
  • Constitution, shall possess and retain the status of autonomous units together with residuary powers and exercise all powers and functions of Government and administration save and except such powers and functions as are vested in or assigned to the Union or as are inherent or implied in the Union or resulting there from; and
  • Wherein all power and authority of the Sovereign Independent India, its constituent parts and organs of Government are derived from the people; and
  • wherein shall be guaranteed and secured to all the people of India justice, social, economic and political; equality of status of opportunity, and before the law; freedom of thought, expression, belief, faith, worship, vocation, association and action, subject to law and public morality; and
  • Where in adequate safeguards shall be provided for minorities, backward and tribal areas, and depressed and other backward classes; and
  • Where by shall be maintained the integrity of the territory of the Republic and its sovereign rights on land, sea and air according to justice and the law of civilized nations; and
  • This ancient land attains its rightful and honoured place in the world and makes its full and willing contribution to the promotion of world peace and the welfare of mankind.”
QUESTION: 13

The provisions in the Constitution of India like Constitutional Amendment can be done by 2/3rd majority in Parliament  and election of the members of Rajya Sabha on the basis of proportional representation are incorporated form ?

Solution:

The Parliament is vested with the powers to amend the Constitution by way of addition, variation or repeal of any provision. The major part of the Constitution can be amended by the Parliament with special majority, that is, a majority (that is, more than 50 per cent) of the total membership of each House and a majority of not less than two-thirds of the members present and voting in each House.

QUESTION: 14

The national Anthem was adopted by the constituent Assembly on which of the following day?

Solution:

The National Anthem of India Jana-gana-mana, composed originally in Bengali by Rabindranath Tagore, was adopted in its Hindi version by the Constituent Assembly as the National Anthem of India on 24 January 1950.

QUESTION: 15

The first meeting of the Constituent Assembly had taken place on December 9, 1946 was presided by whom as its interim president?

Solution:

The Constituent Assembly held its first meeting on December 9, 1946. The Muslim League boycotted the meeting and insisted on a separate state of Pakistan. The meeting was thus attended by only 211 members. Dr Sachchidan-and Sinha, the oldest member, was elected as the temporary President of the Assembly, following the French practice.
Later, on December 11, 1946, Dr Rajendra Prasad and H C Mukherjee were elected as the President and Vice-President of the Assembly respectively. Sir B N Rau was appointed as the Constitutional advisor to the Assembly.