1. January 26 is celebrated as Republic Day in our country. It was on this day, in 1950, the new constitution of independent India came into force and India became a democratic republic. The Constituent Assembly headed by Dr. Rajendra Prasad, with Dr. BR Ambedkar as the Chairman of the Drafting Committee, took more than two years to bring the world’s lengthiest constitution to its final shape.
2. The enormous task before the Constituent Assembly was to frame the basic law that would formalize India as a truly democratic nation. Democracy is aptly defined as a system of Government by the people, for the people and of the people. The founding fathers of the Constitution, therefore had to ensure that the basic law of the land contained sufficient provisions for the fulfilment of the democratic aspirations of the people of India not only in the political sphere, but also in the social and economic spheres. That explains the inclusion of a separate part in the Constitution, called the Directive Principles of State Policy.
3. These principles signify the fact that the framers of the Constitution were well aware of the wide gaps and inequalities that existed among the various sections of the Indian population. The Constitution makers had the wisdom to appreciate that political democracy is meaningless when an overwhelming majority of the population is historically trapped in poverty, illiteracy, ill–health and superstition. The Central and State Governments were expected to frame policies so that every citizen is assured of a decent living standard irrespective of sex, caste, religion, language and region.
4. The makers of our Constitution describe India as a Union of States and not as a federation. Being well conversant with the diversity of the nation in terms of the language, religion, caste and region, and its implications on the intended socio–economic development of the country as a whole, the makers of the Constitution opted for a political system in which the Central Government is equipped with overwhelming administrative, legislative and financial muscle. Most of the nations’ policies and programmes for socio-economic development originate at the Central Government, and the responsibility for their successful implementation is entrusted to the states.
Attempt the following questions on the basis of the passage you have read:
(a) The programmes for the socio-economic development originate at __________.
(i) state level
(ii) regional level
(iii) district level
(iv) central government level
Correct Option is (iv) central government level
(b) The British had left behind
(i) a developed India
(ii) a wealthy India
(iii) a poverty-stricken, illiterate India
(iv) a strong and healthy India
Correct Option is (iii) a poverty-stricken, illiterate India
(c) The new constitution of independent India came into force in 1950 on 26th January. (True/False)
(d) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar was not part of the drafting committee. (True/False)
(e) The constitution framers were not aware of the gaps and inequalities that existed among the Indian population. (True/False)
(f) The constitution-makers describe India as a Union of states and not as a ________.
(g) The constitution-makers took more than two years to bring the world’s _________ constitution to its final shape.
(h) Find the word from the passage which means the same as “recognize the good quality of somebody”. (para 3)