Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

Indian Polity for UPSC CSE

UPSC : Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

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Making of the Constitution

Objectives

  • To study the history of the Constituent Assembly

  • To understand the leaders involved with the making of the Constitution.

  • To know the sources of the constitutional provisions.

Introduction

The Constitution of India is one of the most comprehensive documents in the world and its making required the joint efforts of numerous luminaries from various walks of life. The Constitution also has several aspects that were borrowed from constitutions around the world. A Constituent Assembly was formed in 1946, which adopted the Constitution on 26 November 1949.
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevLogo of the Constituent Assembly

History

  • An idea for a Constituent Assembly was first proposed in 1934 by the communist leader M. N. Roy.

  • It was adopted by the Indian National Congress in 1935.

  • In 1939, C. Rajagopalachari proposed that the Constituent Assembly be elected through universal adult franchise.

  • The INC demanded the creation of a Constituent Assembly to frame the Constitution in 1935.

  • In 1940, the British accepted this demand under the August Offer.

  • The demand remained unfulfilled following the rejection of the Cripps’ Mission in 1942.

  • The 1946 Cabinet Mission Plan accepted this demand and a Constituent Assembly was founded on 6 December 1946.

  • It reassembled on 14 August 1947 as a sovereign body and became the first parliament in independent India.

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevM.N Roy

Question 1:The Constituent Assembly of India was step up under the framework of which of the following?
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

Composition of the Constituent Assembly

  • The Constituent Assembly consisted of 389 members of whom 
    (i) 292 were representatives of the Provinces.
    (ii) 93 represented the Princely States.
    (iii) Four were from the Chief Commissioner provinces of Delhi, Ajmer-Merwara, Coorg, and British Baluchistan.

  • The members of the Constituent Assembly were elected by the provincial assemblies by a single, transferable-vote system of proportional representation

  • The Assembly was not elected on the basis of universal adult suffrage, and Muslims and Sikhs received special representation as minorities.

  • Following the elections, Congress secured 208 seats; the Muslim League won 73 and Independents 15.

  • However, the Muslim League and nominees from the Princely States refused to cooperate in the Constituent Assembly.

  • After Partition in 1947, the representatives of the areas incorporated into Pakistan ceased to be members of the Constituent Assembly of India.

  • The membership of the Constituent Assembly was 299 after the reorganization, and it met on 31 December 1947.

  • The Interim Government of India was formed on 2 September 1946 from the newly elected Constituent Assembly.

  • These delegates sat over 114 days and discussed what the constitution should contain and what laws should be included.

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevA meeting of the Constituent Assembly

Question 2:Consider the following statements:
I. The members of the Constituent Assembly were elected on the basis of universal adult franchise.
II. At the time of adopting the Constitution, there were 389 members in the Constituent Assembly.
III. Members were elected via proportional representation.
Choose the correct answer:
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

Working

  • Sachidananda Sinha was elected the temporary president of the first meeting of the Constituent Assembly.

  • The first President of the assembly was Dr. Rajendra Prasad and the first Vice-President was Harendra Coomar Mukherjee.

  • B.N Rau was appointed as the constitutional adviser to the assembly. He prepared an initial draft of the constitution.

  • Jawaharlal Nehru presented the Objective Resolution, which had the following provisions:
    (i) Boundaries, as determined by CA, retain the status of autonomous units together possess residuary powers and exercise functions of Government as vested in or assigned to the Union
    (ii) Integrity and sovereign rights to be maintained as per Law and Justice of civilized nations.
    (iii) Territories comprising British India, parts outside India, and other territories willing to join India shall be a Union.
    (iv) Justice, Social, Economic, Equality of opportunity, Freedom of thought, worship, etc secured to all the people of India.
    (v) Adequate safeguards shall be provided for minorities, backward and tribal areas, and depressed and other backward classes.
    (vi) Power and Authority of sovereign India derived from People
    (vii) Ancient land attains its rightful and honored place in the world

  • There were 8 major and 13 minor committees that were constituted.

  • The Drafting Committee was one of the most important committees and it consisted of B.R Ambedkar and 7 other members.


Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevSachidananda Sinha

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevRajendra Prasad

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevH.C Mookherjee

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevThe Drafting Committee members

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRevB.N Rau
  • The Constituent Assembly had a total of 11 sessions over 2 years, 11 months, and 18 days.

  • The total expenditure for the whole process was Rs. 64 lakhs.

  • Subsequent to the Independence of India Act, the Constituent Assembly got divided into 2 organs:
    (i) Legislative Body under G.V Mavlankar
    (ii) Constituent Body under Rajendra Prasad

Question 3:Consider the following statements:
I. Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected as the temporary President of the Constituent Assembly.
II. Jawaharlal Nehru chaired the States Committee, Union Powers Committee and Provincial Committee.
III. G.V Mavlankar was appointed to the Drafting committee following the death of D.P Khaitan.
Choose the correct answer:
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

Enactment and Enforcement

  • By 14 November 1949, the third and final reading of the final draft was concluded.

  • On 26 November 1949, the Draft Constitution was declared as passed.

  • The Constitution as adopted on November 26, 1949, contained a Preamble395 Articles, and 8 Schedules.

  • On 26 January 1950, the remaining major provisions of the Constitution were passed and the Constitution of India was officially enforced.

  • This brought an end to the Government of India Act, 1935 and the Indian Independence Act, 1947.

    Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev
    Adoption of Constitution of India

Criticisms

  • Despite its large membership, the Constituent Assembly was not a representative or a sovereign body.
  • The members were not elected on the basis of universal adult suffrage.
  • The vast majority of its members belonged to INC.
  • Further, most of the members were lawyers and upper-caste Hindus.
  • The entire process of drafting a new Constitution was a time-consuming process.

Sources for the Indian Constitution

  • A lot of the salient features of the Indian Constitution were actually borrowed from earlier legislations of foreign constitutions.

  • Constitutions of 60 nations were consulted as a result.

Source

Features

USA
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

  • Fundamental Rights,
  • Preamble
  • Judicial Review
  • Independence of Judiciary
  • Vice President
  • Impeachment of President
  • Removal of SC and HC judges.

UK
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

  • Parliamentary government,
  • Rule of Law,
  • Single Citizenship,
  • Bicameralism,
  • Legislative Speaker
  • Prerogative writs,
  • parliamentary privileges,
  • legislative procedure,
  • Cabinet system.

Govt. of India Act, 1935
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

  • Federal Scheme,
  • Governor,
  • Judiciary,
  • Public Service Commission,
  • Emergency provisions,
  • Administrative details.

Canada
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Federation with Strong Centre
  • Residuary powers with Centre
  • Appointment of Governors by Centre
  • Advisory Jurisdiction of SC

Weimar Germany
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Suspension of Fundamental Rights during emergency

Ireland
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Directive Principles of State Policy
  • Method of election of President
  • Nomination of members to Rajya Sabha

France
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Republic
  • Ideals of liberty, equality and fraternity in the Preamble

Soviet Union

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Fundamental Duties
  • Ideals of justice (social, economic and political) in the Preamble.

Japan

Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Procedure established by Law

South Africa
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev


  • Election of members of Rajya Sabha
  • Procedure for amendment in the Constitution

Australia
Making of the Constitution UPSC Notes | EduRev

  • Concurrent List
  • Joint sitting of the two Houses of Parliament
  • Freedom of Trade, Commerce and Intercourse.

Question 4:The provisions for Governor under Indian Constitution have been borrowed from which of the following:

Timeline of Important Events

  • 6 December 1946: Formation of the Constituent Assembly

  • 9 December 1946First meeting of the Assembly. First Speech by J.B Kripalani

  • 11 December 1946: Appointment of permanent President, Vice President, and Constitutional Advisor

  • 13 December 1946Jawaharlal Nehru presents the Objective Resolution before the Assembly

  • 22 January 1947Objective Resolution unanimously adopted.

  • 22 July 1947National Flag adopted.

  • 15 August 1947Indian independence and partition.

  • 29 August 1947Drafting Committee constituted with B.R Ambedkar as its Chairman.

  • 26 November 1949Constitution of India passed and adopted by the Constituent Assembly.

  • 24 January 1950: Last meeting of the Constituent Assembly. The National Anthem adopted.

  • 26 January 1950: Constitution of India comes into force.

Question 5:The national Anthem was adopted by the constituent Assembly on which of the following day?

Try it yourself:

Q. The Government of India Act, 1935 played an indispensable role in the drafting of the Constitution of India. Explain. (250 words)

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