NCERT Textbook Chapter 10 - The Philosophy of the Constitution, Indian Constitution at Work UPSC Notes | EduRev

Indian Polity for UPSC CSE

UPSC : NCERT Textbook Chapter 10 - The Philosophy of the Constitution, Indian Constitution at Work UPSC Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


242
Indian Constitution at Work
Neha: You forget that when we fought the British, we were not
against the British as such, we were against the principle of
colonialism. That has nothing to do with adopting a system of
government that we wanted, wherever it came from.
  8. Why is it said that the making of the Indian Constitution was
unrepresentative? Does that make the Constitution
unrepresentative? Give reasons for your answer.
  9. One of the limitations of the Constitution of India is that it does not
adequately attend to gender justice. What evidence can you give to
substantiate this charge? If you were writing the Constitution today,
what provisions would you recommend for remedying this limitation?
10. Do you agree with the statement that “it is not clear why in a poor
developing country, certain basic socio-economic rights were
relegated to the section on Directive Principles rather than made
an integral feature of our fundamental rights”? Give reasons for
your answer. What do you think are the possible reasons for putting
socio-economic rights in the section of Directive Principles?
REQUEST FOR FEEDBACK
How did you like this textbook? What was your experience in reading or using this?
What were the difficulties you faced? What changes would you like to see in the next
version of this book?
Write to us on all these and any other matter related to this textbook. You could be a
teacher, a parent, a student or just a general reader. We value any and every feedback.
Please write to:
Head
Department of Education in Social Sciences and Humanities (DESSH)
National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)
Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi 10016.
You could also send an email to politics.ncert@gmail.com
Page 2


242
Indian Constitution at Work
Neha: You forget that when we fought the British, we were not
against the British as such, we were against the principle of
colonialism. That has nothing to do with adopting a system of
government that we wanted, wherever it came from.
  8. Why is it said that the making of the Indian Constitution was
unrepresentative? Does that make the Constitution
unrepresentative? Give reasons for your answer.
  9. One of the limitations of the Constitution of India is that it does not
adequately attend to gender justice. What evidence can you give to
substantiate this charge? If you were writing the Constitution today,
what provisions would you recommend for remedying this limitation?
10. Do you agree with the statement that “it is not clear why in a poor
developing country, certain basic socio-economic rights were
relegated to the section on Directive Principles rather than made
an integral feature of our fundamental rights”? Give reasons for
your answer. What do you think are the possible reasons for putting
socio-economic rights in the section of Directive Principles?
REQUEST FOR FEEDBACK
How did you like this textbook? What was your experience in reading or using this?
What were the difficulties you faced? What changes would you like to see in the next
version of this book?
Write to us on all these and any other matter related to this textbook. You could be a
teacher, a parent, a student or just a general reader. We value any and every feedback.
Please write to:
Head
Department of Education in Social Sciences and Humanities (DESSH)
National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)
Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi 10016.
You could also send an email to politics.ncert@gmail.com
241
Chapter 10: The Philosophy of the Constitution
d. that state will recognise rights of religious groups
e. that state will have limited powers to intervene in affairs of
religions
6. Match the following.
a. Freedom to criticise  i. Substantive
treatment of widows achievement
b. Taking decisions in the ii. Procedural achievement
constituent assembly on
the basis of reason,
not self interest
c. Accepting importance of iii. Neglect of gender justice
community in an individual’s
life
d. Article 370 and 371 iv. Liberal individualism
e. Unequal rights to women v. Attention to requirements of
regarding family property and a particular region
children
7. This discussion was taking place in a class. Read the various
arguments and state which of these do you agree with and why.
Jayesh: I still think that our Constitution is only a borrowed
document.
Saba: Do you mean to say that there is nothing Indian in it? But is
there such a thing as Indian and western in the case of values and
ideas? Take equality between men and women. What is western
about it? And even if it is, should we reject it only because it is
western?
Jayesh: What I mean is that after fighting for independence from
the British, did we not adopt their system of parliamentary
government?
Page 3


242
Indian Constitution at Work
Neha: You forget that when we fought the British, we were not
against the British as such, we were against the principle of
colonialism. That has nothing to do with adopting a system of
government that we wanted, wherever it came from.
  8. Why is it said that the making of the Indian Constitution was
unrepresentative? Does that make the Constitution
unrepresentative? Give reasons for your answer.
  9. One of the limitations of the Constitution of India is that it does not
adequately attend to gender justice. What evidence can you give to
substantiate this charge? If you were writing the Constitution today,
what provisions would you recommend for remedying this limitation?
10. Do you agree with the statement that “it is not clear why in a poor
developing country, certain basic socio-economic rights were
relegated to the section on Directive Principles rather than made
an integral feature of our fundamental rights”? Give reasons for
your answer. What do you think are the possible reasons for putting
socio-economic rights in the section of Directive Principles?
REQUEST FOR FEEDBACK
How did you like this textbook? What was your experience in reading or using this?
What were the difficulties you faced? What changes would you like to see in the next
version of this book?
Write to us on all these and any other matter related to this textbook. You could be a
teacher, a parent, a student or just a general reader. We value any and every feedback.
Please write to:
Head
Department of Education in Social Sciences and Humanities (DESSH)
National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)
Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi 10016.
You could also send an email to politics.ncert@gmail.com
241
Chapter 10: The Philosophy of the Constitution
d. that state will recognise rights of religious groups
e. that state will have limited powers to intervene in affairs of
religions
6. Match the following.
a. Freedom to criticise  i. Substantive
treatment of widows achievement
b. Taking decisions in the ii. Procedural achievement
constituent assembly on
the basis of reason,
not self interest
c. Accepting importance of iii. Neglect of gender justice
community in an individual’s
life
d. Article 370 and 371 iv. Liberal individualism
e. Unequal rights to women v. Attention to requirements of
regarding family property and a particular region
children
7. This discussion was taking place in a class. Read the various
arguments and state which of these do you agree with and why.
Jayesh: I still think that our Constitution is only a borrowed
document.
Saba: Do you mean to say that there is nothing Indian in it? But is
there such a thing as Indian and western in the case of values and
ideas? Take equality between men and women. What is western
about it? And even if it is, should we reject it only because it is
western?
Jayesh: What I mean is that after fighting for independence from
the British, did we not adopt their system of parliamentary
government?
240
Indian Constitution at Work
2. Which of the options given below cannot be used to complete the
following statement?
Democratic countries need a constitution to
Check the power of the government.
Protect minorities from majority.
Bring independence from colonial rule.
Ensure that a long-term vision is not lost by momentary
passions.
Bring social change in peaceful manner.
3. The following are different positions about reading and
understanding Constituent Assembly debates.
 i. Which of these statements argues that Constituent Assembly
debates are relevant even today? Which statement says that
they are not relevant?
ii. With which of these positions do you agree and why?
a. Common people are too busy in earning livelihood and
meeting different pressures of life. They can’t understand
the legal language of  these debates.
b. The conditions and challenges today are different from the
time when the Constitution was made. To read the ideas of
Constitution makers and use them for our new times is
trying to bring past in the present
c. Our ways of understanding the world and the present
challenges have not changed totally. Constituent Assembly
debates can provide us reasons why certain practises are
important. In a period when constitutional practises are
being challenged, not knowing the reasons can destroy them.
4.  Explain the difference between the Indian Constitution and western
ideas in the light of
a. Understanding of secularism.
b. Articles 370 and 371.
c. Affirmative action.
d. Universal adult franchise.
5. Which of the following  principles of secularism are adopted in the
Constitution of India?
a. that state will have nothing to do with religion
b. that state will have close relation with religion
c. that state can discriminate among religions
v.
iv.
iii.
ii.
i.
Page 4


242
Indian Constitution at Work
Neha: You forget that when we fought the British, we were not
against the British as such, we were against the principle of
colonialism. That has nothing to do with adopting a system of
government that we wanted, wherever it came from.
  8. Why is it said that the making of the Indian Constitution was
unrepresentative? Does that make the Constitution
unrepresentative? Give reasons for your answer.
  9. One of the limitations of the Constitution of India is that it does not
adequately attend to gender justice. What evidence can you give to
substantiate this charge? If you were writing the Constitution today,
what provisions would you recommend for remedying this limitation?
10. Do you agree with the statement that “it is not clear why in a poor
developing country, certain basic socio-economic rights were
relegated to the section on Directive Principles rather than made
an integral feature of our fundamental rights”? Give reasons for
your answer. What do you think are the possible reasons for putting
socio-economic rights in the section of Directive Principles?
REQUEST FOR FEEDBACK
How did you like this textbook? What was your experience in reading or using this?
What were the difficulties you faced? What changes would you like to see in the next
version of this book?
Write to us on all these and any other matter related to this textbook. You could be a
teacher, a parent, a student or just a general reader. We value any and every feedback.
Please write to:
Head
Department of Education in Social Sciences and Humanities (DESSH)
National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)
Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi 10016.
You could also send an email to politics.ncert@gmail.com
241
Chapter 10: The Philosophy of the Constitution
d. that state will recognise rights of religious groups
e. that state will have limited powers to intervene in affairs of
religions
6. Match the following.
a. Freedom to criticise  i. Substantive
treatment of widows achievement
b. Taking decisions in the ii. Procedural achievement
constituent assembly on
the basis of reason,
not self interest
c. Accepting importance of iii. Neglect of gender justice
community in an individual’s
life
d. Article 370 and 371 iv. Liberal individualism
e. Unequal rights to women v. Attention to requirements of
regarding family property and a particular region
children
7. This discussion was taking place in a class. Read the various
arguments and state which of these do you agree with and why.
Jayesh: I still think that our Constitution is only a borrowed
document.
Saba: Do you mean to say that there is nothing Indian in it? But is
there such a thing as Indian and western in the case of values and
ideas? Take equality between men and women. What is western
about it? And even if it is, should we reject it only because it is
western?
Jayesh: What I mean is that after fighting for independence from
the British, did we not adopt their system of parliamentary
government?
240
Indian Constitution at Work
2. Which of the options given below cannot be used to complete the
following statement?
Democratic countries need a constitution to
Check the power of the government.
Protect minorities from majority.
Bring independence from colonial rule.
Ensure that a long-term vision is not lost by momentary
passions.
Bring social change in peaceful manner.
3. The following are different positions about reading and
understanding Constituent Assembly debates.
 i. Which of these statements argues that Constituent Assembly
debates are relevant even today? Which statement says that
they are not relevant?
ii. With which of these positions do you agree and why?
a. Common people are too busy in earning livelihood and
meeting different pressures of life. They can’t understand
the legal language of  these debates.
b. The conditions and challenges today are different from the
time when the Constitution was made. To read the ideas of
Constitution makers and use them for our new times is
trying to bring past in the present
c. Our ways of understanding the world and the present
challenges have not changed totally. Constituent Assembly
debates can provide us reasons why certain practises are
important. In a period when constitutional practises are
being challenged, not knowing the reasons can destroy them.
4.  Explain the difference between the Indian Constitution and western
ideas in the light of
a. Understanding of secularism.
b. Articles 370 and 371.
c. Affirmative action.
d. Universal adult franchise.
5. Which of the following  principles of secularism are adopted in the
Constitution of India?
a. that state will have nothing to do with religion
b. that state will have close relation with religion
c. that state can discriminate among religions
v.
iv.
iii.
ii.
i.
239
Chapter 10: The Philosophy of the Constitution
Constitution becomes the embodiment of this vision. Many
people have said that the best summary of this vision or the
philosophy of the Constitution is to be found in the preamble to
our Constitution.
Have you carefully read the preamble? Apart from the various
objectives mentioned in it, the preamble makes a very humble
claim: the Constitution is not ‘given’ by a body of great men, it
is prepared and adopted by ‘We, the people of India…’. Thus,
the people are themselves the makers of their own destinies,
and democracy is the instrument that people have used for
shaping their present and their future. More than five decades
since the Constitution was drafted, we have fought over many
matters, we have seen that the courts and the governments
have disagreed on many interpretations, the centre and the
States have many differences of opinion, and political parties
have fought bitterly. As you will study next year, our politics
has been full of problems and shortcomings. And yet, if you
asked the politician or the common citizen, you will find that
every one continues to share in that famous vision embodied in
the Constitution: we want to live together and prosper together
on the basis of the principles of equality, liberty and fraternity.
This sharing in the vision or the philosophy of the Constitution
is the valuable outcome of the working of the Constitution. In
1950, making of this Constitution was a great achievement.
Today, keeping alive the philosophical vision of that Constitution
may be our important achievement.
Exercises
1. The following are certain laws. Are they connected with any value?
If yes, then what is the underlying value? Give reasons.
a. Both daughters and sons will have share in the family property.
b. There will be different slabs of sales tax on different consumer
items.
c. Religious instructions will not be given in any government
school.
d. There shall be no begar or forced labour.
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