Originally published at: https://blog.12min.com/indian-polity-pdf-summary/
For Civil Services Examinations
If you’ve never been to India, you’ll never understand the power and pride of Indians.
What do we mean? – Well, Indians have a long history, and their way of life is carved deep into their mentality.
The introduction of Modern India is not a brainchild of Gandi, but the will of the people.
Who Should Read “Indian Polity”? And Why?As a foreigner, and as someone eager to learn about India, I can say that this is an astonishing book. It covers the history of an oppressed nation and their rise to freedom through the prism of politics.
We wholeheartedly urge Indians, and other knowledge-thirsty individuals to explore “Indian Polity” and learn more about India as a country.
Laxmikanth is the Director of Laxmikanth IAS and has a lot of experiences in teaching and mentoring civil service applicants.
He is also an author and renowned coach.
"Indian Polity PDF Summary"Indian history is one of the most disputable points in modern history. A quarrel among Indians and foreign invaders lasted for more than 2 millenniums. You all have some knowledge of Alexander The Great’s endeavors to conquer India – a trend which became an obsession for other Mighty Empires as well.
For the average Joe, India is a poor place, with little to no opportunities. But, this is entirely false!
Prior to being overtaken by the British East Corporation, India contributed to the world GDP with an astonishing 20+ percent. So, when the Britains arrived as traders on behalf of Queen Elizabeth I, they obtained the “Diwani” and took control over the vast empire.
With the fall of colonialization and the apartheid, India managed to rise as a sovereign state in 1947. It became clear to the members of the parliament that India needs a Constitution that will represent and safeguard the interests of the culturally and religiously diversified Indian population.
The Creation of the Constitution
A lot of processes had to be executed before India could become a factor in the global arena. The composition of a Constitution Assembly became a priority for the new political structure.
On December 13th, 1946, Jawaharlal Nehru introduced the well-known “Objectives Resolution” in the Assembly. The most essential element, integrated into this new concept, was that all Indian Provinces, including the territories controlled by the British, would compose the modern Indian State.
According to the Constitution, the power vested in the assembly members and other government bodies, derive strictly from the people. Whereas, a few months later, the Assembly absorbed the role of an independent and legislative body.
In the present year (1947), the Constituent Assembly introduced the National Flag. Three years later, in 1950, when Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected as India’s first President and adopted the national anthem.
For people, who have little knowledge of India’s revolution in politics, it’s safe to say that British-Indian Provinces, dominated the Assembly, leaving the Princely States onto the second place. From a religious standpoint, Hindus composed most of the Congress, with Muslims and others to follow.
Not all Constitutions, but many, including the American one, begin with a Preamble. India decided to follow this trend.
It goes like this:
We, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA” having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVEREIGN SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens:
JUSTICE, Social, Economic and Political
LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship
EQUALITY of status and opportunity, and to promote among them all
FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the NATION
IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY, this 26th of November 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION.
If you got the impression that India’s Preamble has a Socialist context, well, you are not far-cry from the truth. Over the years, many politicians and Assembly members argued whether the Preamble is a part of the Constitution or not.
Supreme Court states that it is, but it’s vital to note that the Preamble should not be construed as a source of power to the legislature. In addition, it’s non-justiciable, meaning that its counts are not enforced by law.
So, if you ask me (which I am sure you aren’t), it’s one big mess, which has a perpetual tendency. New, bright-minded politicians assert that India should distance itself from the socialist background, and adjust the Constitution. But, that’s a story for a different day.
Union, Citizenship, and Rights
First and foremost, India is not a Federation but a Union. As a socialist state, the constitution is adjusted and formed as an independent federal body, but that doesn’t imply that India consists of several republics within its borders.
The Provinces, which may give the impression of self-governing Republics, are in fact, members of the Assembly. The work behind this integration unfolds since the day India declared independence.
India, following the example of many other modern states, consists of two types of people: citizens and aliens. Well, the term “aliens” doesn’t stand for Martians or some mythical race that inhabits India, but citizens from other countries.
They can later be sub-divided into Friendly and Enemy. The friendly aliens enjoy rights far greater than those of the enemies. So, what kind of basic human rights are we referring to:
- Rights to practice your religion, without being subjected to harsh treatment
- Rights to freedom of speech
- Rights to equality of opportunity
- Cultural rights
- Rights to vote for your representatives in the Parliament
- Eligibility to serve India by holding public offices
- Incorporation of Territory
The legal bodies, such as the Supreme Court or the Public Prosecutor, are entitled to restrict these provisions at given circumstances. Most of these laws are directly enforced, however, there are others which can only be enacted by the Parliament.
Article 13, declares that all laws or practices which don’t apply to the fundamental rights consisted in the Constitution, automatically lose its credibility and may be considered as void.
According to Article 16, all citizens are given the same amount of rights regarding employment or participation in public services. Conditions don’t apply to this right, which means that every citizen is entitled to enlist in the public or private sector.
The System of State Government
To get a bird’s eye view of India’s political structure, it’s vital to have a glimpse into the features of the Parliamentary Government.
- The President of India is a nominal execute, while the Prime Minister takes the role of a real executive
- As it is with most European Countries, the political party that wins the elections forms the government, and the head of it is designated as the Prime Minister
- As a socialist country, there is a collective responsibility for the actions taken
- Political Homogeneity
- Double Membership, which means that the ministers belong to both executive and legislature bodies
- The Prime Minister is evidently in charge of the country
- The President can act upon the Prime Minister’s recommendations to dissolve the Lower House (Lok Sabha)
- The Ministers love and embrace secrecy, and are not allowed to share any information about the proceedings
The United States of America represents the oldest federation in the world, founded in 1787 after the revolution. This new way of forming a country emerged as a result of defiance to the British Rule. It’s strange because, when India slipped from British’s grasp, a similar governing method was established.
The state government is comprised of the following entities:
- Chief Minister
- State Council of Ministers
- State Legislature
- High Court
- Subordinate Courts
- Special Status of Jammu & Kashmir
- Special Provisions for Some States
Although this may seem enough for foreigners, if you are Indian, reading the book would be in your best interest. We love the profoundness of it, and how it relates to the ordinary everyday person who depends on these acts.
Key Lessons from “Indian Polity”1. Limitations on Free Markets 2. Less Corruption 3. Support for young Indians
Limitations on Free MarketsAs Non-Indians, we cannot be 100% sure of the following, but it seems like the socialist reality threatens to hinder India’s scalable economic potential.
Giving more freedom, will relieve many Indians of their plight, and improve their wellbeing.
Less CorruptionThe current way of governing the nation’s resources opens a lot of room for corruption to flourish.
Our guy in Bengaluru told us about the inequality of opportunity even though it’s guaranteed in the Constitution.
Many Indians claim that having a college degree is not enough to get a decent job.
Support for young IndiansI would say that this is not India’s problem but a global one.
Governments, thrown up throughout the world should increase their support for the unemployed population.
Like this summary? We’d Like to invite you to download our free 12 min app, for more amazing summaries and audiobooks.
"Indian Polity Quotes"[bctt tweet="The Constitutional Committee should be headed by a distinguished jurist who enjoys esteem and respect in the state and in the rest of the country." username="get12min"]
[bctt tweet=“The ideal of justice—social, economic and political—has been taken from the Russian Revolution.” username=“get12min”]
[bctt tweet=“The Parliament is empowered to legislate on any subject of the State List if Rajya Sabha passes a resolution to that effect in the national interest.” username=“get12min”]
[bctt tweet=“Indian Union is a unitary state with subsidiary federal features rather than a federal state with subsidiary unitary features.” username=“get12min”]
Our Critical ReviewIt took as an awful lot of time to understand how the Indian system operates.
As one of those countries with unlimited potential, we sincerely hope that Indians will reach its technological, economic, and spiritual peak.
On the other hand, we firmly believe that you’ll give this book a shot, and perhaps learn more of Indian rise to political respect.