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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Review of Constitution


The working of our Constitution over the years has exposed various weaknesses of the Indian political system and a comprehensive review of the Constitution is necessary.” Do you agree? Give arguments.
Immediately after independence, the Constituent Assembly and its Drafting Committee prepared and adopted the Indian Constitution, which with some changes over the years, has been continuing.
 
Last about six decades of working of the Constitution has exposed certain weaknesses of the Indian political system. At times it is felt by many that a comprehensive review of the Indian Constitution must be carried out to tackle the weaknesses. One of the major weaknesses is that the multi-party system has given scope for so-called ‘horse trading’, which could not be stopped even by the constitutional amendment facilitating the enactment of the Anti-defection Act. Further, it has resulted in evolution of coalition culture, which has increased the political instability of the government.
 
Further, considering the present-day overlaps resulted by the legislative and judicial activism, there has to be a clear demarcation of the boundaries of jurisdiction of the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary. Several people feel that with a view to have strong executive at the national and State levels, the present system of Parliamentary democracy must be replaced by the Presidential form of government where the President (Head of the State) is directly elected by the people, who also becomes the functional head
of the State as well as that of the government.
 
In addition, the empowerment of the States with the overall aim of strengthening the Indian federation is another area on which many political thinkers are unanimous. It is believed that the Indian federal system must also be as close as possible to the US system, so that the regional aspirations of the people are met. It is also felt by many that it is high time that the protection available to the public servants under Article 310 of the Constitution is done away with, so that work culture is inculcated among the government employees.
 
With a view to strengthen the Constitution, most of the above amendments are necessary. But one has to keep in mind and ensure that none of the proposed amendments actually violate Supreme Court Judgments about the ‘basic structure’ of the Constitution. For effecting the change beyond the basic structure, it would perhaps require the prior approval of the Supreme Court and the process may have to be undertaken under the close scrutiny of the apex court.

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