Constitutional Design

Nelson Mandela was the leader of the African National Congress (ANC), who struggled against the apartheid policies of the white South African government. Mandela received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993. The Struggle against apartheid bore fruit and led South Africa towards democracy. The new Constitution of South Africa was formed. Once the apartheid era came to an end, there was a complete transformation in South Africa. The country is now seen as a model of democracy by the world.

An important question that arises is what is the need of a constitution? Well, the constitution specifies and limits the powers of government. It also expresses the aspirations of people. As in the case of South Africa, the Indian Constitution too was written in difficult times. The drafting of the Indian Constitution was done by the Constituent Assembly, which was a body of elected representatives. The idea of Constituent Assembly was first conceived by Mahatma Gandhi. The Constituent Assembly was formed as per Cabinet Mission Plan, 1946. Dr. B.R. Ambedkar was the Chairman of the Drafting Committee.

The dream and philosophy of Indian Constitution is to remove all inequalities. The basic values of the Indian Constitution are included in the Preamble. India has been declared to be a sovereign, socialist, secular democratic republic. It guarantees justice, liberty, equality and fraternity. The Constitution is not merely a statement of values and philosophies, but also embodies these values into institutional arrangements. The Indian Constitution was adopted on 26 November 1949. But it came into effect on 26 January 1950.

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