File Copyright Online - File mutual Divorce in Delhi - Online Legal Advice - Lawyers in India

Canadian Constitution: Characteristic Features, Strengths, Weaknesses And Its Impact On Indian Constitution

Canada's highest law is the Canadian Constitution, which includes both written and unwritten elements. It is comprised of important documents such as the Constitution Act of 1867, which outlines the division of powers between federal and provincial governments, and the Constitution Act of 1982, which incorporates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protecting fundamental rights and freedoms. Additionally, conventions, statutes, and court rulings also contribute to the framework of Canada's government, the allocation of powers between federal and provincial bodies, and the protection of individual rights and freedoms.

Characteristic Features:

Its characteristic features are showcased in the following paragraphs:

  1. Constitutional Monarchy: A defining characteristic of the Canadian Constitution is its status as a constitutional monarchy. This means that while Canada has a monarch, her powers are limited by the constitution, and the country is primarily governed by elected leaders.
  2. Division of Powers: The Canadian Constitution establishes a federal system of government, dividing powers between the federal government and the provincial governments. This division is outlined primarily in the Constitution Act, 1867 (also known as the British North America Act), which assigns specific powers to each level of government. On March 29, 1867, the British North America Act received Royal Assent and went into effect on July 1, 1867. This law combined the once separate regions of Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick into a single dominion called Canada.
  3. Charter of Rights and Freedoms: The Canadian Constitution includes the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which guarantees fundamental rights and freedoms to all Canadians. Enacted in 1982 as part of the Constitution Act, the Charter protects rights such as freedom of expression, religion, and equality before the law.
  4. Amending Flexibility: Unlike some other countries with rigid constitutions, the Canadian Constitution is more flexible and can be amended through various processes. Certain parts of the Constitution, such as the division of powers between the federal and provincial governments, require specific procedures for amendment, while others, like the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, have their own amending formula.
  5. Bicultural and Bilingual Character: Reflecting Canada's bilingual and bicultural nature, the Constitution recognizes English and French as the country's official languages. This recognition is enshrined in various parts of the Constitution, including the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Constitution Act, 1867.
  6. Indigenous Right: The Canadian Constitution is unique in that it recognizes and upholds the rights of Indigenous peoples, aiming to address past injustices and promote reconciliation. Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982 specifically acknowledges and affirms the existing Aboriginal and treaty rights of Indigenous peoples within Canada.
  7. Institutional Checks and Balances: The Canadian Constitution includes mechanisms to ensure checks and balances between different branches of government. This helps to prevent any one branch from becoming too powerful.
  8. Judicial Independence: The Canadian Constitution ensures the independence of the judiciary, allowing judges to make fair and impartial decisions without interference from the government.
  9. Recognition of Indigenous Rights: The Canadian Constitution recognizes the rights of Indigenous peoples and their unique relationship with the government. This includes the recognition of treaty rights and the duty to consult with Indigenous communities on matters that may affect them.
  10. Protection of Democratic Principles: The Canadian Constitution upholds democratic principles such as the rule of law, free and fair elections, and the peaceful transfer of power. This ensures that the government remains accountable to the people and their voices are heard.
  11. Supremacy of the Constitution: In Canada, the Constitution holds a position of supremacy, meaning that all laws and government actions must adhere to its provisions. This principle ensures that no branch of government can overstep the boundaries set by the Constitution, and gives the judiciary the power to strike down any laws that are not in accordance with it.
  12. Constitutional Conventions: In addition to the written constitutional provisions, the Canadian Constitution also includes unwritten constitutional conventions. These non-legal rules and practices govern the exercise of constitutional powers and play a crucial role in shaping the country's system of government and the relationships between its institutions.
  13. Federal-Provincial Relations: The Canadian Constitution establishes a complex system of federal-provincial relations. This includes mechanisms for cooperation and conflict resolution between the federal government and the provinces, such as federal-provincial conferences and agreements. The division of powers outlined in the Constitution Act, 1867 further outlines the roles and responsibilities of the federal and provincial governments.
  14. Evolutionary Nature: A notable feature of the Canadian Constitution is its evolutionary nature. Through amendments, judicial interpretations, and political agreements, the Constitution has evolved over time. This adaptability allows it to respond to the changing needs and values of society while maintaining its foundational principles.
In conclusion, the Canadian Constitution reflects the country's unique history, values, and aspirations for governance. Its recognition of Indigenous rights, supremacy, constitutional conventions, federal-provincial relations, and evolutionary nature make it a dynamic and integral part of Canadian society.

The exceptional flexibility of the Canadian Constitution enables it to easily adapt to changing societal demands without the need for extensive revisions. Within its framework, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is enshrined, offering protection against unfair government practices and discrimination and empowering citizens to challenge laws that infringe upon their rights.

Furthermore, the Constitution's allocation of powers between the federal and provincial/territorial governments promotes efficient governance and takes into account regional distinctions, fostering effective administration. Its commitment to upholding the rule of law ensures that government actions are subject to legal examination, promoting stability, accountability, and economic growth within a democratic system.

Criticism towards the Canadian Constitution is directed towards its failure to explicitly acknowledge and incorporate Indigenous peoples, resulting in the disregard of their rights and self-governance despite their historical existence. This exclusion serves as a catalyst for ongoing disputes between Indigenous groups and the government.

Furthermore, the concentration of authority within the federal government raises concerns about the neglect of smaller provinces and territories and its impact on efficient decision-making. The Constitution's incomplete entrenchment also leaves it susceptible to modifications through a mere parliamentary act, which could diverge from the common desire of the populace and weaken its durability.

Its Impact on Indian Constitution:
The Indian Constitution has been heavily influenced by the Canadian Constitution, particularly in terms of the government's structure. This impact can be observed in various aspects such as the implementation of a federal system with a dominant central government, the central government's authority over residual powers, the appointment of state governors by the central government, and the advisory role of the Supreme Court.

This is evident in Article 248 of the Indian Constitution, which grants the Parliament exclusive power to legislate on subjects not included in the Union and State lists. Additionally, Article 143 allows the President to seek the Supreme Court's advice on matters of public interest, and the Court can provide its expert opinion after carefully examining the case.

Written By: Md.Imran Wahab
, IPS, IGP, Provisioning, West Bengal
Email: [email protected], Ph no: 9836576565

Law Article in India

Ask A Lawyers

You May Like

Legal Question & Answers

Lawyers in India - Search By City

Copyright Filing
Online Copyright Registration


How To File For Mutual Divorce In Delhi


How To File For Mutual Divorce In Delhi Mutual Consent Divorce is the Simplest Way to Obtain a D...

Increased Age For Girls Marriage


It is hoped that the Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021, which intends to inc...

Facade of Social Media


One may very easily get absorbed in the lives of others as one scrolls through a Facebook news ...

Section 482 CrPc - Quashing Of FIR: Guid...


The Inherent power under Section 482 in The Code Of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (37th Chapter of t...

The Uniform Civil Code (UCC) in India: A...


The Uniform Civil Code (UCC) is a concept that proposes the unification of personal laws across...

Role Of Artificial Intelligence In Legal...


Artificial intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing various sectors of the economy, and the legal i...

Lawyers Registration
Lawyers Membership - Get Clients Online

File caveat In Supreme Court Instantly