The Preamble of the Constitution, which was primarily focused on the Objective
by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, was accepted by the Constituent Assembly
on January 22nd 1947. The Preamble was constituted to examine the basic
principles, rules and parameters of the Constitution of India. It acts as a
guide to the Constitution. It basically sets the flow map on which the further
provision to be made accordingly.
- KM Munshi called Preamble as Horoscope of Constitution
- Thakur Das Bhargava called Preamble as Soul of the Constitution
- NA Palkivala called Preamble Identity card of the Constitution
The Preamble of the Constitution focuses upon five principle terms that signify
Indian heritage and values are Sovereign, Socialist, Secular, Democratic and
Republic. The main objective of the preamble is to uphold these five Principle
terms at a prior level.
The Preamble further empowers the citizens and makes the system of Justice more
equitable or justified towards the people of India. The objective terms of the
Preamble, which includes Justice, Equality, Liberty and Fraternity, is
emphasized at a more significant level.
The provisional or legal language of the Preamble of the Constitution of India:
"WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a
SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its
JUSTICE, social, economic and political;
LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith, and worship;
EQUALITY of status and of opportunity; and to promote among them all
FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of
IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this 26th day of November 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT,
ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION".
Buildup and emergence of the Preamble of the Constitution:
The initial phase of the Preamble of the Indian Constitution had been adopted by
US Constitution. In contrast, the ideals of Liberty, Fraternity and
Equality have been adopted by the French Fraternity. The only amendment made in
the Preamble was materialized during the 42nd amendment, introduced on December
18th, 1976. The concerned amendment added three words (Secular, Sovereign and
Integrity) to constitute fresh provision and strengthen the directing nature of
After around 12-13 years since the inception of Preamble, it was appealed to
make Preamble a part of the Constitution in the 1960's Berubari Union
. Still, it was denied by the Apex Court to adopt Preamble as a part of the
Constitution. After a long span, in the Kesavananda Bharti case
, SC changed its
previous verdict and adopted the Preamble as an essential part of the
Constitution in its Preface. In the LIC of India case, Apex Court recalls its
decision made in the Kesavnanda Bharti case.
Principle terms of the Preamble:
The word sovereign means Independent or Supreme, which reflects the
independent authority of the State. The State is Supreme and has control over
every subject while working within the Constitutional or legal limits. The State
cannot be restrained by any authority or external power but needs to work within
In Synthetic & Chemicals Ltd. V the State of Uttar Pradesh
, it was held by the
Apex Court that the State could possess its control or power over each aspect
but needs to be within limits prescribed by the Constitution. The Court even
discussed the differentiation of External and Internal Sovereignty.
Socialist: During the emergency period, the word socialist was added to the
Preamble of the Indian Constitution. It simply means awarding equal
opportunities to the people and believing in cooperation by the public and
hence, serving the people.
In Excel Wear v Union of India
, it was held that with the inception of this word
into the Preamble, it aimed to pull out judgments in favour of Nationalization
and State ownership of the Industries. For the fulfilment of the Principle of
Socialism and social justice, no one can ignore the rights and liberties of
different sections of Society mainly private owners.
The Concept of Secularism is pinned in the Preamble of India with the advent of
the 42nd amendment. Secularism recognizes equal rights and liberties of all
religions and promotes religious tolerance without any discrimination over
worship, faith and religious practice. The concerned provision also said that
India has no official religion.
Components or provisions contributing to promoting Secularism:
Article 14: Equality before the law
Article 15: Abolishing discrimination based on caste, gender, race, religion and
place of birth.
Article 24 to 28: Contributing Freedom in a religious manner
It eventually failed to promote the true sense of Secularism, which can only be
possible by implementing Article 44: Uniform Civil Code in DPSP (Directive
Principles of State Policy) mentioned in part IV.
The term democratic is made by two words Demos
, which mean people, and Kratos
which means authority; that's why also called People's Authority. The concept
talks about people as the country's population has and the largest share in the
ruling Government. The people of the country participate in the election process
with their valuable votes to preserve the idea and make the choice of Countrymen
In Mohan Lal V District Magistrate of Rai Bareilly
, in this case, it was very
well held that it depends upon the population of the country to vote and elect
the representative for the country. The Minority must also be given rights
accordingly by following the principles embedded in Article 14 of the
Constitution of India, which further emphasize the concept of Democracy.
The term Republic is originated from res publica
, which means public property
or authority. Indian Constitution represents India as a Republic form of
Government. The republic government is not an advocator of the hereditary or
nepotistic rule of enthroning like king or queen onto the Prime Ministerial post
or any other highest authority that directly deals with the public.
The above mentioned five strengthening principles of the Preamble enable India
as the largest Democracy in the world, which is nourished with the vital
principles of the rule by considering people of the country at a prior level.
The Preamble of the Constitution respects the principles of Justice, Equality,
Liberty and Fraternity by setting aside the criteria of disharmony and
Ideals of the Preamble:
Justice:The term Justice in the Preamble is attached with its elements of Social,
Economical and Political and is further being affirmed by several provisions of
the Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles of State Policy (DPSP). Justice
is one of the most significant essentials of maintaining peace within the
Society and among citizens.
Social Justice: Social justice is an essential component of Justice as it is only there to
satisfy people's interests in the course of availing the Justice against the
harsh measures of Society. Discrimination, whether based on caste, religion,
culture, creed, can also be categorized under Social injustice. The
eradication of all types of deformities within the Society is also a crucial
part of touching or availing the soul of equity or impartiality
Economic Justice: This type of Justice is categorizing people based on the
parameters of parity among the distribution of income, wealth and economic
status. The promotion of a feeling of equality is fulfilled through the zero
discrimination policy towards the man and women of the Nation.
Political Justice: Political Justice means giving all people free, fair and
equal rights to participate in political opportunities. Every person has an
equal right of access or approach over political offices and assumes equal
participation in the government process.
Equality:The term equality means that no section of Society has any special provision or
privilege, and each section of Society must be treated indistinguishably whether
they are based on class, caste, culture, religion or racially identity.
Our Constitution guarantees us equality through:
- Article 14: Equality before the law
- Article 15: Prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste,
sex and place of birth
- Article 16: Equality of opportunity in the matter of public employment
But, still many sects of society are alienated from the principle of
availing equality. Some strict rules and laws are needed to be made to stop this
cruel injustice with the Equality principle. Many people had discriminatory behaviour with backward classes, women and sometimes practised in availing job
The reservation policy in some cases didn't meet with the principle of equality.
In the State of Madras VS Champakam Dorairajan case
, the government order
provided caste-based reservations to college seats and jobs. The court held that
providing these types of reservations depicts the violation of Article 29 (2)
and Article 15 of the Constitution.
The concerned term points out that every person belonging to this Nation should
carry the absolute right and liberty to have their personal view or practice
over faith, worship, religion, politics and several other practices not contrary
to the law. This ideal also promotes no unreasonable restriction policy over
citizens in terms of thoughts, feelings and views.
To demonstrate, suppose a person who is arguing with a traffic police officer
over not wearing a helmet and saying it's his life who are they to restrict him
and our constitution grants us the right to liberty. Another instance is that if
a person commits rape and says that it's his life whatever he wants to do he can
do as the constitution grants him the right to practice liberty.
In both cases, the scope of Public interest overlaps the person's liberty as the
move is defined to save a person himself or become a threat to society too.
Personal liberty needs to be sacrificed in some cases where Public good and
Utilitarian theory applies. Thus, liberty doesn't mean to do whatever a person
wants to do; a person can do anything permitted or lies within limits prescribed
by the law.
In R. Muthukrishnan VS R. Mallika case
, it has been held by the court that no
one is deprived of their Fundamental right guaranteed in Article 19 and 21 but,
for a movement in a vehicle no person can claim the violation of the fundamental
right and drive as so desires, there should be certain reasonable restrictions.
There are certain restrictions and guidelines enlisted in MV act for driving a
The term fraternity promotes the feeling of oneness, brotherhood and generates
emotional attachment towards the country and its people. The concept of
Fraternity promotes the feeling that everyone is the sons/daughters of the same
soil so, they have to remain connected with each other without any
discrimination based on caste, religion, creed and gender.
Consequently, the Preamble of the Constitution of India is being adopted as a
guiding principle that directs the people and law not to go contrary to the
principle terms and ideals of the Preamble. The Preamble safeguards the norms of
Justice, Equality, Liberty and Fraternity among people through its guiding
Although the existence of many disparities among the Citizens of the country,
the provisions of the Preamble still gave us hope of betterment and endeavor to
restrict anti-social elements. The legal fraternity collectively has to conquer
over all the drawbacks existing in the system, must attempt to diminish the
harsh effect of bigotry and wickedness over innocents.