42nd Amendment Act 1976: When it is Passed?

By K Balaji|Updated : August 25th, 2022

The 42nd Amendment Act 1976, passed by the Indian National Congress led by Indira Gandhi, is one of the most remarkable amendments to the Indian Constitution passed by the Indian National Congress.

42nd Amendment Act 1976 is also known as the 'Mini-Constitution' as it is believed to have brought many amendments to the Indian Constitution. Here you will understand relevant information about the 42nd Amendment Act 1976 and its relationship with the 44th Amendment Act 1978.

What is the 42nd Amendment Act 1976?

The Indian Constitution is distinctive in both substance and essence. It establishes the rule of law and is generally the land's supreme law. The constituent assembly that drafted our Constitution allowed amendments to make to it over time.

  • As a result, the Indian Constitution as it stands today has undergone significant changes.
  • The general term for the 42nd Amendment Act 1976 is one of the most contentious acts in the history of amendments to the Indian Constitution.

42nd Amendment Act 1976 - Provisional Changes

The 42nd amendment attempted to modify the basic system of the Indian Constitution. Read all amendments obtained by the 42nd Amendment Act 1976, called the mini-constitution.

42nd Amendment Act, 1976 - Preamble

The 42nd amendment act 1976 in the preamble now includes three new words: 'Socialist,' 'Secular,' and 'Integrity'.

New Directives added under Part VI of 42nd Amendment Act 1976

The addition of three new DPSPs to the existing list and the amendment to one:

  • Article 39: to provide opportunities for children's healthy development.
  • Article 39 A: to provide free legal assistance to the poor and to promote equal justice
  • Article 43 A: To ensure worker participation in industry management.
  • Article 48 A: to safeguard forests and wildlife and protect and improve the environment.

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Concurrent List under VII Schedule - 42nd Amendment Act 1976

The transfer of five subjects from the state list to the concurrent list:

  • Education
  • Forests
  • Weights and Measures
  • Protection of Wild Animals and Birds
  • Administration of Justice

Fundamental Duties Under 42nd Amendment Act 1976

The government added Article 51A to the Constitution, which consists of ten Fundamental Duties, based on the recommendations of the Swaran Singh Committee.

  • Note: The addition of the 11th Fundamental Duty by the 86th Constitutional Amendment Act states that a parent or guardian must provide educational opportunities for his or her child or ward between the ages of six and fourteen.

42nd Amendment Act 1976 - Judiciary

  • Limitation to the High Courts' judicial review authority.
  • The provision for the establishment of the All-India Judicial Service.

Addition to Part XIV A (Articles 323A and 323B) in the 42nd Amendment Act 1976

Establishment of 'Administrative tribunals' and 'tribunals for other matters.' Though the 42nd Amendment Act of 1976 is regarded as the most contentious in the history of the Indian Constitution.

Specific provisions listed below have remained in effect for many years and continue to be so today because they are supposed to be beneficial.

  • Free legal aid policy, protection of children and the environment
  • Fundamental duties, etc.
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FAQs on 42nd Amendment Act 1976

  • The 42nd Amendment Act 1976 is a contentious constitutional amendment because it attempted to limit Supreme Court's and the High Court's power while curtailing several other socio-political rights.

  • The 42nd Amendment Act 1976 tried to modify the fundamental structure of the Constitution. It was enacted to reorganize the 7th Amendment to ensure education, forestry, wildlife, and bird protection, and the administration of justice, weights, and measures were assigned to the Concurrent List.

  • The Government enacted the 42nd Amendment Act 1976, officially known as The Constitution (Forty-second Amendment) Act, which was passed during the Emergency (25 June 1975 – 21 March 1977) under the leadership of Indira Gandhi by the Indian National Congress Government.

  • Because of the many amendments made by the 42nd Amendment Act 1976 to the Indian Constitution, the Act is also known as the "Mini-Constitution." The Amendment brought changes in the basic structure of the Constitution, including the 7th Schedule, Preamble, Judicial Powers of HC, and more.

  • The 42nd Amendment Act 1976 in the Preamble added three terms. These were - "Socialist", "Integrity", and "Secular" to the Preamble. A preamble is an introductory and indication statement in a document that describes the record's purpose and underlying principles.

  • There are two major aims of the 42nd Amendment Act 1976. The first one is to decrease the power of the Supreme Court and the High Courts, and the second is to apply the fundamental duties to the nation's citizens.

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