Constitution of India – Introduction to Constitution, Ideological Basis

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

The constitution of India is a distinctive document containing 470 articles. The articles have been summed up in 25 parts & 12 schedules. But it contained a total of 1,45,000 words making it the lengthiest constitution in the world. It was adopted in 1949 & the final draft of the constitution of India was introduced in the Constituent Assembly by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. He is considered the father of the Indian constitution. The constitution of India came into effect on 26th January 1950.

Since the constitution of India was adopted in the year 1949, it is said to have undergone amendments 105 times. A total of 126 Amendment Bills have been introduced in the Parliament so far including the 7th Amendments, the 42nd, 44th, 73rd & 74th amendments.

Constitution of India

The Constitution of India is a unique blend of all the fundamental principles that guide a country’s administration. It lays down all the rules and guidelines outlining the duties and rights of the government as well as the citizens of the country. The constitution of India has been inspired by the constitution of various countries, which is why it is also sometimes referred to as aBag of Borrowing’.

Many features of the Indian constitution have been inspired by other countries. To understand the various features of the constitution of India that have been inspired by others, read about the comparison of Indian constitution with other countries.

Introduction to the Constitution of India: Preamble

A Preamble is the most important aspect of a constitution. The constitution of India begins with the Preamble followed by the entire guidelines presented in the form of articles, schedules & parts. The idea of the Preamble has been inspired by the constitution of America who was the first one to introduce it.

  • The Preamble of India has been given by Pandit Nehru as it was based on his ‘Objectives Resolution’ & therefore was passed & introduced by him into the Constituent Assembly.
  • A Preamble is a set of words that introduces and presents a gist of the constitution of India. Certain amendments have been made to the Preamble as well. The words ‘socialist’, ‘secular’, and ‘integrity’ have been added to it. These additions in the Preamble have been made through the 42nd Amendment of Indian Constitution in 1976.

The Preamble can be divided into four sections that provide for the four major elements of the constitution of India.

  • The date when the constitution of India was adopted – 26th November 1949.
  • Mentions the clear objectives of the constitution in the form of ‘justice’, ‘equality’, ‘liberty’, and ‘fraternity’.
  • Mentions the people of India as the source of power to the constitution.
  • States India’s nature as a socialist, sovereign, secular, republican, and democratic state.

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About Indian Constitution: Important Amendments

The Constitution of India is a lengthy document that provides for the basic framework of the country by laying down guidelines for the government. In simple words it is a guide that acts as a rule book for the state by stating the laws & principles based on which a state should be governed. Since its adoption, the constitution of India has been amended 105 times to make it suit the needs of the country.

There are three types of amendments that can be made to the Indian constitution. Out of these three, the second and third types are governed by Article 368.

  • The first type of constitutional amendment is the one that can be passed through a “simple majority” in each of the two houses of Parliament.
  • The second type of amendment is the one that can be brought into effect by Parliament through a “special majority” in each house.
  • The third amendment type includes the ones that need validation by minimum half of the state legislatures along with the “special majority” in each house.

List of Amendments in Indian Constitution

As discussed earlier, till date a total of 105 amendments have been made to the Indian constitution. These amendments saw a couple of significant changes. Here are a few important amendments of Indian constitution that were passed to bring certain changes that were required for the good of the country.

Important Amendments of Constitution of India Year
First Constitutional Amendment Act 1951
Second Amendment Act of Indian Constitution 1952
Fourth Amendment Act 1955
Seventh Amendment Act 1956
Ninth Amendment Act 1960
10th Amendment of Indian Constitution 1961
12th Constitutional Amendment 1962
13th Amendment Act 1962
14th Amendment in Constitution of India 1966
21st Amendment Act 1967
24th Amendment Act 1971
31st Amendment Act 1972
35th Amendment Act 1974
36th Amendment Act 1975
42nd Amendment Act 1976
44th Amendment Act of Constitution of India 1978
61st amendment Act, 1889
74th Amendment Act 1992
86th Amendment Act 2002
92nd Amendment Act 2003
97th Amendment Act 2011
101st Amendment Act 2016
102nd Amendment Act of Indian Constitution 2018
103rd Amendment Act 2019
104th Amendment Act 2020
105th Amendment Act 2021

Salient Features of Indian Constitution

The constitution of India is a famous constitution which is quite flexible in its nature. It provides for a variety of amendments that can be done & have been done to it for various reasons. The document is a mix of the best features inspired from the constitution of different countries in the world. It can be said that there are various sources of Indian Constitution that make it one of the best constitutions today.

The Indian Constituent Assembly tried its best to incorporate the best principles & guidelines that suit the needs of our country. Here are a few salient features of the constitution of India.

  • Lengthiest Constitution in the world
  • An insightful Preamble that provides for the goals & objectives of the constitution
  • Provides for a federal system of government in India but with an exception of a unitary bias. The states can not break away from the federation.
  • The system of democracy is another feature of the Indian constitution.
  • Emergency provisions
  • Parliamentary system of government
  • States India as a republic
  • Clearly provides the fundamental rights and duties for the citizens
  • Directive Principles of State Policy
  • Single citizenship
  • Separate judiciary system which is free of Legislature and Executive
  • Flexible constitution which is open to amendments

Who has Written the Constitution of India?

The constitution of India was written by Prem Behari Narain Raizada. He is said to be the main calligrapher of the constitution. The English version of the constitution of India was originally handwritten by Prem Behari in an italic style which was further decorated and enhanced by other artists. These artists were Beohar Rammanohar Sinha and Nand Lal Bose, both of whom belonged to Shantiniketan.

Raizada was approached by the then Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru to write the constitution of India. He belonged to a family of calligraphers and was born in the year 1901. He has credit to his name for writing the longest constitution in the world. It took him almost six months to write the constitution.

The Hindi version of the Indian constitution was written by Vasant Krishnan Vaidya. This version was also further beautified by Nand Lal Bose. The Indian constitution was framed by a Drafting Committee who was headed by Dr B.R. Ambedkar. It is the longest written constitution as it consists of 22 parts, 8 schedules, and 395 articles.

Significant Provisions of the Indian Constitution

The constitution of India is the lengthiest written document and makes space for any such change that is required for the betterment of the country and its citizens. That proves the flexibility of the Indian constitution which plays a very important role in the functioning of a nation. Mentioned below are the significant provisions of the Indian constitution.

  • Preamble
  • Fundamental Rights
  • Fundamental Duties
  • Directive Principles of State Policy (DPSP)
  • Emergency Provisions

Structure of the Indian Constitution

The constitution of India is a sacred document that guides the smooth functioning and administration of the country. It acts as a book of rules and provides for the basic rights of the citizens & also states the fundamental duties for Indians to perform as responsible citizens.

The basic structure of the constitution of India comprises a Preamble as an introductory text, 470 Articles, 12 Schedules, 25Parts, and 5 appendices. From a UPSC aspirant’s perspective, it is extremely important to have deep knowledge of all the important articles of the Indian Constitution to score well in the polity section.

Constitution of India UPSC

For all the aspirants preparing for the prestigious UPSC examination, the subject of Indian Polity holds utmost importance. The topic of the Indian constitution is the most important while preparing for the UPSC IAS exam. It is advisable to gather the constitution of India UPSC notes and refer to them at the time of exam preparation.

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