Bharat rose to Independence in 1947. The independence came after being in the prison of slavery and pain subjected by the British Empire for nearly two centuries. This journey began in 1857 with the first war of independence. 1934 was the first year when the idea of the Constituent Assembly was first served by M.N. Roy in the meeting of INC. This assembly was to create the Constitution for Independent India. This blog is not the analysis of the Constitution. Instead, this blog is about the criticisms of the Indian constitution.
The Indian Constitution
The first meeting of the Constituent Assembly was held on 9th December 1946. It was in New Delhi, in constitution hall. It took the assembly two years eleven months and seventeen days to complete the drafting of the Indian Constitution. 26th November 1949 was when the Indian constitution was adopted by the constituent assembly. The constitution came to force on 26th January 1950.
Interestingly, the constitutions of different nations across the globe are of various types. If interested, kindly read our blog on 4 Constitution Types – Written, Unwritten, Rigid And Flexible to know more.
The Indian constitution holds the record of the longest constitution of the world. With 1,49,385 words, it is referred to as the finest constitution in the world. Various best provisions invested in it had been adopted from the various constitution of the various countries. Though the best constitution in the world, definitely our constitution comes with its own sets of criticisms.
“I am quite prepared to say that I shall be the first person to burn it out. I do not want it,”
– Father of Indian Constitution, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar on Indian Constitution
The Criticisms of The Indian Constitution
#1 – Gargantuan piece of the document–
The foremost criticisms of the Indian constitution would be its detailings. The Indian Constitution is often criticized as too detailed and containing too many unnecessary elements. This makes the constitution an elephant in size.
Adding to the criticisms of the Indian constitution. A British Constitutionalist, Ivor Jennings, in his “Come characteristics of The Indian Constitution” wrote that the provisions borrowed were not always well-selected and that the constitution, generally speaking, was too long and complicated.
Also, ‘H.V. Kamath’, a member of the Constituent Assembly in the assembly debates spoke, “The emblem and the crest that we have selected for our assembly is an elephant. It is perhaps in consonance with that our constitution too is the bulkiest that the world has produced.” Again, he added that- “I am sure that, the house (constituent assembly) does not agree that we should make the constitution an elephantine one”.
#2 – Anti-Indian Constitution –
Kengal Hanumanthaiah, a member of the constituent assembly, in the assembly debate said, “We wanted the music of Veena or Sitar, but here we have the music of an English Band. That was because or constitution-makers were educated that way”.
Loknath Mishra, another member said, “It is an imitation of the west, much more it is the slavish surrender to the west.”
Though there were many more critics, Indian constitution is said to be anti-Indian. It does not reflect the culture or tradition of the Indian people. More-over the ones who were in the procedure of making of the constitution had their education in a foreign land which eliminated the chance of Indian essence in the constitution.
#3 – Heaven for Lawyers
Sir Ivor Jennings had called the Indian constitution a lengthy and humongous piece of the document. He also called it a “lawyer’s paradise”. Too complicated document with hard to decipher phraseologies made it a complex document.
Also, the constitution was framed too legalistic. Its language could be bent as per lawyers convenience, making it a heaven for lawyers.
In the assembly debate, H.K. Maheswari said, “The draft tends to make people more litigious, more inclined to go to law courts, less truthful, and less likely to follow the methods of truth and non-violence. If I may say so, the draft is really a lawyer’s paradise. It opens up vast avenues of litigation and will give our able and ingenious lawyers plenty of work to do’’.
#4 – Shoplifted or borrowed constitution
Everyone who criticizes the Indian constitution would agree to this. Every critic first criticises that the Indian Constitution is a borrowed constitution. Or the one which has been stolen by the makers of this constitution.
Also, the provisions of the document had been only amended as per requirement. Nothing new or creative had been done while making the constitution. This fact just adds to the criticisms of the Indian Constitution.
#5 – Impact of ‘Government of India Act,1935
The majority of provisions in the Indian constitution had been directly copied from the Government of India Act,1935.
A point to note is that the Britishers in-charge of Indian colony had passed the resolution to govern India as per their ideas and their convenience. They desired to govern India as per their convenience. This was done by ridiculing the Indian customs and traditions too. However, the makers of the Indian constitution ruled out this aspect and had the majority of the Act in the constitution.
With several amendments made, our constitution has come a long way. India is soon going to celebrate its 72nd Republic Day. We are also on our path to progress. Meanwhile, you could view our blog Why is the Indian Economy Still Developing?