Dr Subhash C Kashyap
Expert, Constitution of India
Expert, Constitution of India
Discuss the Constitution of India with IBNLive: Preamble, Parts I & II
- How do you rank our constitution vis-a-vis the constitution of the other countries? Asked by: Shyam Vadalker
- Our constitution is one of the very best & it has stood the test of time & proved to be most suitable for our needs. Its amenable to change as the changing societal situation requires.
- Why is it a selection of president has become a family business as few major political parties select the canditates for their vested interest and public has no knowledge of the viewpoints of president like in US where there are freqent debates and interactions with the President Asked by: Manush
- Yes it is most unfortunate that the public has no role in electing the President of the republic or even in participating in discussions regarding the same. Some public spirited organisations are getting together at the India International centre on 2nd June to begin the process of giving expression to peoples concerns and expectations without taking any sides for parties or persons.
- Why is it that Indian laws and constitution are very much similar to british era as hundred of years old and are seldom updated to keep pace with changing times which result in friction between cente-state, citizens and sometimes corporates like in recent vodafone judgement so constitution like a law has to be crystal clear Asked by: Rij
- This question raises several issues. First, it is a myth to believe that our constitution is a replica of the British Parliamentary system. Infact we continued the British colonial system as it was developed in India for dividing and ruling over us. The second myth is about there being a centre, a central government or a central legislature. The constitution makers discarded the concept of a central authority. They adopted the term Union in instead. The first part of the constitution describes India as a Union of States & later it speaks of Union-State relations. It is not true that our constitution has not been changing. It had as many as 96 amendments, one every 7th month on an average.
- Why is the Constitution being misused by rich, powerful and criminals to gain entry into institutions like parliament with judiciary being helpless spectator so can't constitution be made powerful so that it can be respected rather than being just a formal document Asked by: Hitesh
- The constitution works on the basic premise that those who operate it through the legislature, the executive & the judiciary are hon'ble men & women of character, ability & integrity. There is nothing wrong with the constitution but the organs of the state are not performing their assigned tasks properly & are often exceding their jurisdictions.
- Do we have a constitutional court where certain parts of the constitution can be changed like for exams nomination of MP's and that is those with criminal backgrounds should be dismiss immediate. Asked by: Nigel De Conceicao
- In India we do not have the system of a separate constitutional court. The supreme court does at times refer important constitutional matters to special constitutional bench consisting of 5 or more judges. Normally, the supreme court only adjudicates in disputes between parties or now also on PIL.
- The most of developing countries, rather developed countries like China, Singapore etc have different system than Democracy. Dont u think, democracy system is pulling down growth of India ? Asked by: Brij
- The question is what we mean by democracy. Even communist countries and states like Singapore call themselves democracies. The ultimate end is the welfare of the people and the emphasis must be both on citizen-friendly good governance and economic justice for all. Any good democracy is for human values and development.
- We consider politicians are the most corrupted, but they have the power to form the constitution and its laws. How can we assure it is flawless? Asked by: KK
- It has become a fashion to blame the politicians for all our ills. It is not only they who are afflicted with the malady of corruption. There are good & honest politicians also even though their tribe is fast dwindling. Our elected representatives reflect the society & its weaknesses. Some systematic reforms are urgently needed to ensure that better representatives are elected.
- Is there any provision in the constitution giving the power of the people to dismiss a government on grounds that a Centre or State government violated the constitution and seeking Presidential rule for a certain period? Asked by: Nigel De Conceicao
- There is no provision in the constitution for Presidential rule at the Union level. At the State level, President's rule may be proclaimed in case of failure of constitutional machinery there. The people do have the ultimate power of the changing the government through elections. Also, in case of violation of the constitution, the courts can be approached.
- Assuming we have a best constitution in place, how to ensure its implementable? Asked by: KK
- Implementation of any constitution depends upon the quality & character of the people who are called upon to operate it from generation to generation. What is needed is to ensure reforms for electing the right kind of law makers. The fault is not in the constitution but in electoral laws & processes.
- There is talk of Lokpal being brought under constitution can you explain the pros and cons of it Asked by: Manav
- I believe merely having a Lokpal as a constitutional authority will not solve the problem of corruption. It does not even strike at the root causes of corruption. It is proposed only as a device for dealing with those charged with corruption. Still, it would be a welcome development.
- Who do you think are the people best placed to make rational and necessary amendments to the constitution for greater good?? Asked by: Fedex
- Under over constitutional schemes amendments to the constitution can be brought about only by Parliament. However, as the supreme representative institution of the people it must be responsive to the urges & needs of the people. Unfortunatly at present there is a tremendous disconnect between the people & the politicians.
- Do you feel that sometimes major decisions are taken at will without any basis like formation and dissolving of Govt and their is too much of horse trading involved like two parties with criminal backgrounds unite to clear each others criminal cases to be in power and maintain harmony at the cost of growth and developement Asked by: Manav
- Yes, unfortunately politics has merely become a struggle for power devoid of all principles. Parties fight for getting to power & remaining there at all costs. All compromises with principles are accepted as compulsions of coaltion politics. Defections, horse-trading, buying of legislators by bribing them with Ministerships or money are deemed permisible. Even yielding to blackmail is ok with the present leadership.
- our constitution give us a fundamental right to live in article 21.Than the penalty of death is how much constitutional? Asked by: sonal
- Every fundamental right under the constitution is subject to some reasonable restrictions in the interest of the security of the state & social good. The restrictions are also codified in the fundamental rights' chapter & have been interpreted by the supreme court by time to time. There are two strong views on the subject of the desirablity or otherwise of death penalty & the matter is still under active consideration in various fora.
- Do you think that by giving a broad interpretation to fundamental rights, almost all issues whether necessarily in judiciary's domain or not are being decided by Supreme Court and there is hardly any space for executive discretion to implement policies according to its principles. It has become judicial discretion rather than executive discretion? Asked by: Jay
- The constitution of India very clearly defines & delimits the jurisdiction & authority of three organs of the state-the legislature, the executive & the judiciary. Unfortunately the legislature does not anymore treat legislation as its main functions, the executive makes laws, the legislatores are more interested in executive powers & the judiciary has often being over-reaching to assume executive & legislative roles on the ground that the other two organs are not performing their roles.
- Which authority is "supreme" in India? The Parliament or the Judiciary? Asked by: Arvind Agarwal
- Every organ of the state is supreme in its own sphere. None of them neither the judiciary nor the legislature can be said to be overall supreme. Their inter-relationship and powers are defined & delimited by the written constitution. Problem arises only when either of them tries to assume the role of others.
More chats with:Dr Subhash C Kashyap
Expert, Constitution of India