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Independence Day 2023: How Preamble became foundation of Independent India

Independence Day

As Independence Day 2023 is approaching, here is all you need to know about the Preamble of the Indian Constitution and how it is the base of Independent India.


Central to comprehending the essential ideals, principles, and aims that the people of India aimed to attain through the adoption of the Constitution is the preamble. This preamble served as a pathway to introduce the “social revolution” and its associated transformative goals.

The Indian Constitution holds the distinction of being the world’s lengthiest written constitution, a 73-year journey that stands as a remarkable narrative for the Indian Republic. Within its preamble lie the ideals intricately entwined with the constitutional tenets, the achievement of which is pivotal for the establishment of a liberated and equitable society in India. The breadth and objectives of the Indian Constitution can be comprehended by delving into the significance of each word within the preamble. Hence, it becomes crucial to delve into the concept, attributes, evolution, and rationale behind the inclusion of the preamble within the Indian Constitution.

What is Preamble?

As per Oxford Dictionary, “preamble” is defined as “the introductory part of a statute or deed, stating its purpose, aims, and justification”. The word preamble in English evolved from “praeambulus”, which means “going before”. The preamble in a nutshell is a statement that is often used in the beginning of the Constitution or any other legislation to express the constitutional and legislative aspirations and justifications.

Preamble of Indian Constitution

The Indian struggle for independence was rooted in cherished ideals that eventually evolved into the fundamental principles underpinning the Indian Constitution. The Constituent Assembly had the privilege of gaining insights from and refining its understanding through the study of various constitutions adopted by nation-states worldwide up to that point. As a result, the architects of the Indian Constitution meticulously engaged in a methodical process of identifying and juxtaposing these principles, selecting and incorporating those that best aligned with India’s needs and circumstances. These values find a reflective resonance in the preamble of the Indian Constitution.

Characteristics of Preamble under Indian Constitution

The initial three words of the Indian Constitution, “We the People,” were borrowed from the United States Constitution’s preamble. This phrase symbolizes the central position of political sovereignty held by the people of India. The preamble asserts that the Indian populace has solemnly resolved to establish India as an autonomous sovereign nation with democratic and republican principles, governed through secular methods, and striving for socialist objectives. The terms “Socialist” and “Secular” were introduced into the preamble through the 42nd Amendment to the Indian Constitution in 1976.

The Indian Constitution’s preamble also affirms the assurance of socio-economic and political justice for its citizens, ensuring each individual’s liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith, and worship. It embodies the yearning for equality in both status and opportunity among Indian citizens. Additionally, the preamble underscores the significance of preserving India’s unity and integrity, fostering fraternal bonds among its people. Moreover, it highlights the value of human dignity, a concept constitutionalized under the Indian Constitution through judicial interpretations as a facet of the Right to Life under Article 21.

How did Preamble emerged in Indian Constitution?

It was the Objectives Resolution moved in the Constituent Assembly on the 13th of December 1946 by Jawaharlal Nehru which became the primary source of the preamble. The Objectives Resolution was adopted on the 22nd of January, 1947 by the Assembly. After extensive debates on the wording of the preamble, the final version of the preamble was adopted by the Assembly on the 26th of November, 1949, and came into force on the 26th of January, 1950.

Why Preamble is required?

The Indian constitution’s preamble holds the key to grasping the fundamental principles and objectives that India’s people aimed to achieve through its adoption. It serves as a guiding beacon when interpreting the constitution’s texts during instances of ambiguity or conflict. While courts acknowledged its vital role, its status within the constitution varied: in one instance, it wasn’t deemed an integral part, while in another, it was upheld as amendable within the “Basic Structure of Constitution” framework. Despite its integral significance, the preamble doesn’t function as a source of power or restriction; rather, it acts like illuminating sunlight, clarifying constitutional interpretations amid uncertainties.

Read Also: Rabindranath Tagore: First Nobel Prize of India

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