UPSC Mains Daily Answer Writing (24-10-2022)

UPSC Mains Daily Answer Writing

Questions

Q1.The philosophical underpinnings of the Indian Constitution can be best understood through its preamble inspired by the Objectives Resolution in the constituent assembly. Elaborate. (150 words)         10 marks

Q2. Federal tensions in India highlight the need for reforming the Seventh Schedule through the addition, removal and appropriate placement of entries. Discuss. (250 words)  15 marks


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Model Solutions

Q1.The philosophical underpinnings of the Indian Constitution can be best understood through its preamble inspired by the Objectives Resolution in the constituent assembly. Elaborate. (150 words) 10 marks

Model Structure
Introduction:

  • The Preamble is the keynote to the Constitution, that embodies the basic philosophy and fundamental values on which our Constitution is based.
  • It draws heavily from the vision of the founding fathers of our Constitution, as documented in the historic Objectives Resolution adopted by the Constituent Assembly on 22nd January 1947.

Main Body:

  • Preamble as a derivative of the Objectives Resolution
    • The historic Objectives Resolution envisioned the sovereign republic of India, as a union of states that derives its power & authority from the people.
    • It also delved into aspects of the division of powers between the states and the Union.
    • It guaranteed and secured social, economic and political justice.
      • Equality of status and opportunities and equality before law.
      • Fundamental freedoms – of speech, expression, belief, faith, worship, vocation, association and action – subject to law and public morality.
    • It assured provision of safeguards for minorities, backward classes and tribals as well.
  • Preamble as the philosophical framework guiding the Indian Constitution
    The Preamble is a guiding light to the minds of the makers of our Constitution. For a proper appreciation of the aims & aspirations embodied in our Constitution, we must turn to the expressions contained in the Preamble.
  • Sovereign: The Preamble envisages a sovereign India that is free to conduct its own affairs without control from any other state or external power.
  • Republic: It means vesting of political sovereignty in the people and thus India has an elected head called the President.
  • Democratic: It envisages not just political but social democracy as well.
  • Justice: The ideal of political, economic and social justice is sought to be achieved through universal adult suffrage, creation of welfare state, removal of social inequalities etc.
  • Liberty: The Constitution guarantees these rights against all authorities of the state in the form of freedom of thought, belief, expression, faith and worship [Articles 19, 25-28] subject to certain restrictions like morality, public health and order etc.
  • Equality: The ideals of equality of status and opportunity envisaged are guaranteed by the Constitution that seeks to banish all inequality through fundamental right to equality [Articles 14-18], directive principles of the state policy [Article 39] and other similar provisions.
  • Fraternity: The Preamble calls for a spirit of brotherhood amongst all sections of people. This has sought to be achieved by enshrining the ideals of a ‘secular’ state.
    • Besides, the Constitution assures the dignity of the individual through provision of justiciable fundamental rights and certain directives like Article 39(a), 42 & 43.
    • By including Article 51A, the Constitution makes it a fundamental duty of the citizens to uphold the unity & integrity of the nation.

Conclusion

  • Thus, we see that the ideals contained in the Objectives Resolution, were embodied in the Preamble.
  • These ideals went on to shape the political philosophy of the Indian Constitution in subsequent stages.
  • Consequently, these determined the nature and course of the India in the forthcoming years as a liberal, democratic, egalitarian and secular nation.

Q2. Federal tensions in India highlight the need for reforming the Seventh Schedule through the addition, removal and appropriate placement of entries. Discuss. (250 words) 15 marks

Model Structure
Introduction

  • The Constitution of India under Article 246 divides the subject matters on which the laws can be made by the Parliament and by the Legislatures of States. or
  • The Seventh Schedule contains this division of subjects, distributed into three lists i.e. the ‘Union List’, the ‘State List’ and the ‘Concurrent List’.

Main Body:

  • Demand for reform
    • Division of subjects in the Schedule is skewed towards the Centre, giving it unbridled power.
      • Union list having maximum number of subjects along with most important ones like defense, international relation etc.
    • Undue centralization, with the Center misusing inter-linked entries and occupying needlessly excessive fields in the Concurrent List entries, distorts the federal structure.
      • States allege the Center's role in agriculture reforms.
    • The needs of governance have evolved over time that have not been reflected in the current distribution of subjects.
  • Some of the proposed changes include:
    • Addition of themes
      • Disaster management: Not mentioned explicitly, this subject can be added under the concurrent list.
        • Though traditionally a domain of the state government, the financial, technical and logistical support of the center is equally important, as seen in the COVID19 pandemic.
      • Consumer protection: Power to legislate over this subject is scattered across several entries in a piecemeal manner.
      • Emerging technologies: like Artificial Intelligence, it is crucial that their degree of regulation is identified, that can be explicitly mentioned under concurrent list.
      • Environmental protection: There is absence of a unified entry on environmental protection.
        • Legislative competence on this subject is drawn from various sources.
    • Removal of entries like:
      • Entry 37, List III: Boilers.
      • Entry 26, List I: Lighthouses, including lightships, beacons and other provisions for the safety of shipping and aircraft.
      • Entry 34, List I: Courts of Wards for the estates of rulers of Indian states.
      • Entry 27, List III: Relief and rehabilitation of persons displaced from their original place of residence by reason of the setting up of the Dominions of India and Pakistan.
    • Appropriate placement like:
      • Labor: Labor conditions cannot be uniform in a heterogeneous country like India. Therefore, it should be the sole domain of the states.
      • Land: Although mentioned explicitly under state list. It overlaps with:
        • Acquisition and requisition of property (entry 42 of the concurrent list).
        • Transfer of property other than agricultural land (entry 6 of concurrent list.)
      • Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: Since practices relating to animals form part of the local communities practices and therefore should be regulated by states.

Conclusion

  • Any modification to the Seventh Schedule should observe and adhere to the principles of unity and integrity, balanced economic development, cultural diversity and responsive governance.
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