Mains Daily Question
Oct. 12, 2020

  1. What are the basic values enshrined in the Preamble of our Constitution? How relevant are these values in the present time?

Approach:

  • In the Introduction part write about the Preamble and the values enshrined in the Preamble.

  • Then briefly explain some of the important values mention in the Preamble

  • After that explain how they are relevant in the present time

  • Conclude appropriately

Model Answer

Answer

The Preamble of the Constitution is a brief introductory statement which reflects the fundamental values and the philosophy on which the Constitution is based. It embodies the ideals and aspirations of the people of India.

Values Enshrined in Preamble

The Preamble talks about the nature of Indian polity as sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic republic and envisages that the objectives of Constitution is to secure justice, liberty, equality, fraternity, and dignity for its citizens. These words of Preamble, in totality, aptly describe the values that the makers of Constitution have enshrined in Constitution.

  1. The term “Sovereignty” implies that India is internally supreme, not subjected to external power or control.

  2. The principle aim of Socialistic value system is to eliminate inequality of income, status, and standards of living.

  3. By Secularism, the Constitution means that India is neutral in religious matters and treats all religions impartially.

  4. The terms Democratic Republic means that the government will be run by the method of discussion and persuasion.

  5. The Democracy in India is not only from political viewpoint (through exercise of universal adult suffrage), but also from social standpoint. So, Preamble envisages not only a democratic form of government but also a democratic society infused with the spirit of justice, liberty, equality and fraternityas its values and ideals.

Contemporary Relevance of Values Enshrined in Preamble

The basic values enshrined in our Preamble are co-terminus with the ideals and aspirations of the freedom struggle. Nevertheless, these values are very much relevant today because these founding ideologies are slowly being defeated as we have already deviated from it considerably -

  1. The new world order is marked by the expansionist tendency of few countries, across the land and maritime domain. To safeguard the sovereignty of nation is even more important these days. India has done well in dealing with Chinese incursion along LAC, both domestically as well as internationally by garnering support from world powers.

  2. In view of the persistent communal tensions and riots on the basis of religion, secular values are more relevant today. An illustration in point is the protest movement against CAA and NRC, which creates internal rifts between communities, distort law & order scenario, and put a dent on the Country’s image internationally by projecting it as intolerant society.

  3. Although we have achieved political democracy, we are yet to achieve social democracy (justice, liberty, equality and dignity of person) and economic democracy (reducing economic inequalities).

  4. Persistent and increasing inequality in a society shows that the principle of economic justice has failed to realise its objectives. As per Oxfam Report 2020, India's richest 1 % hold more than four-times the wealth held by bottom 70 % of country's population.

  5. The discrimination against minorities, SCs/STs, Women etc is visible every day in Indian society.

  6. The shocking aspect of hunger is that in Global Hunger Index 2019, India ranks 102nd out of 117 qualifying countries, even behind the totalitarian regime of North Korea and war-ravaged Iraq. The high malnutrition level among children, women and other vulnerable groups is worrisome. This shows how economic & social justice is being denied to a majority of population, violating the basic ideology of our Preamble.

Need for Course Correction

The above illustrations clearly depict how we have failed miserably to live up to the expectations of our founding fathers. The further weakening of constitutional values is going to threaten the idea of India that evolved from a complex mix of cultures, religions, regions etc, with social justice, secularism, liberty and equality as its core principles. Thus, there is a need to lay emphasis on basic social liberal ideology, supported by a strong foundation for positive discrimination intervention by the government. There is a dire need to bring about changes in socio-psychological- politico mindset of the individuals, the communities, and the rulers to develop an egalitarian and just society.

Subjects : Polity
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