Friday 6 September 2013

On Indian morals, when Britishers came to India

CHARLES GRANT, 1746-1823 

Hindoostan, a race of men lamentably degenerate and base,  retaining but a feeble sense of moral obligation . . . governed by  their malevolent and licentious passions . . . and sunk in misery by  their vices.'

Grant's estimate of the morals of the Indians of his  day is no more trustworthy than Miss Mayo's distorted view of  modern India, 1 and he certainly was not justified in making such  a sweeping condemnation of the moral tone of a whole people.   In his defence, however, certain allowances must be made: in  the first place, there is ample testimony that, following on the  break-up of the Mogul empire, India went through a period of  lawlessness and anarchy which was marked by a moral and social  degradation unparalleled in her long history; secondly, Grant was  influenced by the evangelical and humanitarian movements of  his time, and his object was to arouse the sympathies of generous-  minded Englishmen and to induce Parliament and the Directors  to improve and uplift an ignorant and unfortunate people; he was  actuated by the highest and most philanthropic motives, and wrote  'not to excite detestation, but to engage compassion, and make it  apparent that, what speculation may have ascribed to physical and  unchangeable causes, springs from moral sources capable of  correction'.

The causes of the demoralization which he has described may be attributed to the prevalence  of degraded forms of religion and the influence of unscrupulous  priests. It is the last chapter, however, which forms the most  important section of this remarkable pamphlet. Herein Grant  anticipates with uncanny foresight many of the great educational  and not a few of the political reforms which have since been  introduced. In the course of less than 40 pages he points out the  remedies which should be adopted to relieve the deplorable social  and moral conditions which hamper the progress and prosperity  of a people whose best interests he has at heart. The conclusion  at which he eventually arrives may be stated in a few words: evils which are due to ignorance and superstition can most easily  be eradicated by the promotion of knowledge by the establishment  of a sound system of education; to quote his own words, 'the  true cure of darkness is the introduction of light'.

Sadly I find some of it is still true today. Britishers never tried to correct this because of their selfish interests. They have seldom appointed civil servants of Indian origin in their administration. they put up very tough eligibility criteria for getting in. Even when they got selected they were mostly mistreated, rather given inferior status and were not allowed in important decision makings.

During these years of plunder by Britishers most govt. officers who were Indians were doing their job not as their duty but just to earn money. Slowly and slowly they become insensitive, cold-hearted unsympathetic mercenaries devoid of any moral values they had. They were already corrupt by now and the next generation of officers followed the same. It was never checked by the govt.

Even after Independence, policies were never formed to reinstate the moral obligations of individuals but were assumed to be an inherent quality of newly ignited independent Indians. This has once again led to a system of corruption our country faces today, which has also been the root cause of British Raj in India.

If we fail to correct and streamline our conscience of morality in time, as we know it already, they [foreign visitors] came as traders and merchants, now we can suspect them to come as big investment firms which are running the world policies today.

Solution: Morality principle should be defined and put in place in this defining book of governance. Policy matters should be discussed subjectively rather just working around it.

Monday 19 August 2013

(Legislative power of President) Article 123: Passing a bill by ordinance

What is the difference between ordinance and act?

An Act is a bill that was presented in a State legislative home/Parliament of India, passed by both the houses of the State legislature or Parliament, sent for accent of the State Governor or the President of India, and then it becomes an Act.
Whereas ordinance is a legal order or law made by the State Government or the Union Government when the Legislature or Parliament is not in session, this a temporary arrangement made by the said government with regard to such a law & its implementation in the State or the whole of the country as the case may be. Such ordinance is legal & can be implemented for the time being, but it has to be passed by the State legislature or the parliament within six months & made as a proper Act.
Reproducing the original Article 123: 
Central Government Act: Article 123 in The Constitution Of India 1949
123. Power of President to promulgate Ordinances during recess of Parliament
(1) If at any time, except when both Houses of Parliament are in session, the President is satisfied that circumstances exist which render it necessary for him to take immediate action, he may promulgate such Ordinance as the circumstances appear to him to require
(2) An Ordinance promulgated under this article shall have the same force and effect as an Act of Parliament, but every such Ordinance
(a) shall be laid before both House of Parliament and shall cease to operate at the expiration of six weeks from the reassemble of Parliament, or, if before the expiration of that period resolutions disapproving it are passed by both Houses, upon the passing of the second of those resolutions; and
(b) may be withdrawn at any time by the President Explanation Where the Houses of Parliament are summoned to reassemble on different dates, the period of six weeks shall be reckoned from the later of those dates for the purposes of this clause
(3) If and so far as an Ordinance under this article makes any provision which Parliament would not under this Constitution be competent to enact, it shall be void CHAPTER IV THE UNION JUDICIARY
I have put up a question in Quora: Is passing a bill through ordinance undemocratic method?
Recent Instance: Passing of Food security bill 2013

Problem: This bill grants a very unfair way to pass any bill. Like in our case, the President Pranab Mukherjee belongs to the same party as the ruling party and when he has got this special privilege to pass any bill at the ruling party's will it seems some where it is wrong.  He is always going to be biased for the party.

Proposition: If we put a condition that the president should  be a neutral candidate for enjoying this privilege. We could grant this power to the president when he doesn't belong to any of the ruling party or the opposition. And If President is not a neutral candidate then Passing of bill only through the original way of "Debates and Voting" should be adopted.

Saturday 17 August 2013

(Fundamental Duties) Article 51A Elaborating Fundamental Duties

Independence is just a state of mind. We need to get out of this limbo and bring poorna swaraj. If we cannot change acts #RTIamendmentact at our "will" then I dont detect Freedom.

RTI amendment 2013
Parliamentarians took no time in amending CIC's(Central information commission) recommendations on inclusion of political parties under RTI and brought forward Right to Information (Amendment Bill), 2013 to get out of the trouble. This is a serious misuse of a democratic setup. Lawmakers(who themselves belong to major political parties) cannot make laws to please themselves. 
Moreover the govt. officials proposed arguments, supporting this amendment, which are more or less baseless. 
Genuine concerns
There were some genuine concerns about the decision impacting the functioning of parties. A major worry was that though the purpose of the order was to enforce financial transparency, in effect it would force parties to disclose their internal strategic decisions. The problem could have been dealt with by devising a way to safeguard the internal autonomy of the political parties. Instead, the parties banded together to keep themselves entirely out of the purview of the RTI Act.
The Bill tabled in the Lok Sabha proposes an amendment to Section 2 of the RTI Act which clarifies that parties would not be treated as public authorities: “Authority or body or institution of self-government established or constituted by any law made by Parliament shall not include any association or body of individuals registered or recognised as a political party under the Representation of the People Act, 1951.”
The Bill also inserts a new Section 31 in the principal Act which says that the amendment will apply “notwithstanding anything contained in any judgment, decree or order of any court or commission..,” and will prevail over “any other law for the time being in force.” - The Hindu

Not to mention Political Parties consider themselves as non-public authorities. Which directly means that there are some vested interest of their own seeking non disclosure of their information, most prominently Financial details. Parties sponsored by private firms and individuals are always going to make laws to please them. This means that they are going against the democratic setup which was promised on 26 Nov 1949.

What can we do as a citizen: First thing is to elaborate our fundamental duties. Mentioning Article 51A here

Article 51A in The Constitution Of India 1949. 51A. "Fundamental duties" 

51A. Fundamental duties It shall be the duty of every citizen of India (a) to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the national Flag and the National Anthem;
(b) to cherish and follow the noble ideals which inspired our national struggle for freedom;
(c) to uphold and protect the sovereignty, unity and integrity of India;
(d) to defend the country and render national service when called upon to do so;
(e) to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India transcending religious, linguistic and regional or sectional diversities; to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women;
(f) to value and preserve the rich heritage of our composite culture;
(g) to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wild life, and to have compassion for living creatures;
(h) to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform;
(i) to safeguard public property and to abjure violence;
(j) to strive towards excellence in all spheres of individual and collective activity so that the nation constantly rises to higher levels of endeavour and achievement PART V THE UNION CHAPTER I THE EXECUTIVE The President and Vice President

We should add this our duties:

        "(k) to regularly put forward one's own stand,
positives and negatives, towards bills, Acts and constitutional amendments."

But this is not enough and we need more changes in areas to protect the sanctity of democracy.

Friday 16 August 2013

(Problems with Articles) Article 25: Specifically biased against Hindus

Central Government Act
25. Freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion
(1) Subject to public order, morality and health and to the other provisions of this Part, all persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right freely to profess, practise and propagate religion
(2) Nothing in this article shall affect the operation of any existing law or prevent the State from making any law
   (a) regulating or restricting any economic, financial, political or other secular activity which may be associated with religious practice;
  (b) providing for social welfare and reform or the "throwing open of Hindu religious institutions" of a public character to all classes and sections of Hindus 

Explanation I The wearing and carrying of kirpans shall be deemed to be included in the profession of the Sikh religion 
Explanation II  In sub clause (b) of clause reference to Hindus shall be construed as including a reference to persons professing the Sikh, Jaina or Buddhist religion, and the reference to Hindu religious institutions shall be construed accordingly.

My Proposition: Must include throwing open of all religious institutions recognized by the Govt. Which means the recognition of all religions separately, for revoking the sub-religion status

(Preamble) Adding moral and ethical values

I propose to add Moral principles as one of  basic instrument for the interpreting, defining and resolving the constitution:

 We, the people....

EQUALITY of status and of opportuniy and to promote among them all

"MORAL CONDUCT based on ethics of social*, political, administrative**, legislative***;"

FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and the integrity of the nation;

give to ourselves this constitution.

On the wake of:
***Ongoing parliament proceeding moral conduct of ministers in the assembly

*social may be derived from each sect the individual belong to or may be national otherwise.
**Bureaucracy to be morally answerable to the public

More Evidences to be added.

Tuesday 22 June 2010

The Constitution of India

The Constitution of India was enforced by the constituent assembly on 26th of November, 1949.
I am reproducing the Preamble of the constitution of India here for reference:

WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly
resolved to constitute India into a 1[SOVEREIGN
to secure to all its citizens:

JUSTICE, social, economic and political;

LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and

EQUALITY of status and of opportunity;
and to promote among them all

FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual
and the 2[unity and integrity of the Nation];

sixth day of November, 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT,

1 Subs. by the Constitution (Forty-second Amendment) Act, 1976, s. 2, for “SOVEREIGN
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC” (w.e.f. 3-1-1977).
2 Subs. by s. 2, ibid., for “unity of the Nation” (w.e.f. 3-1-1977).

The constitution of India consists of 395 articles (many of which are repealed - listed in the 395th article) divided into 22 parts. In addition it consists of 12 schedules and 2 appendices. There have been 94 amendments to the constitution since its inception. The last one (94th Amendment) was through the Constitution (Ninety-fourth Amendment) Act, 2006.
The complete text of the Constitution can be obtained from the GoI website at .
For easy reading online without downloading the files, i've created an online version which can be read from

The various parts of the constitution are
  • Part I  - Union and its Territory
  • Part II - Citizenship.
  • Part III - Fundamental Rights
  • Part IV - Directive Principles and Fundamental Duties.
  • Part V - The Union.
  • Part VI - The States.
  • Part VII - States in the B part of the First schedule (Repealed).
  • Part VIII - The Union Territories
  • Part IX - Panchayat system and Municipalities.
  • Part X - The scheduled and Tribal Areas
  • Part XI - Relations between the Union and the States.
  • Part XII - Finance, Property, Contracts and Suits
  • Part XIII - Trade and Commerce within the territory of India
  • Part XIV - Services Under the Union, the States and Tribunals
  • Part XV - Elections
  • Part XVI - Special Provisions Relating to certain Classes.
  • Part XVII - Languages
  • Part XVIII - Emergency Provisions
  • Part XIX - Miscellaneous
  • Part XX - Amendment of the Constitution
  • Part XXI - Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions
  • Part XXII - Short title, date of commencement, Authoritative text in Hindi and Repeals
The 12 schedules of the constitution are
  • First Schedule (Articles 1 and 4) — States and Union Territories  – This lists the states and territories on of India, lists any changes to their borders and the laws used to make that change.
  • Second Schedule (Articles 59, 65, 75, 97, 125, 148, 158, 164, 186 and 221) — Emoluments for High-Level Officials  – This lists the salaries of officials holding public office, judges, and Controller and Auditor-General of India.
  • Third Schedule (Articles 75, 99, 124, 148, 164, 188 and 219) — Forms of Oaths  – This lists the oaths of offices for elected officials and judges.
  • Fourth Schedule (Articles 4 and 80)  – This details the allocation of seats in the Rajya Sabha (the upper house of Parliament) per State or Union Territory.
  • Fifth Schedule (Article 244)  – This provides for the administration and control of Scheduled Areas and Scheduled Tribes (areas and tribes needing special protection due to disadvantageous conditions).
  • Sixth Schedule (Articles 244 and 275)— Provisions for the administration of tribal areas in Assam,Meghalaya,Tripura,,Mizoram.
  • Seventh Schedule (Article 246) — The union (central government), state, and concurrent lists of responsibilities.
  • Eighth Schedule (Articles 344 and 351) — The official languages.
  • Ninth Schedule (Article 31-B) - This covers land and tenure reforms; the accession of Sikkim with India. It may be reviewed by the courts[17].
  • Tenth Schedule (Articles 102 and 191) — "Anti-defection" provisions for Members of Parliament and Members of the State Legislatures.
  • Eleventh Schedule (Article 243-G) — Panchayat Raj (rural local government).
  • Twelfth Schedule (Article 243-W) — Municipalities (urban local government).

Friday 18 June 2010

Welcome to the ReConstitution

This blog is about the ReConstitution of India.
It was born from a small observation that the original Constitution of India has grown old and outlived its utility to be relevant in the 21st century.
Hence with a desire to clean up the constitution, we wish to bring about ideas which belong to the new century.
How should the constitution be if we were to write it now, with all the wisdom acquired through half a century of independence.
Hence, walking over the steps of the old constitution, we begin out journey to write a new one, that which inspires, which promotes the ideals of humanity.
In this ambitious endeavour, it is imperative that all of us participate wholeheartedly to make the new India of our dream, the India that we always desired.
Now is your chance, India...