Explained: What is the Preamble of the Indian Constitution

Vicky Nanjappa

New Delhi, Jan 24: The Maharashtra Government in an order said that reciting the preamble of the Indian Constitution would be mandatory in schools. It also said that the collective reading of the Preamble would have to be carried out rural local bodies before flag hoisting ceremonies starting from January 26 onwards.

What is the Preamble of the Indian Constitution.

The Preamble is a brief introductory statement of the Constitution that sets out the guiding purpose, principles and philosophy of the Indian Constitution.

The 42nd amendment of the Constitution effected in 1976 amended the preamble to determine India as a Sovereign, Socialist, Secular and Democratic Republic.

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The Preamble:

  • WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens:
  • JUSTICE, social, economic and political;
  • LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;
  • EQUALITY of status and of opportunity;
  • and to promote among them all
  • FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation;

Key words in the Preamble:

  • Sovereign: India is an independent authority and is not the dominion of any external power
  • Socialist: Achievement of the socialist ends through democratic means
  • Secular: All religions in India get equal respect, protection, support from the state
  • Democratic: The authority of the will of the people expressed in an election
  • Republic: Head of the state elected directly or indirectly- Prime Minister, President

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