THE FIRST AMENDMENT OF THE INDIAN CONSTITUTION.

Introduction

Indian Constitution being the lengthiest written one across the globe has its own valuable speciality uplifting the philosophy of the national struggle, gaols and objectives of the constitutional designers, the ideas that impressed our leaders and the great personalities who made the world stop their look at India. Most importantly the document sets out the framework for the distinction and demarcation of political codes, procedures, structure, powers, functions, responsibilities, nature of government, its institutions and its organs, fundamental rights, guidelines and duties of the public. The father of the constitution Dr. BR. Ambedkar and also being the chairman of the drafting committee with the assembly enshrined the valuable principles in the constitution which are secular, republic, socialist, federal, equality, integral and united. The amendment in Indian Constitution is Rigid. The Amendment procedure here are, Amendment by simple majority, Amendment by special majority and ratification by at least one half of the State Legislatures, Amendment by the special majority. We have more than 100 Amendments till now, in this article we will see the first amendment of our constitution.

Amended Articles:

  1. The first Amendment of the constitution is with effect from the date 18-6-1951.
  2. It added the (4) to article 15, which is as followed:

15(4)- Nothing in this article or in clause (2) of article 29 shall prevent the state from making any special provision for the advancement of any socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the scheduled castes and the scheduled tribes.

So basically, in this amendment we see, the constitution empowers the state to make special provisions to advance the socially and economically backward classes. As the constitution uplifted the principle of equality and because of the crucial debates against positive discrimination, this amendment clearly enforced the state to bring special provisions in advancing the socially and economically backward classes. 

  • It also added to article 19, (2) Nothing in sub-clause (a) of clause (1) shall affect the operation of law, or prevent the state from making any law, in so far as such law imposes reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub-clause the state.
  • Article 31-A was added, which said Savings of laws providing for acquisition of estates. And also, Article 31-B was added which said validation of certain acts and regulations.
  • Three more reasons for restricting freedom of speech and expression Article 19, have been added: public order, friendly relations with foreign states, and incitement to an offence. It also made the restrictions ‘reasonable’ and, therefore, in nature, justiciable.
  • The First Amendment Act of 1951, substituted Article 85 sessions of Parliament, prorogation and dissolution.
  • The First Amendment Act of 1951, also substituted Article 87- special address by the President.

At the commencement of [the first session after each general election to the House of the people and at the commencement of first session of each year] the President shall address both Houses of Parliament assembled together and inform Parliament of the causes of its summons.

  • The First Amendment Act of 1951, also substituted Article 174, which says, Sessions of the state legislature prorogation and dissolution- (1) The Governor Shall from time to time, Summon the House or each House of the Legislature of the state to meet at such time and place as he thinks fit but six months shall not intervene between its last sitting in one session and the date appointed for its first sitting in the next session.   (2) The governor may from time to time- (a) prorogue house or either house. (b) dissolve the Legislative Assembly.
  • The First Amendment Act of 1951, also substituted Article 176- special address by the Governor- (1) At the commencement of the first session after each general election to the Legislative Assembly and at the commencement of the first session of each year, the governor shall Address the Legislative Assembly or, in the case of a state having a legislative Council, both houses assembled together. And inform the legislature of the causes of its summons.
  • The First Amendment Act of 1951, also substituted Article 341- The president may with respect to any state or union territory by public notification specify the castes, races or tribes or parts of or groups within castes, races or tribes which shall for the purposes of this constitution de deemed to be scheduled castes relation to that state.
  • In the Article 372, “two years” was substituted by “three years” in (3).
  • Any such judge shall, notwithstanding that he is not a citizen of India, be eligible for appointment as Chief Justice of such High Court, or as Chief Justice or other judge of any other High Court. This feature was added in the Article 376- Provisions as to judges of High Court through First Amendment of 1951.
  • Added Ninth Schedule to protect from judicial review the land reforms and other legislation included in it.

Conclusion- The Indian Constitution being rigid in nature has gone many changes according to the changing times that makes it dynamic but still it has not given up on the principal foundation it is laid on, the first amendment of our constitution tried to amend and clarify some of the major factors in it.  

References-

https://blog.ipleaders.in/the-major-constitutional-amendment-in-indian-history/#:~:text=The%20Constitution%20(First%20Amendment)%20Act,other%20legislation%20included%20in%20it.

https://legislative.gov.in/constitution-first-amendment-act-1951

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