Introduction -


What is "Basic Structure"?  Nagraj Vs Union of India in this case 5 Judges of Supreme Court explained the basic feature theory in detail.  'Basic Structure' are systematic principles underlying and connecting provisions of the Constitution. These principles are part of constitutional law even if not expressly stated.  The Doctrine "basic structure" has essentially developed from the German Constitution. it is not based on literal words. Theory Basic Structure is based on the theory of Constitution identity. The main object behind the Theory is continuity and within the continuity of identity.


Basic Features of The Indian Constitution



1) Supremacy of the Constitution - Constitution of India is the supreme law of the land and therefore the provisions of the Constitution shall prevail over all other laws. The disputes are settled in accordance with the provision of Constitution.

2) Parliamentary (Democratic, Republic) form of Government - The Indian Constitution establishes a Parliamentary form of Government both at the centre and state levels. In Democracy there is the right to choose a political representative.  The head of the State in India is an Elected head and not hereditary.

3) Secular Character of the Government - In India Secularism does not mean irreligion or against religion but It means respect for all faiths and religions. Indian being a secular state there is no state preferred religion as such and all religions are equal. Every religious group enjoys the same Constitutional Protection without any favor or discrimination.   

4) Federal Character of the Constitution - The federal structure is not strictly federal in India, Like USA or Australia. It has Centralising Tendency. It can also be called as quasi-federal or cooperative federalism.

See also Whether the Indian Constitution is unitary or federal?

5) Sovereignty of India - India is Independent State, free to administer its own affairs nationally and internationally. It implies that the Constitution is Fundamental Law of the Land

6) Free and Fair Elections - In India the Election Commission is an independent autonomous body, and the Constitution ensures, as in the case of the Supreme Court and High Courts, that it may be able to function freely without any Executive interference.

7) Rule of Law - Rule of law means equality before law and equal protection of law. It implies that no man is above the law and no man is below the law. Like to be treated alike.

8) Right to Equality -The Indian Constitution in Article 14 guarantees equality before law. Law is Supreme and the government cannot make any law which is arbitrary, contrary, fanciful or evasive. The constitution is the result of ordinary law

9) The Harmony and balance between fundamental rights and directive principles of State Policy.

10) Limited Amending Power of the Parliament - The Constitution of India is Partly Rigid and Partly Flexible. Some provisions of the Constitution can be amended by the simple majority procedure while some of the provisions are amended by special, more difficult and technical procedure which requires the special majority of both the houses of the Parliament.

11) Separation of powers between Legislature, Executive and Judiciary and Independent Judiciary  - The Constitution of India sets up a federal form of Government, providing for the distribution of the powers. The Constitution of India provides for the setting up of Independent Judiciary.


See also...

The Preamble of Indian Constitution and related case law

What is the purpose of having a Preamble to the constitution? Is it a part of the Constitution?

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