Preamble Of Indian Constitution In English {Step by Step Guide}


Preamble Of Indian Constitution In English {Step by Step Guide}

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Preamble Of Indian Constitution In English | Preamble Of Constitution Of India In English

The term ‘preamble’ refers to the introduction or preface to the Constitution. It contains the summary or essence of the Constitution. The American constitution was the first to define the preamble of a constitution.

The statement

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:

Preamble’s Significance

The preamble contains the essence of the constitution- its values and goals. It is a microcosm of the constitution and has the following significance.

  1. lt states objectives which the constitution and polity aim to Set up, achieve and promote.
  2. The preamble to the written constitution promotes and aids the legal interprerátion especially in case of ambiguous language.
  3. Preamble puts sovereignty in the People of the country.
  4. The preamble also indicates the source from which the constitution’s authority is derived

The constitution of India has an elaborate preamble unlike the constítution of Australia, the US, or Canada, the purpose of the preamble is to clarify whom the constitution has been made for, the sanction, the course, nature of polity, and goals and objective of the constitution.

Position of preamble in India Constitution

India constitution contains 25 parts-and part 1 starts from the union and its territory, so the question arises whether the preamble is part of the constitution or not? This position is clarified by the SC in subsequent judgments.

SC in BERUBARI CASE(1960) ruled-that preamble is not a part of the constitution but in KESHAVANANDA BHARTI CASE(1973) reverse its earlier verdict and ruled that preamble is a part of the constitution, also in the LIC OF INDIA VS CONSUMER EDUCATION RESEARCH CENTRE (1995) SC held the preamble is an integral part of the constitution.

Note: preamble is not enforceable or it is nonjusticiable.
Whether Preamble can be amended or not?

According to SC, in the KESHVANANDA BHARTI CASE (1973)preamble can be amended. Amendment, when it means abridgment, is not allowed, preamble can be enriched but not restricted. Parliament cannot amend the basic feature of the preamble.

SC observed that “the edifice of our constitution is based upon the basic elements in the preamble. If any of these elements are removed the structure will not survive and it will not be the same constitution and will not be able to maintain its identity.”

Explanation of individual terms


The world sovereign implies that India is neither a dependency nor a dominion of any other nation, but an independent state, there is no authority above it, and it is free to conduct its own affairs (both internal and external).

Though in I949, India declared the continuation of her full membership of the commonwealth of nations and accepted the British Crown as the head of any manner.

This extra-constitutional declaration does not affect Sovereignty in any manner. Further, India’s membership of the United Nations Organization (UNO) also in no way constitutes a limitation on her sovereignty. Being a sovereign state, India can either acquire a foreign territory or cede a part of its territory in favor of a foreign state.


Socialist means the factors of production are owned by the people of the country. Even before the term was added by the 42nd amendment in 1976, the constitution had a socialist content in the form of certain directive principles of state policy.

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In other words, what was hitherto implicit in the constitution has now been made explicit. Moreover, the congress party itself adopted a resolution to establish a ‘socialiştic pattern of society’ in this Avadi session as early as in 1955 and took measures accordingly.

Notably, the Indian brand of socialism is a democratic sociálism and not communistic socialism (also known as state socialism) which involves the nationalization of all means of production and distribution and the abolition of private property.

Democratic socialism, on the other hand, holds faith in a mixed economy where both public and private sectors co-exist side by side.

As the supreme court says, Democratic socialism aims to end poverty, ignorance, disease, and inequality of opportunity, Indian Socialism is a blend of Marxism and Gandhianism, leaning heavily towards Gandhian socialism the new economic policy (1991) if liberalization, privatization, privatization, and globalization has, however, diluted the socialist credentials of the Indian State.


It means

  • The state has no official religion
  • State and religion are separated
  • The state has an equidistant policy towards all religions
  • All religions have the right to pursue the religion of their choice.

The term secular to0 was added by the 42nd constitutional amendment act of 1976. However, as the supreme court said in 1974, although the words secular state were not expressively mentioned in the constitution, there can be no doubt that constitution-makers wanted to establish such a state, and accordingly articles 25 to 28 (guaranteeing thé fundamental right to freedom of religion) have been included in the conśtitution.

The Indian constitution embodies the positive concept of secularism ie. all religions in our country (irrespective of their
strength) have the same status and support from the state.

In the SR Bommai’s case verdict Supreme court has ruled that secularism forms the basic structure of the Indian constitution, even if had not been scientifically mentioned in the constitution.

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Democracy means plurality. It is the plurality of religion, region, ideas, culture, case, gender, etc. A democratic polity as stipulated in the preamble is based on the doctrine of popular sovereignty, that is, possession of supreme power by the people. Democracy is of two types-direct and indirect.

In a direct democracy, the people exercise their supreme power directly as is the case in Switzerland. There are four devices of DIRECT DEMOCRACY, namely.

Referendum -A referendum is a vote on a matter of public interest or concern. For example Recent referendum in Columbia.

Plebiscite-it is also a direct vote on matters of public interest. The only difference is that plebisCite is mostly for political purposes or claiming sovereignty. For example, as in the case of Jammu and Kashmir.

Initiative– Registered voters can petition to gather support for a new law or changes to an exISting law.For example Hongkong’s Umbrella revolution

Recall– a registered voter can petition to remove elected representatives. For example, Recall is being used in Some municipalities of Madhya Pradesh and Gujrat.

ln indirect democracy, on the other hand, the representatives elected by the people exercise the supreme power and thus carry on the government and make the laws.

This type of democracy, also known as representative democracy, is of two kinds-parliamentary and presidential.

The Indian constitution provides for representative parliamentary democracy under which the executive is responsible to the legislature for all its policies and actions.

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Universal adult franchise, periodic elections, rule of law. Independence of judiciary and absence of discrimination on certain grounds are the Manifestations or the democratic character of the Indian polity.

The term democratic is used in the preamble in the broader sense embracing not only political democracy but also social and economic democracy.

This dimension was stressed by Dr. Ambedkar in his concluding speech in the constituent assembly on November 25, 1949, in the following way: Political democracy cannot last unless there least at the base of the social democracy.

A democratic polity can be classified into two categories Monarchy and republic. In a monarchy, the head of the state (usually king or queen) enjoys a hereditary position, that is, he comes into office through succession, e.g. Britain.

In a republic, on the other hand, the head of the state is always elécted directly or indirectly for a fixed period, e.g.USA therefore, the term republic in our preamble indicates that India has an elected head called the president.

He is elected indirectly for a fixed period of five years.

A republic also means two more things: one, vesting of political sovereignty in the people and not in an individual like a King; second. The absence of any privileged class and hence all public offices being opened to every citizen without any discrimination.


The term justice in the preamble embraces three distinct forms- Social, economic, and political, secured through various provisions of fundamental rights and directive principles.

Social justice denotes the equal treatment of all citizens without any social distinction based on caste, color, race, religion, sex, and so on.

It means the absence of privileges being extended to any particular section of the society, and improvement in the conditions of backward classes (SCs, STs, and OBCs) and women. Economic justice denotes the non-discrimination between people on the basis of economic factors.

It involves the elimination of glaring inequalities in wealth income and property, a combination of social justice and economic justice denotes what is known as distributive justice.

Political justice implies that all citizens should have equal political rights, equal access to all political offices, and an equal voice in the government.

The idea of justice- social, economic, and political has been taken from the Russian revolution of 1917.

Social Justice: Entitlement programmed like the right to work, right to food.
Economic Justice: Progressive taxation, land reforms, etc.
Political Justice: Universal adult franchise, equal access to public offices.

Liberty the term ‘liberty’ means the absence of restraints on the activities of individuals and at the same time, providing opportunities for the development of individual personalities.

The preamble secures to all citizens of India liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith, and worship, through their fundamental rights, enforceable in a court of law, in case of violation.

Liberty as elaborated in the preamble is very essential for the successful functioning of the Indian democratic system.

However, liberty does not mean a license to do what one likes and has to be enjoyed within the limitations mentioned in the constitution itself, in brief, the liberty conceived by the preamble or fundamental rights is not absolutely qualified.

The ideals of liberty, equality, and fraternity in our preamble have been taken from the French revolution (1 789-1 799).

Example: While the supreme court recently in the decision of criminal prosecution of defamation recognized that although liberty of freedom to speak is necessary for democracy but the mutual respect of fraternity that assures dignity is also a fulcrum of democracy which should be respected.

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The term equality means the absence of spec1al privileges to any section of the society, and the provision of adequate opportunities for all individuals without any discrimination, the preamble secures tò all citizens of India equality of status and opportunity. This provision embraces three dimensions of equality- civics, political and economic.

The following provisions of the chapter on fundamental rights ensure civic equality:
(a) Equality before the law (Article 14)

(b) Equality before the law (Article Prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, or place/of birth (Article 15)

(c)  Equality of opportunity in matters of public employment (Article 16).
(d)  Abolition of untouchability (Article 17).
(e)  abolition of titles (Article 18).

There are two provisions in the constitution that seek to achieve political equality. One, no person is to be declared ineligiblę for inclusion in electoral rolls on grounds of religion, ráce, caste-or sex (article 325).

Two directive principles of state policy (Article 39) secure to men and women equal right to an adequate means of livelihood and equal pay for equal work.

While through the constitutional provision like articles 14,15,16 we have been able to create the equality of opportunity but the quality of status is far from being realized.

Still, the social hierarchy in the society exists and people are being discriminated against on the basis of the same parameters like caste, sex, religion as mentioned in the constitution for which the government is bound to be committed.

For example, the involvement of caste in polity and policy of reservation has widened the rift between different castes instead of abolishing it.


Fraternity means a sense of brotherhood. The constitution promotes this feeling of fraternity by the system of single citizenship.

Also, the fundamental duties (Article 51-A) say that it shall be the duty of every citizen of India transcending religion. Linguistic, regional, or sectional diversities.

According to KM Munshi, a member of the drafting committee of the constituent assembly, the phrase dignity of the individual signifies that the constitution not only ensures material betterment but maintains a democratic set-up. But that also recognizes that the personality of every individual is sacred.

This is highlighted through Some of the provisions of the fundamental rights and directive principles of state policy, which ensure the dignity of individuals.

Further, the fundamental duties (Article 51 – A) also protect the dignity of women by stating that it shall be the duty of every citizen of India to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women.

And also makes it the duty of every citizen of India to uphold and protect the Sovereignty, unity, and territorial dimension of national integration.

Article 1 of the constitution describes India as a union of states to make it clear that the states have no right to secede from the union, implying the indestructible nature of the Indian union.

It aims at overcoming hindrances to national integration like communalism. regionalism, casteism, linguism, secessionism and so on.

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