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1) It would have been difficult for the Constituent Assembly to complete its historic task of drafting the Constitution for Independent India in just three years but for the experience gained with the Government of India Act, 1935. Discuss.(250 words)

Topic – Part of static series under the heading – “Modern Indian History”

1) It would have been difficult for the Constituent Assembly to complete its historic task of drafting the Constitution for Independent India in just three years but for the experience gained with the Government of India Act, 1935. Discuss.(250 words)

 

Key demand of the question

The question basically expects us to debate how great an impact GoIA, 1935 had on the constitution, the similarities as well as the differences. We have to examine whether it  was merely the similarities with 1935 Act which fastened the constitution drafting process , or whether there were other sources of inspiration as well. Finally we need to provide a fair and balanced opinion regarding this.

Directive word

Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain about the constituent assembly and GoIA, 1935.

Body

  • Discuss the features of the constitution which were borrowed from 1935 Act such as residuary power, Separation of powers by three different lists, Bicameralism, Powers of President. Explain what did the constituent assembly learn from the experiences of GoIA Act, 1935
  • Thereafter, explain that provision related to federalism in GoIA, 1935 never got tested because they were not implemented
  • Discuss the other provisions which got added to Constitution such as fundamental concepts like Equality, Freedom, Adult franchise.
  • Also explain that the seeds of principles of constitution were also laid down throughout the course of freedom struggle. Give other sources from where the constitution was inspired.

Conclusion – Your conclusion can be on these lines – While we agree that the GOI Act, 1935 reduced the time frames of constitution creation, we should not forget that it was created to manage (or control) the affairs of a colony upon vested commercial interests of The Great Britain. At the same time we need to accept that there were many Indian intellectuals laid a strong foundation well before GOI Act, 1935 for this cause.