AMENDMENTS OF THE INDIAN CONSTITUTION

constitution, India

Introduction

The process of making changes by adding or altering the fundamental laws of a nation is called Amending the Indian constitution. In this article, let’s learn about amendments, methods of amendments, articles, and other facts.

  • The official changes made to a law, legal documents, constitution, or contracts are called Amendment.
  • The process of making changes by adding or altering the fundamental laws of a nation is called Amending the Indian constitution.
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  • Providing a law with the protection of the federal government is the prime purpose of amendments.
  • With amendments, it is possible for adding, removing or updating the parts of these legal agreements.
  • They are mainly used when a change in a document is better than making a new one.

Amendment procedures of the Indian constitution

  • Amendment procedures of the Indian constitution are laid down in part XX of Article 368.
  • It mentions the parliament’s power in amending the constitution and its procedures.
  • Following are the procedures for amending the constitution:
  • The first step in initiating an amendment of the constitution is by introducing a bill regarding the purpose in either House of parliaments.
  • The introduction of this bill does not require the prior permission of the president.
  • A minister or a private member can introduce this bill.
  • A special majority in each is required for the passing of the proposed bill.
  • The majority of the membership in a total of the house and a majority which is not less than two-thirds of the members in the house present and voting is known as the special majority.
  • The bill should be passed by each house separately.
  • If a disagreement occurs, there will not be any provision for a joint sitting regarding the passage and deliberation of the bill.
  • The bill is presented to the president if it has been passed by the special majority.
  • If the bill passed seeks to make any changes to the provisions mentioned in article 368, it should also be ratified by the legislatures which are not less than half of the states.
  • After the assent is given by the president, the bill becomes a Constitutional Amendment Act.

Methods of Amendments

  • According to provision XX of article 368, there are two methods for amending different parts of the constitution.
  • The following are the methods of amendment:
  • According to this method, most of the provisions of the constitution will be amended by a special majority of the parliament.
  • Here, an amendment bill can be passed by the majority of the total membership of each House of the parliament or a majority not less than two-thirds of members present and voting.
  • This method is considered to be both flexible and rigid.
  • Flexible in the sense as it requires the parliament alone to pass the amendment.
  • Rigid in the sense as it mentions the special majority for amending the constitution.
  • Initially, the amendment bill has to be passed by 2/3 majority of the total membership of the parliament present and voting.
  • Next, this amendment has to be ratified by half of the state legislatures.
  • This will now be presented to the president for signature and hence, it becomes part of the constitution.
  • The provisions of the constitution that can be amended by this method are as follows:
  • Election of the president.
  • Scope of executive power of union, states.
  • Provisions related to High courts in Union territories, Supreme court of India, and High Court of states.
  • The executive or legislative relations between the Union and the states.
  • The lists mentioned in the seventh schedule.
  • Representation of states in parliament.
  • The provisions mentioned in article 368.
  • This method is considered to be an easy method of amendment.
  • Here, Parliament is given the power to do amended by a simple majority of two houses of parliament which is outside the scope of article 368.
  • The provisions of the constitution that can be amended by this method are:
  • Establishment or admission of new states, alteration of boundaries, areas, or names of existing states.
  • Provisions regarding citizenship.
  • The second, the fifth, and the sixth schedules of the constitution.
  • The election in the country.
  • Legislatures for Union territories.
  • Creation and abolition of the upper house in states.
  • Appointment of judges, the jurisdiction of the supreme court.
  • Rules of procedure in the parliament.
  • Usage of English as a language in parliament.
  • Privileges, allowances, and salaries of members of parliament.
  • A quorum of both Houses of parliament.
  • Delimitation of constituencies.

List of Amendments

  • In Indian Constitution, there are three types of amendments to which the second and third types are governed by article 368.

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