Topic outline

    • Constitutional Design 

      Q44. Which countries constitutional features inspired Indian Constitution makers? 

      Ans. Many of our leaders were inspired by the ideals of French Revolution, the practice of parliamentary democracy in Britain and the Bill of Rights in the US.


      Q45. What does liberty mean in the preamble of our Constitution? 

      Ans. It means there are no unreasonable restrictions on the citizens in what they think, how they wish to express their thoughts and the way they wish to follow up their thoughts in action.


      Q46. What does equality mean in the preamble of our Constitution?

      Ans. It means all are equal before the law. The traditional social inequalities have to be ended. The government should ensure equal opportunity for all.


      Q47. Why do we need to make amendments to our constitution? 
      Why are amendments necessary in the constitution?

      Ans. Amendments are necessary in the constitution because it needs to be updated in accordance with people’s aspirations and changes in society.


      Q48. What does socialist in a democratic constitution mean? 

      Ans. It means wealth is generated socially and should be shared equally by society. Government should regulate the ownership of land and industry to reduce socio-economic inequalities.


      Q49. What does democratic mean? 

      Ans. Democratic means a form of government where people enjoy equal political rights, elect their rulers and hold them accountable. The government is run according to some basic rules.


      Q50. Why many countries of the world have had to rewrite their Constitution afresh? 

      Ans. Many countries of the world have had to rewrite their Constitution afresh because the basic rules were not accepted to all major social groups or political parties.


      Q51. What is Constitution? 

      Ans. Constitution is the supreme law that determines the relationship among people living in a territory (called citizens) and also the relationship between the people and government.


      Q52. Who was Nelson Mandela?

      Ans. Nelson Mandela was the leader of African National Congress (ANC). He was imprisoned for 28 years in South Africa’s most dreaded prison, Robben Island.


      Q53. What was the appeal made by the black leaders to the fellow blacks after being democratic?

      Ans. After the emergence of the new democratic South Africa, black leaders appealed to fellow blacks to forgive the whites for the atrocities they had committed while in power.


      Q54. What was the major challenge prevailing in South African society after being democratic? 

      Ans. The oppressor and the oppressed in this new democracy were planning to live together as equals. It was not going to be easy for them to trust each other.


      Q55. How was the constituent assembly formed?

      Ans. The drafting of the document called the constitution was done by an assembly of elected representatives called the Constituent Assembly. Elections to the Constituent Assembly were held in July 1946.


      Q56. Who formed the constitution of new democratic South Africa?

      Ans. The party that ruled through oppression and brutal killings and the party that led the freedom struggle sat together to draw up a common constitution.


      Q57. Why is the Constitution considered as the supreme law?
      Why is the Constitution called as the supreme law of the land?

      Ans. Constitution is called as the supreme law of the land because as the supreme law of the country, the constitution determines the rights of citizens, the powers of the government and how the government should function.


      Q58. What is the unusual achievement of our constitution? 

      Ans. Over the last half a century, several groups have questioned some provisions of the Constitution. But no large social group or political party has ever questioned the legitimacy of the Constitution itself. This is an unusual achievement for any constitution.


      Q59. How did the blacks of South Africa fight against the practice of apartheid system?
      Who all fought against the apartheid system?

      Ans. Since 1950, the blacks, coloured and Indians fought against the apartheid system. They launched protest marches and strikes. The African National Congress (ANC) was the umbrella organisation that led the struggle against the policies of segregation.