The Constituent Assembly of India met in the Constitution Hall, New Delhi, at Ten of the Clock, Mr. President (The Honourable Dr. Rajendra Prasad) in the Chair.

GOVERNMENT OF INDIA ACT (AMENDMENT) BILL

11.165.1

President

: The first thing today is to take up the Bill of which notice has been given by Dr. Ambedkar.

11.165.2

B.R. Ambedkar

     Sir, I move for leave to introduce a Bill further to amend the government of India Act, 1935.

11.165.3

President

     The question is:

      "That leave be given to introduce a Bill further to amend the Government of India Act, 1935."

The motion was adopted.

11.165.4

B.R. Ambedkar

    Sir, I introduce the Bill.

11.165.5

President

   The Bill is introduced.

11.165.6

B.R. Ambedkar

    Sir, I move:

     "That the Bill further to amend the Government of India Act, 1935, be taken into consideration by the Assembly at once." #government of india act, amendment##

11.165.7

President

    Motion moved:

     "That the Bill further to amend the Government of India Act, 1935, be taken into consideration by the Assembly at once."

11.165.8

Lokanath Misra

      Sir, I welcome this amending Bill but I wish to make a few observations.

11.165.9

Lokanath Misra

     The statement of objects and reasons says that on demand from certain Provinces to alter their names, this Bill has come before the House. I beg to submit that instead of changing the names of certain Provinces, the Government or the Governor General should take steps to change the names of all the, Provinces as far as possible to fit in with our name Bharatvarsha. For instance, I have got a call from my own Province that the name may be changed from Orissa to Utkal. There are various cogent grounds for changing that name. Our University is called the Utkal University. You know, Sir, the Congress calls it the Utkal Province. Then again, our revered Rabindranath Tagore in his Jana Gana Mana also describes our Province as Utkal. Utkal is an ennobling word. It means high art and high apprehension. I therefore, submit, if my words could reach the Governor General, steps should be taken to change the name of my Province Orissa to Utkal.

11.165.10

R. K. Sidhva

      Mr. President, unfortunately, this Bill has been brought in this session for want of time. This subject really speaking relates to this Constituent Assembly and it should have been brought earlier. But, it is neither your fault, Sir nor the fault of the Drafting Committee nor the fault of the House, because we are working against time.

11.165.11

R. K. Sidhva

     Therefore, the second best method is sought to be adopted by the Drafting Committee. Therefore, certainly I do not find fault with them.

11.165.12

R. K. Sidhva

     However, I feel, Sir, that the matter of changing names of the Provinces is such an important matter that I do not desire that only the provincial Governments or even the Congress Committees should decide amongst themselves and send it to the Governor General, and the Governor General should ditto it. We have a little sad experience here. We desired in the last session when we dispersed that this subject being of very great importance, if the Provincial Congress Committees and Provincial Governments come to a decision, this House will take a favourable consideration. But what has happened? The U. P. Government and U. P. Assembly decided that the name should be changed into Aryavarta. That was seriously objected to by this House on the ground that Aryavarta relates to the whole of India. The U. P. friends are always very anxious to monopolise to themselves the name of India and therefore it was by an overwhelming majority of this House that the motion of my Friend Mr. Shibban lal Saksena was rejected and that is on record in this House. In the year 1938 when the Indian National Congress held its session in Cawnpore in the All-India Congress Committee my friends from U. P. brought a resolution that the name of the U. P. Congress Committee should be changed into Hindustan Congress Committee. The A. I. C. C. rejected it My friends being so enthusiastic brought it in the Open Congress and I had to oppose it and the Congress threw it out. It was in '1938 under the Presidentship of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and I was the person who strongly opposed it in the open Congress and I was glad that the Open Congress seeing the force of the argument stated that U. P. cannot usurp to themselves the name of Hindustan and it was rejected. My fear is therefore again after Aryavarta has been rejected they may suggest Hindustan. As the previous speaker stated, Orissa should be called Utkal just as C. P. has been called Madhya Pradesh. Why not U. P. be called Samyukt Pradesh? If that is not acceptable there are other very fine names like Avadh, Ayodhya, Ganga, etc. Why should they usurp the name of the whole of India and tell us they are the people who are the only custodians of India? I strongly resent their monopolising the name of India. Therefore I feel that it is very risky to give the power to the Governor-General. I have an amendment to that effect and when the time comes. I shall move that. Therefore while I give my qualified support to this, I do desire that this power should not be entrusted to the Governor-General as it is the right of this House and if this House has no time to decide this, then Parliament should ultimately decide not the Governor-General.

11.165.13

Mohan Lal Gautam

    Mr. President, I am not one of those who enter into these controversies which are in my opinion very small if not petty. People always choose their names and if their names are changed, they will create a row in this House. If the name of our Province U. P. was changed two years back when we achieved independence, I assure you that this House would not have come in the way and it would have been swallowed by all of us.

11.165.14

     Question.

11.165.15

Mohan Lal Gautam

    You may question me. You may call it Utkal or Kerala or Malabar or Kannada-nobody bothers about it but when this question came up here, people are raising these objections. My friend Mr. Sidhva said that U. P. is always in the habit of monopolising the name of the whole of India. I assure you that U. P. has a gift and it is perhaps the only province in the country which can claim that it has no provincialism.

11.165.16

    Question.

11.165.17

Mohan Lal Gautam

    You may question but I give you a challenge hen and now that in all the Provinces you are so provincial.

11.165.18

   No.

11.165.19

Mohan Lal Gautam

    That you will not tolerate other people. I give a challenge to all the other provinces to give me examples where you have elected people who do not belong to your province to the Constituent Assembly. I give you a challenge where you can quote me since 1919 how many Ministers you have taken into your Ministries who did not belong to your province.

11.165.20

President

   I would request the honourable Member not to go into matters which are not strictly germane to the motion under discussion. It is a simple proposition which is before the House and he should confine his remarks to that.

11.165.21

Mohan Lal Gautam

    I bow to your ruling but I assure you that U. P. does not want any name that you object to. This function of Brahmins--of giving names ought to have some background. You say why not give it the name of Avadh. Avadh is one of the very important parts of U. P. but it is only a part. Avadh has a tradition of Nawabs and feudal lords which we do not want.

11.165.22

President

     Let us not discuss the names because the names are before the House.

11.165.23

Deshbandbu Gupta

    U. P. is also part of Aryavarta and not the whole.

11.165.24

Mohan Lal Gautam

     I am conscious of it that U. P. is only a part of Aryavarta.

11.165.25

President

    I think you had better confine yourself to the provisions of the Bill.

11.165.26

Mohan Lal Gautam

    The justification of this Bill is that it is not very easy for this House without knowing the history of the Province, without understanding them, it is not possible for one or two Members to stand up and propose the names. Another difficulty arises that if You had given any name to this Province yourself we might have accepted it or we might have tolerated it, but you referred the matter to the provincial Government and the Provincial Government consulted the Provincial Congress Committee and in consultation they suggested some name which is not acceptable to you. (interruption) I am not prepared to answer any question of Mr. Sidhva because, the Chair has ruled that the names are not to be discussed so Mr. Sidhva need not take the trouble of suggesting some names here and now without understanding the implication of those names. Therefore the difficulty is that the name that was suggested is not acceptable to this House and no new name can be suggested on the spur of the moment. Therefore I am grateful to -the Drafting Committee and the President of the Drafting Committee. Dr. Ambedkar-to find a via media in suggesting this amendment to the, Government of India Act, 1935. This will solve the difficulty. The solution is that the Provinces must be consulted and it must be acceptable to all-India authority and the all-India authority is the President and the President means the President and the Cabinet. Cabinet means if the Cabinet is responsible to the Party in power, they can consult you therefore the power really is transferred from this house to the Congress Party in the Parliament. If you do not want it, you may suggest some via media but to reject it would be something absolutely different. Therefore I am thankful to the Drafting Committee and I whole-heartedly support this amendment, because it is a via media and I would request Members of the House not to insist on their opposition.

11.165.27

President

    Do you want to speak, Mr. Pataskar?

11.165.28

H. V. Pataskar

      No, I do not want to oppose the motion, but would like to offer some remarks.

11.165.29

President

     You can do so when we take up the clauses. Well, I then put this motion.

11.165.30

President

     The question is:

     "That the Bill further to amendment Lao Government of India Act, 1935, be taken into consideration by the Assembly at once."

The motion was adopted.

11.165.31

President

    Then we take up the clauses of the Bill.   

11.165.32

President

  Clause 1; there is one amendment by Mr. Naziruddin Ahmad.

11.165.33

Naziruddin Ahmad

   Mr. President, Sir, I beg to move:

     "That in sub-clause (1) of clause 1, for the words 'Fourth Amendment' the words Third Amendment' be substituted."

11.165.34

President

    Or, alternatively?

11.165.35

Naziruddin Ahmad

    No, Sir, I do not wish to move the alternative amendment.

11.165.36

Naziruddin Ahmad

     Sir, I wish to point out what seems to be a glaring anomaly. We have already passed four Acts in this Constituent Assembly relating to the amendment of the Government of India Act. Though we have passed four Acts, yet the numbering is absolutely erratic. We have Act No. I Then we have Act No. II. Then we have Act No. III and then, by a big jump we have Act No. V, but it seems there is no Act No. IV. Sir, the usual or rather the accepted way of numbering Acts is serial. After Act III, we must have Act IV, and not Act No. V. There is thus, a gap in Act No. IV. I do not know whether this is the fact, but this is what I have understood as having happened here. So far as the amendments are concerned, of the four amendments, the first is called the Government of India Amendment Act, 1949. The second is called the Government of India Amendment Act Second, 1949, and the third Act is not numbered at all. So I submit that this Act should be called the Third Amendment. So, so far as the numbering of the Act is concerned, I do not know what will be the number of the present Act if it is passed.

11.165.37

President

     I understand the Third Amendment Act related to evacuee property.

11.165.38

Naziruddin Ahmad

   That may be, but that is another matter.

11.165.39

President

     And so this is the Fourth.

11.165.40

Naziruddin Ahmad

     But the point is absolutely different. My point is that in numbering the Acts, they must be consecutive. The numbering of the Acts should be consecutive, irrespective of the subject dealt with. Each Act passed by the Constituent Assembly must be numbered serially, as one, two, three, four and so on. The fourth Act has really been numbered Act No. V. This is the place to consider whether Act V should be considered as Act IV and whether this present Bill should be given retrospective effect, and be numbered IV, though it is passed after the fifth, or whether it will remain as it is, with a gap left in between. Should that gap be allowed to remain or should it be corrected at this stage? These are the considerations which seem to me to be very important. There is some sort of lapse somewhere, and I beg to point this out so that it may be corrected by this House.

11.165.41

B.R. Ambedkar

   Sir, I am sure that there is some confusion in the mind of my friend Mr. Naziruddin Ahmad, as I find by reference to the various Acts that are passed by the Constituent Assembly the proposal in the Bill that it should be called the Fourth Amendment Act is the proper wording. The first Act that was passed by the Constituent Assembly is called the Government of India (Amendment) Act, 1949. The second one is called the Government of India (Second Amendment) Act, 1949, which deals with the removal of prisoners from one unit to another unit. The third Amendment Act, 1949, deals with evacuee property, and the Bengal election.

11.165.42

Naziruddin Ahmad

    It is not called an Amendment Act at all, it has got a different name.

11.165.43

B.R. Ambedkar

    If you look at Clause 1, there you will see, "This Act may be called the Government of India (Second Amendment) Act, 1949." The next one is called the Third Amendment Act, 1949, which deals with the custody management and disposal of evacuee property and the election in West Bengal.

11.165.44

B.R. Ambedkar

     The confusion, I think, has arisen from the fact that we have passed two other Acts in the Constituent Assembly, one relating to the Abolition of Privy Council Jurisdiction and another amending the Central Government and Legislature Act, 1946. Those Acts are not amendments of the Government of India Act, at all. Although those Acts may have indirect effect on the Government of India. Act, they are not amendments to the Government of India Act. We are, therefore, entitled to class this as the Fourth Amendment, because, so far as direct amendment of the Government of India Act, 1935 is concerned, this Assembly has passed only three Acts and no other.

11.165.45

Naziruddin Ahmad

    But there, is. no Third Amendment Act, at all.

11.165.46

B.R. Ambedkar

     Of course there is. The third Act deals with the custody, management and disposal of evacuee property. I have got the Act here before me.

11.165.47

President

    There seems to be a little confusion about this matter. Fourth is not the number of the Act. What is described here is the fourth amendment of the Act. That is not the number of the Act itself. The number of the Act is separate.

11.165.48

B.R. Ambedkar

    It is a description of the present Act. It is a short title.

11.165.49

President

    It is only a description. The number will be Act No. 6 of 1949.

11.165.50

B.R. Ambedkar

    That is so. This is a short title.

11.165.51

President

  The Constituent Assembly has passed five Acts up to now, in 1949 and this will be the sixth. But so far as amendments are concerned it is the fourth amendment to the Government of India Act, and therefore it is called the Fourth amendment.

11.165.52

Hirday Nath Kunzru

     If out of the five Acts that we have already passed......

11.165.53

President

    This is the sixth.

11.165.54

B.R. Ambedkar

     We have passed in this Assembly five Acts. Out of them two have nothing to do with any amendment of the Government of India Act, 1935.

11.165.55

Hirday Nath Kunzru

    Why were they placed before the Constituent Assembly if they were not of a constitutional character?

11.165.56

B.R. Ambedkar

     The short title is quite different from the purport of the Act.

11.165.57

Hirday Nath Kunzru

     The question is whether the right of a litigant to appeal to the Privy Council could have been taken away without an amendment to the Government of India Act, 1935.

11.165.58

B.R. Ambedkar

     The short title of the next Act was the Central Government and Legislature Amendment Act, 1949. That Act' sought to amend the India (Central Government and Legislature) Act, 1946 which is an Act of Parliament and not the Government of India Act, 1935. The other Act was the abolition of Privy Council Jurisdiction Act, 1949.

11.165.59

Hirday Nath Kunzru

  But the earlier Act to which my honourable Friend has referred, namely, the Amendment to the Central Legislature Act was itself an amendment of the Government of India Act.

11.165.60

B.R. Ambedkar

     No, no. That is not. There was a separate Act passed by Parliament called the India (Central Government and Legislature) Act 1946. This amendment was an amendment to that Act. That Act was outside the Government of India Act, 1935.

11.165.61

R. K. Sidhva

    Perhaps Dr. Ambedkar will remember that the amendment to the Act from Cotton Seeds to Cotton was really an amendment to the Government of India Act, to which he has made no mention.

11.165.62

B.R. Ambedkar

    This would mean a sixth Act no doubt but the short title is something quite different to the number of the Act. We are discussing the short titles.

11.165.63

T.T Krishnamachari

  This is a matter of nomenclature and in fact in the previous Acts amended by Parliament, they have given different names for Acts which in purport amended the Government of India Act, such as the India-Burma Emergency Powers Act, 1942. The matter of nomenclature need not be pursued to its logical and bitter end. I suggest the House to proceed with the consideration of the Bill.

11.165.64

Naziruddin Ahmad

   Is there any Act No. IV?

11.165.65

President

     There seems to be

11.165.66

B.R. Ambedkar

    There is.

11.165.67

Naziruddin Ahmad

    I have not got it.

11.165.68

B.R. Ambedkar

    If you have not a copy, what can we do?

11.165.69

President

     After all, nothing will turn upon the title!

11.165.70

B.R. Ambedkar

 I can give him the number also, if he wants it.

11.165.71

B.R. Ambedkar

     Act No. I of 1949 is called by the short title of "The Government of India (Amendment) Act 1949."

11.165.72

B.R. Ambedkar

     Act No. II of 1949 is called "The Government of India (Second Amendment) Act, 1949."

11.165.73

B.R. Ambedkar

     Act No. III of 1949 is called "The India (Central Government and Legislature) Amendment Act, 1949."

11.165.74

B.R. Ambedkar

     Act No. IV of 1949 is called "The Government of India (Third Amendment) Act 1949."

11.165.75

B.R. Ambedkar

     Act No. V of 1949 is called "The Abolition of Privy Council Jurisdiction Act, 1949."

11.165.76

B.R. Ambedkar

     Acts III and V have nothing to do with the Government of India Act, 1935 and that is why we call this the Fourth Amendment of the Government of India Act.

11.165.77

President

    The question is:

     "That in sub-clause (1) of clause 1, for the words 'Fourth Amendment' the words Third Amendment' be substituted."

The amendment was negatived.

11.165.78

President

    The question is:

      "That Clause 1 do stand part of the Bill."

The motion was adopted.

Clause 1 was added to the Bill.

Clause 2

11.165.79

Naziruddin Ahmad

     Sir, I beg to move :

     "That clause 2 be deleted."

11.165.80

Naziruddin Ahmad

     Sir, I also beg to move :

     "That in clause 2, the following statute reference be appended :

     '52 & 53 Vict., C.63.' "

11.165.81

Naziruddin Ahmad

     These amendments are of a formal character. So far as the last amendment is concerned, I move it because unlike the ordinary powers of the Secretary.....in ordinary legislation, we have in our rules no power given to the Secretary to make any changes in the Bill after it is passed. This statute reference is necessary and it should be given.

11.165.82

Naziruddin Ahmad

     So far as my earlier amendment is concerned, namely, the deletion of Clause 2, it arises in this way. When the last Act was passed, namely, Constituent Assembly Act No. V. at that time there was no such thing as Clause 2 in that Bill. Clause 2 is to the effect "that the interpretation Act 1889 applies for the interpretation of this Act as it applies to the interpretation of an Act of Parliament." In the earlier Acts this clause appears but not in the Bill which really culminated in Act No. V. At that time I suggested that a clause like this would be necessary but Dr. Ambedkar told the House at the time that this clause was; not at all necessary. It was not necessary in the case of Act No. V, I suppose it would not be necessary in the case of this Bill too. There should, after all, be some kind of uniformity. In the earlier Acts we have this clause but not in the last. We should adopt a definite and settled policy as to drafting. It should not depend on the mood of the moment. I would therefore ask Dr. Ambedkar to consider whether he should link himself with the drafting of Act No. V or really go back to the earlier Acts so as to retain this clause?

11.165.83

B.R. Ambedkar

      : All that I can say is that this is the uniform clause that has been passed by this Assembly in the other Acts amending the Government of India Act. Therefore, in order to keep up the uniformity and to provide for the interpretation of this particular Act, Clause 2 is a very necessary part of the Bill.

11.165.84

B.R. Ambedkar

     With regard to the suggestion of my friend all that it means is that there should be a marginal note giving the chapter number of the Interpretation Act of 1889. That is a matter for the Draftsman to consider, and if he thinks such a marginal note is necessary, he will no doubt consider the matter. But this marginal note is not added against the clause of the other Acts which amend the Government of India Act of 1935.

11.165.85

Naziruddin Ahmad

     : Although Dr. Ambedkar says that in all the previous Acts this clause appears, yet I beg to point out that in Act No. V, there is no such clause. I pointed out the omission but I was over-ruled.

11.165.86

B.R. Ambedkar

     : That was a self-contained Act. It required no reference to the Interpretation Act at all.

11.165.87

President

     : The question is :

     (a) "That clause 2 be deleted."

     (b) "That in clause 2, the following statute reference be appended :

'52 & 53 Vict. C.63.'"

The amendments were negatived.

11.165.88

President


      The question is :

     "That clause 2 stand part of the Bill."

The motion was adopted.

Clause 2 was added to the Bill.

Clause 3

11.165.89

Naziruddin Ahmad

     : This is only a punctuation amendment which, I think, the Drafting Committee would accept, though not openly, at least secretly.

11.165.90

H. V. Pataskar

      : Sir, I move :

     "That in clause 3, after the words 'alter the name of any Province' the words 'after ascertaining the opinion of the members of the Legislature of the Province whose name is proposed to be changed' be added."

11.165.91

H. V. Pataskar

     [[Now, Sir, my reasons for moving this amendment are these. From the Statement of objects and reasons it appears that the present Bill has been brought in this House for three reasons : the first is that certain Provincial Governments have expressed their desire to alter the name of the province – that is exactly what is mentioned in the statement of objects and reasons. The second reason for bringing this Bill is that these provincial Governments have further desired that these names should be altered before the commencement of this Constitution, that is, before the 26th of January 1950. The third reason is that there is no provision for doing that in the present Government of India Act, 1935.

11.165.92

H. V. Pataskar

     Now, Sir, it is true that there is no provision in the Government of India Act, 1935, for changing the name of a province. So far as the principle of my amendment is concerned, it is this that any change in the name should be effected after ascertaining the views of the legislature of the province whose name is proposed to be altered. I would like to draw your attention to article 3 which we have already passed. Article 3 makes provision for the alteration of the name of any state, which the provinces are going to be called hereafter. The proviso to article 3 reads :

     "Provided that no Bill for the purpose shall be introduced in either House of Parliament except on the recommendation of the President and unless, where the proposal contained in the Bill affects the boundaries of any State or States specified in Part A or Part B of the First Schedule or the name or names of any such State or States, the views of the Legislature of the State or, as the case may be, of each of the States both with respect to the proposal to introduce the Bill and with respect to the provisions thereof have been ascertained by the President."

11.165.93

H. V. Pataskar

     Therefore, we have already provided for such a change; if it is to be made after the 26th of January it can be made only by the introduction of a Bill, and such a Bill can be allowed to be introduced only after ascertaining the wishes of the Legislatures of the States concerned.

11.165.94

H. V. Pataskar

     Now, it may be argued that the Provincial Government have already expressed their desire. I do not know which Provincial Governments have expressed their desire, because from the nature of the discussions over the name "Aryavarta", and the heat which it generated I do not think, changing the name of a province is going to be such an easy thing as it is sought to be made out.

11.165.95

H. V. Pataskar

     It may again be argued that it is because of the Provincial Governments' desire that the names are going to be changed and therefore it practically amounts to ascertaining the views of the Legislature. I would here like to point out that the views of the Legislatures and the views of the Provincial Governments do not always coincide. It is one thing to ascertain the views of the Legislature which is composed of the representatives of the people, and another thing to consult the Provincial Governments which are concerned with the day to day administrative problems of the provinces. The principle that we have laid down in article 3 is a highly sound one inasmuch as it is a better method of ascertaining the views of the people in general, because the legislatures are expected to reflect the views of the people of the province.

11.165.96

H. V. Pataskar

     Now, Sir, without going into details I can easily show how anomalies are bound to arise. Take the case of West Bengal. At one time they were in favour of changing the name from West Bengal to Bengal. Subsequently, there was a change of mind and they wanted to retain it as West Bengal itself. In fact, in our final draft we have mentioned it as West Bengal. At the Third Reading Stage we again reverted back to the word "West Bengal". All these clearly show that even if a name is to be changed, we should ordinarily follow the sound principle which we have enunciated in article 3 that it should not be by the wishes of the Government which may be changing from time to time, but by the wishes of the Legislature which are likely to be more formal and firm.

11.165.97

H. V. Pataskar

     Then, Sir, take the name of Koushal Vidharbh. In our first draft we mentioned it as Koushal Vidharbh which must have been after consultation with the Provincial government. Subsequently they changed their mind and wanted to have it as Madhya Pradesh. Would it not be better, therefore to follow the sound principle laid down in article 3? Governments change their views with changing circumstances and Governments are not really representative of the people in the sense in which Legislatures of the provinces are.

11.165.98

President

     : I do not think that this is a proposition which requires so much of argument.

11.165.99

H. V. Pataskar

     : Another point that I want to make is this. In the Constitution we have laid down the principle which is enunciated in article 3. Today, just one day prior to the passing of the constitution, we want to go back on that principle, because some people seem to be in hurry to change the names of provinces. After all changing the name does not make much difference. As the poet said, a rose will smell as sweet if called by any other name. Therefore, why not stick to the principle enunciated in article 3? Why flout it at this stage? Well, Sir, I would strongly urge that it is a bad precedent, showing scanty regard for the principles which we have so solemnly laid down for those who come after us to follow.

11.165.100

H. V. Pataskar

     I would, therefore, request that this simple amendment of mine will be accepted by the Members of this House. The only argument against it would be that it would involve some time. Most of the names of the provinces, are names given by foreigners. It is much better that the changes in their names are made after ascertaining the views of the different legislatures and in a more calm atmosphere rather than hastily as is tried to be done by the introduction of this Bill.

11.165.101

R. K. Sidhva

     : Mr. President, my amendment reads thus :

     "That at the end of the proviso to sub-section (1) of section 290 of the Government of India Act, 1935, the following shall be added, namely :-

        'and any such Order made by the Governor-General shall be placed before the Parliament within three days of its making, and the Parliament shall have the right to either accept or reject the name contained in that Order.' "

11.165.102

R. K. Sidhva

     Sir, section 290 is in such a limited form that it is very difficult for any honourable member to move a comprehensive amendment to avoid any discrepancy or any suggestion which may not be found acceptable to the House or to the country; therefore within the limit within which the section is confined, namely to change the name of the Province, I had no other alternative but to move this amendment in order to safeguard the right of parliament and the people of this country in not allowing any province to change the name according to its whim and fancy. While I have every regard for any province which wants to change its name quite historically or quite suitably otherwise, the necessity for my amendment has been substantiated by the arguments advanced by my friend Mr. Mohan Lal Gautam. He came in a challenging mood and said his province was the supermost compared to all the other provinces. (Interruption.) My point is that if there are some Provinces with that kind of mentality, this House has a right to see that such a mentality does not prevail. I am glad, Sir, that among their own provincial Members there was difference of opinion in naming the province as Aryavarta.

11.165.103

President

     : Please do not bring in any particular name. You go on the merits of the case.

11.165.104

R. K. Sidhva

     : Well, Sir, what is the remedy? My friend Mr. Pataskar rightly apprehended the position and said there is no other alternative but to consult the legislature. The purpose of consulting the legislature also will not be served because the majority of the Members there would say, "Have it Aryavarta or Hindustan". Supposing they change it to Hindustan, what will be the remedy if the Provincial Legislature also says that U. P. will be known as Hindustan? India in future will be called Bharat but that does not mean that we discard the name Hindustan. Therefore you must tell me Sir how to safeguard the interests of the country in setting that this word Hindustan is not adopted by the U. P. as they did make a venture in the past unofficially to introduce it in the Congress Committee but in which they failed? Therefore, I want a little guidance in this matter either from the Chairman or from you, Sir, as to what safeguard we have. It is not a Province which can change the name, it is the Governor-General who does it.

11.165.105

Balkrishna Sharma

     : If it will satisfy my honourable friends, I may say I hate the word 'Hindustan'.

11.165.106

R. K. Sidhva

     : That is all right, but you did suggest for your Provincial Congress Committee the name of 'Hindustan Congress Committee' in 1939.

11.165.107

Mahavir Tyagi

     : You tell us those names which you do not want.

11.165.108

President

     : We are simply wasting time over a matter which does not require any interruption at all. The honourable Member may confine himself to his amendment.

11.165.109

R. K. Sidhva

     : I only want to safeguard the interests of the country, in the event of the Governor-General subscribing to the views of the Provincial Government or whosoever it may be, because it naturally seems that the Governor-General will adopt whatever suggestion a Province may make. In that event, if we feel that name which has been adopted is not proper in the interests of India, then my amendment seeks that parliament should have a right – because that will be the only body after the dissolution of this Constituent Assembly – to consider that subject. That is the only remedy I find. I do not find proper the remedy which you suggest that the Governor-General is himself the safeguard because according to me Parliament is the proper body in such an important matter. My friend Mr. Pataskar has rightly stated that we are doing this in a hurry. Why should we unnecessarily hurry about this matter? Why cannot we do it after 26th January? Let us decide in a calm mood. Let us consult everybody. You decided on one or two names and as Mr. Pataskar pointed out you had to change in this very Assembly two names within a short period.

11.165.110

R. K. Sidhva

     I have no other suggestions to make for safeguarding the proper method of avoiding any name which may be detrimental to the interests of the country. Therefore, I suggest this method. I hope my friend Dr. Ambedkar will kindly bear in mind my suggestion which I make with the best of intentions. If he has any suggestions let me know them I am prepared to accept them. My U. P. friends are unnecessarily annoyed. My suggestion is put forward with the best of intention as my experience has shown in the past. I hope my amendment will be accepted or alternatively any other suggestion may be put forward to safeguard the interests of the country.

11.165.111

President

     : Shri Jaspat Roy Kapoor, I request the honourable Member not to go into the merits of any particular names or any particular action which may have been taken by somebody in the past. He may confine himself to the proposition before the House.

11.165.112

Jaspat Roy Kapoor

      Mr. President, Sir, I am opposed to both the amendments, the one moved by Mr. Pataskar and the other by Mr. Sidhva. The question of naming of a Province has assumed very great importance, greater importance than honourable Members would like to attach even to the question of creation of a new Province or increasing or diminishing the area of any Province, for Shri Pataskar's amendment suggests that if the Governor-General passes an order changing the name of a Province only he must consult the Provincial Legislature before passing the order, and Shri Sidhva's amendment seeks that even after the Order is passed, by the Governor-General changing the name of a Province it should be placed before the Parliament and the Parliament should have the right to accept or reject the order previously made by the Governor-General. In the case of any other order passed by the Governor-General under section 290, creating a new Province, changing the boundaries of an existing Province, may be quietly accepted by the country as a whole with neither the legislature of that Province being consulted nor the Parliament having the right of say in the matter. It appears to me rather fantastic that the question of change of name should be considered so vitally important whereas the more vitally important question relating to the creation of a Province should not attract any attention of honourable Members at all. I must submit that the manner in which the United Provinces has been dragged in this controversy hurts us because we of the United Provinces had always thought that we have been throughout acting in a manner which would receive the approbation of the rest of the country. As my honourable Friend Mr. Mohan Lal Gautam had said, there is absolutely no provincialism in our Province and we had therefore thought that some credit would be given to us by Members of other Provinces and they would give us at least the freedom of giving a suitable name to our province.

11.165.113

President

     : Your Province does not come in here.

11.165.114

Jaspat Roy Kapoor

  I was mentioning it just incidentally, Sir. I would not pursue it in view of the shortness of time.

11.165.115

Jaspat Roy Kapoor

     My objection is to Mr. Pataskar's amendment, firstly on the ground that it simply does not fit in with section 290, and then that if it is accepted as it is worded it would simply set the legislature against the Government of the province and the Government against the Legislature, for Mr. Pataskar does not want to make any amendment to the proviso to section 290 of the Government of India Act which says that before an order under that section is passed by the Governor-General the Provincial Government should be consulted. According to the proviso the views of the Government of the province should be ascertained. Now what Mr. Pataskar suggests is that the views of the legislature should also be ascertained. Therefore it comes to this that firstly the views of the legislature should be ascertained and thereafter under the proviso, the views of the Government should be also ascertained. If it is presumed that the views of the Government and those of the legislature will not be different the amendment of Mr. Pataskar will be unnecessary and redundant. If their views are going to be different......

11.165.116

H. V. Pataskar

     : There are instances in which those views have been different.

11.165.117

Jaspat Roy Kapoor

   : Well, if there are such instances, we sitting here in the Constituent Assembly should not give encouragement for such differences of opinion. Our object should be to bring about conciliation between the legislature and the Government and not to create further occasions for such differences of opinion. Therefore I submit that the amendment simply does not fit in here.

11.165.118

Jaspat Roy Kapoor

     As regards the amendment moved by Mr. Sidhva, I would say that Mr. Sidhva has a very fertile brain and he can conceive of all sorts of amendments. But I never thought that even he is capable of conceiving an amendment of this kind which is almost meaningless. He suggests that the order of the Governor-General should be placed before Parliament and that Parliament should have the right either to accept it or reject it. Of course it would not have any power to amend the order. It can only either accept the name which has been approved by the Governor-General or reject it. Now, what will happen if the name proposed in the order is rejected by Parliament? That will create a lacuna. Therefore I suggest that Mr. Sidhva's amendment is almost meaningless. Then again, this amendment of Mr. Sidhva is that it should be added to existing proviso. It means that the amendment of Mr. Sidhva would apply to all the orders which would be passed by the Governor-General under section 290 such as those relating to the creation of a new province, changing the boundaries of a province, etc. I do not think it is the intention of Mr. Sidhva that his amendment should be of such an all-embracing nature. But, as it has been worded, it would be applicable to all the orders passed by the Governor-General under section 290. I think Mr. Sidhva has not given careful consideration to his amendment. On reconsideration I am sure he will not press it. For these reasons I oppose both these amendments.

11.165.119

M. Thirumala Rao

      May I say a word, Sir?

11.165.120

President

    : I cannot stop any Member from speaking. But Members will remember that we have still several Members desirous of speaking on the Constitution.

11.165.121

M. Thirumala Rao

     : I assure you, Sir, that I am not standing up merely to join in the debate. I have one point to make in connection with this Bill.

11.165.122

President

     : All that I can say is that the honourable member is taking away the time of others who want to speak, but have not been allowed an opportunity to do so. The honourable Member has had his say already on the Constitution.

11.165.123

     : 'Closure'.

11.165.124

President

     : I would draw the attention of the honourable member to the demand for closure of the debate.

11.165.125

M. Thirumala Rao

      Is it fair, Sir, that I should be asked to sit down because closure has just now been moved?

11.165.126

M. Thirumala Rao

     Sir, I have only a simple proposition to make. I do not mind whether the House accepts or rejects my proposition. I do not know why, when the Government bring in a measure before the House, the House should be deprived of an opportunity of judging whether the proposition is right or wrong. But this can be brought up after January 26. Nothing is going to happen if this proposition is brought before the House under article 3 of the Constitution. The Government can very well, in view of the discussion that has been raised here, withdraw the Bill now.

11.165.127

     : Sir, may I.

11.165.128

President

     : No further discussion please.

11.165.129

      I want to say that when a provincial Government agrees to change the name of its province, as in the case of Assam which wanted to change the spelling of the name of the Province from 'Assam' to 'Assam', and the Prime Minister.........

11.165.130

President

     : The question does not arise in connection with this Bill.

11.165.131

     : An amendment to bring about this change was not allowed to be moved. But I understand from the Premier of Assam that the Government have agreed..........

11.165.132

President

     : You may raise this question at the appropriate time, but not in this connection.

11.165.133

     : But, Sir, I have ...........

11.165.134

President

     : I have ruled that the question does not arise now.

11.165.135

B.R. Ambedkar

     : Sir, dealing first with the amendment of Mr. Pataskar, I am afraid I must point out that it would not fit in within the framework of section 290. My friend does not seem to have noticed that to the various sub-clauses of clause (1) of section 290 there is a general proviso which applies to all the sub-clauses (a), (b), (c) and (d). If he refers to that proviso he will find that his amendment would introduce double conditions for the operation of the new clause, namely sub-clause (e). Sub-clause (e) would be subject to the condition he wants to lay down in his amendment, namely, 'after ascertaining the opinion of the members of the legislature of the province whose name is proposed to be changed'. In addition to that, sub-clause (e) would also be governed by the proviso, namely that the Governor-General shall ascertain the views of the Government of the province. In view of this there would arise a very difficult condition. According to his amendment, the Governor-General will be bound to ascertain the wishes of the legislature. According to the proviso to section 290, he will be bound to ascertain the views of the Government of the province. He will therefore put himself in a double difficulty by reason of the fact that the Governor-General will have to consult two different bodies. That is not going to be a very easy matter. Secondly, he would realise that it is not quite justifiable that sub-clause (a) to (d) should be governed by a single proviso, while the new sub-clause (e) should be governed by two provisos.

11.165.136

H. V. Pataskar

     : That is not so.

11.165.137

B.R. Ambedkar

     : That is what I say. How do you know? Therefore it seems to me that he is putting himself and the Governor-General in a somewhat difficult position by making such a suggestion. I do not therefore think that at this stage it would be logical to accept it, whatever be the merits of the suggestion.

11.165.138

B.R. Ambedkar

     Coming to the amendment of my friend, Mr. Sidhva, he seems to me to have completely confused the intention of this article and the provisions contained in the new Constitution. He speaks of Parliament and requires that the Order made by the Governor-General be placed within three days of its making before Parliament. Mr. Sidhva has evidently forgotten that, when he speaks of the Parliament, he speaks of the Legislature which comes into being on the 26th January 1950. On that date the Governor-General disappears, and this section 290 as well as the sub-clause (e) which I am trying to introduce by this measure will also disappear. On the 26th January what will be on the Statute Book and operative would be the provisions contained in article 3 of the new Constitution. He has, I am sorry to say, not paid sufficient attention to the point that I have sought to make.

11.165.139

R. K. Sidhva

     : What the Governor-General does will be binding upon the President.

11.165.140

B.R. Ambedkar

     : It seems to me that both these suggestions are impracticable. As to the general proposition whether Parliament should be brought in or not, we have to deal with two matters. One is that there is a general desire on the part of some of the provinces that the names by which they have been called under the Government of India Act 1935 do not smell sweet according to them, and they would like to begin with the names which they think are good enough for them on the date on which the Constitution commences. The Constituent Assembly felt at the time when the matter was discussed last time that this desire of some of the provinces whose names are not good enough in their own opinion has a good case and therefore a provision ought to be made for the Governor-General before the commencement of this Constitution to take such action as he thinks necessary to carry out the desires of the Provinces. Therefore it seems to me that such a provision is necessary.

11.165.141

B.R. Ambedkar

      A certain amount of fear has been expressed that some provinces might suggest to the Governor-General names which may not be possible in the opinion of the other provinces, and consequently names which have been rejected by this House or disapproved by this House may be given to the new provinces without the knowledge of this Constituent Assembly or without the consent of the provincial legislatures concerned. It seems to me that that sort of suggestion is reading too much into section 290 as amended by this Bill, because under section 290 the Governor-General has absolute discretion in this matter and is not bound to act upon the suggestion made either by the Provincial Government or, if I accept the amendment of Mr. Pataskar, the opinion of the legislature. He is free to act and the only authority who is to advise him to act is the Cabinet at the Centre. All that is required under section 290 is to ascertain the views of the Government of the Province. That does not mean that the Governor-General is bound to accept any name that has been suggested. I am quite certain in my own mind that the discussion that has taken place in this House, the opinions expressed by this House on the suggestion made by Professor Saksena in regard to the name of the United Provinces will be taken into consideration by the Central Executive and by the Governor-General before he decides to take any action under the proposed amendment to article 290.

11.165.142

President

      I will now put the amendments to the vote. Mr. Naziruddin Ahmad, do you want your amendment to be put to the vote? It is only a matter of punctuation?

11.165.143

Naziruddin Ahmad

     : It may be left to the Drafting Committee.

11.165.144

B.R. Ambedkar

     : It is a wrong amendment.

11.165.145

Naziruddin Ahmad

     : If it is openly put to the vote, it will be rejected. Otherwise, they might accept it.

11.165.146

President

     : The question is :

     "That in clause 3, after the words 'alter the name of any Province' the words 'after ascertaining the opinion of the members of the Legislature of the Province whose name is proposed to be changed' be added."

The amendment was negatived.

11.165.147

President


      The question is :

     "That at the end of the proviso to sub-section (1) of section 290 of the Government of India Act, 1935, the following be added, namely: -

     'and any such Order made by the Governor-General shall be placed before the Parliament within three days of its making, and the Parliament shall have the right to either accept or reject the name contained in that Order."

The amendment was negatived.

11.165.148

President

      The question is :

     "That clause 3 stand part of the Bill."

The motion was adopted.

Clause 3 wad added to the Bill.
 

11.165.149

President

      The question is :

     "That the Preamble stand part of the Bill."

The motion was adopted.

The preamble was added to the Bill.

11.165.150

President

      The question is :

     "That the title stand part of the Bill.

The motion was adopted.

The title was added to the Bill.

11.165.151

B.R. Ambedkar

: Sir, I move :

     "That the Bill further to amend the Government of India Act, 1935, as settled by the Assembly, be passed."

11.165.152

Tajamul Hussain

      [[Mr. President, Sir, we have, got before us a Bill to amend the Government of India Act of 1935 the repeal of which is to take effect from the 26the January 1950. Therefore, Sir, we want this Bill only for two months. Why this hurry? Under the Government of India Act there is no provision for altering the names of provinces. We want to alter the name of one province or more than one province. Therefore we have this Bill. I am absolutely unable to understand the necessity of this Bill at all. I have come here to oppose this Bill entirely. I feel we can very well wait for two months more. We want that this Bill should take effect from the 26th November, that is from tomorrow, instead of waiting for two months more. The whole of the Government of India Act will itself be repealed by our passing this Constitution. We have mentioned there that the Government of India Act 1935 will stand repealed from the 26th January 1950. Then why this hurry for the change in the names of Provinces? You can very well do it after two months. You can decide now that you want to change the name of the U. P. or any other province and then that can take effect from the 26th January. I have very strong objection to this. We are spending on this Constituent Assembly Rs.30,000 a day. We work for five hours a day. That means that we are spending Rs.6,000 per hour. How we have been talking on this Bill which I consider to be absolutely unnecessary for an hour and twenty minutes, and by the time I finish, it will be an hour and a half. It means that Rs.9,000 will be wasted, because I think this is an absolute waste of time. With these words, Sir, I want to oppose this. I think it should not be pressed and should be withdrawn. With these words, Sir, I oppose the Bill entirely.

11.165.153

President

: The question is :

     "That the Bill further to amend the Government of India Act, 1935, as settled by the Assembly, be passed."

The motion was adopted.

DRAFT CONSTITUTION – (Contd.)

11.165.154

President

     Then we take up the discussion of the Draft Constitution. I am afraid I had thought that this Bill would take about a quarter of an hour, but instead it has taken six quarters of an hour and naturally as many speakers as could have been accommodated if we had started say at quarter past Ten cannot be accommodated now. Even in the list I have, I have got about 20 names still there. I thought of accommodating at least fifteen today but now I do not think I can accommodate anything like that number. I will leave it to the Members who will speak to take as little time as possible so that as many of them as wish to take part in the debate may be accommodated. I may assure them that. I have been all through the debate from the beginning; I have not missed a single word or a single sentence of any Member; there is nothing new that can be said by any Member and the only object in speaking at this stage is not to add anything to the knowledge or to the information which has been given to the House to enable it to decide about the merits of the Constitution but to enable Members to have their names recorded, so that when the reports are published, they may know that they also participated in the final discussions of the Bill and that can be done with one sentence. I assure them that their names will go down on the record even if they support the Bill with one single sentence and with this suggestion I now ask the honourable Members to take up the discussion.

11.165.155

      Mr. President, Sir, first of all I wish to thank you for the unfailingly courteous and gracious manner in which you have invariably presided over the deliberations of this House. Deserving tribute has already been paid to the Drafting Committee for the way in which it has performed its arduous and responsible duties. I would like very briefly to pay a particular tribute to my honourable Friend, who is sitting on my right, Dr. Ambedkar. I do not believe that any one of us can really gauge the volume of work and the intensity of concentration that must have been involved in the production of this voluminous and by no means easy document. And while, on occasions, I may not have agreed with him, it always gave me the very greatest pleasure to listen to his tremendous grasp not only of fundamentals but of details, of the clarity with which he invariably presented his case. It has been said that this Constitution has received a mixed reception. It is inevitable that its reception should have been mixed because, inevitably, it is a mixed constitution. It is composite in character. I believe that it is a blend and a proper blend between idealism on the one side and realism on the other. I know that some of my ardently idealistic friends have criticized it. They would like to have seen instead of this blend something in the nature of a decalogue or the Ten Commandments, something which was so wholly idealistic that it would have wilted and died under the first impact of administrative realities and political difficulties.

11.165.156

     As I have said, I believe that we have borrowed enough from idealism to make the Constitution a fairly attractive and an aspiring document and on the other hand we have not based it entirely on material, from mundane considerations so as to retard or in any way to take away from this the inspiring elements. I realize, sir, that it is not a perfect document, but at the same time I feel that in hammering it out, we have traversed all the processes of the democratic manufactory, that we have ranged through the whole gamut of democratic factors; there has been careful thought; there has been close analysis; there has been argument and counter-argument; there has been fierce controversy and at one time I thought that the controversy was so fierce that we might reach the stage of what the Romans called Argumentum ad baculum that is, settling it by actual physical force. But in the final analysis has pervaded a real sense of accommodation and a real feeling of forbearance.

11.165.157

     So far as the minority provisions are concerned, Sir, I cannot speak on behalf of any other minority but I do claim to speak on behalf of the Anglo-Indian Community. I have paid repeated tributes to the generous and understanding way in which the Anglo-Indian Community has been dealt with under this Constitution. All I feel I need say at this moment is to reiterate my own gratitude and appreciation for the very generous way in which the Anglo-Indian community has been treated.

11.165.158

     Now I shall deal very briefly with certain aspects of the Constitution. I agree with my honourable Friend, Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru when he says that it might have been wiser for us not to have extended the franchise at one bound to universal suffrage. I recall the experience in Britain and the precedent of Britain. I am aware that the precedents and experience in other countries are not sacrosanct for us. But what happened in Britain in this matter of franchise? Representative parliamentary Government was introduced in Britain in the 19thCentury but it was not till as recently as 1928 that universal franchise or adult suffrage was introduced. Though some of us are in the habit of talking about democracy without understanding its real purpose and its real content, to my mind a mere counting of heads has never constituted democracy. Democracy has always carried the postulate, the implication that at least the exercise of the franchise would be made, if not on an essentially rationalistic basis, would be made at least on a common-sense basis. And my own feeling is, Sir, that if we had pursued the path of wisdom – more than that – of statesmanship, that we would have been justified to hasten slowly in this matter, that we would have not at one bound adopted the device of adult franchise but will have proceeded progressively not necessarily gradually but progressively. As it is I am one of those who can only express the very sincere hope that when the next elections are fought or the elections after that and with an electorate which will be predominantly illiterate, with an electorate which will be predominantly unaware of exercising the franchise on a basis of being able to analyse political issues in a rational way, that this electorate will not be stampeded by empty slogans by meretricious shibboleths into chasing political chimeras which will not only lead to chaos but to the very destruction of the democracy which we have chosen to give them.

11.165.159

     And, Sir, I feel that there has been unjustified criticism of what has been stigmatized as over-centralization. I will say quite frankly that I was very happy, I was jubilant at every provision that tended to place more and more power into the hands of the Centre. Here again, we tend to mouth slogans about democracy but in the final analysis, in its actual spirit and content, what does democracy imply? It does imply the greatest good of the greatest number I say it with regret, I say it without pointing a finger, what is the increasing evidence which rises every day before our eyes, evidence with regard to most of the Provincial administrations? Do we not see that there is an increasing evidence every day, of increasing maladministration, of an increasing negation of the fundamental principles of democracy? Quite frankly, in the transition stage I would have been one of those who would have supported our going the whole hog that we should have avowedly and without any qualification accepted a unitary form of Government. We might have administered the provinces either through Governors or Rajpramukhs supported by a permanent civil service. At any rate, Sir, I feel that I ought to place on record my disappointment that certain vital subjects like Education, Health and Police should have been left entirely within the ambit of provincial autonomy. We have given a head to provincial regimes in the matter of education, and today, I regret to say, within a very short time, they have taken the bit between their teeth and are running wild. What is happening in the Central Provinces? When I say this, I say advisedly, that the educational policy of the central Provinces represents a deliberate negation of democracy, represents a travesty of the provisions of secular democracy. The linguistic minorities in the Central provinces only look forward to educational and linguistic death. That is what is happening. They have no regard for the linguistic minorities. Overnight they are pursuing an intolerant, parochial, aggressive linguistic policy which, as I said, is an absolute negation of every provision we have embodied in the fundamental rights. Not only that. You have given a head to these provinces and they are running amock. National progress, the larger interests of the country mean nothing to them. My own conviction is that a few years will be sufficient to make the leaders of the country realise the great blunder that we have committed in allowing education to remain entirely in the provincial sphere. You will see balkanisation of the country will take place so quickly, because through this powerful lever which you have left in the hands of the provinces they will split this country up into linguistic enclaves, seal one from the other, so that the idea of a common nationality will recede more and more into the background. I feel very strongly about this. I do not know how the damage that is going to be done can be undone, unless some radical steps are taken in the not distant future.

11.165.160

     Another matter which I would have liked to have brought at least in the Concurrent List is Health. May is say, Sir, in some provinces, it is all right. Bombay is fortunate in having a person of the stature of Kherji. The country would have been more fortunate to have transported outstanding men from the provinces to the Centre to administer the country on a unitary basis. As I said, about health, we have left it in the hands of the provincial Governments and inevitably this greatest nation building subject will be dealt with in a feeble, halting manner, according to the different capacities of the different provincial regimes.

11.165.161

     Last but not least, I should like to have seen police made central subject. Police in a province like Bombay have a deservedly good reputation. But, let us be honest. What kind of reputation or lack of reputation do the police administrations in many of the provinces enjoy? What does the man in the street think of the police regimes in many of the provinces? I know what he thinks you know what he thinks. The police have fallen into disrepute in many of the provinces. They are not regarded as guardians of law and order but as agencies of corruption and oppression. I should like very much to have been the Police administration at least brought on to the Concurrent List.

11.165.162

     May I say a word about the Directive Principles? I know my honourable Friend Mr. Kher will not agree with what I say and my views will be regarded as heterodox and as perhaps striking a discordant note. I would not like to have seen prohibition put in the Directive Principles. I am not advocating the cause of drunkards or drunkenness. Far from it. I think prohibition as an ideal is a very good ideal. But, what I am afraid of is this: having put this into the Directive Principles, once again, you are giving a head to certain provinces which, without considering the realities, may rush ahead with this scheme. I am one of those who regard it probably from a rationalistic point of view or from the point of view of a psychologist. I regard this question of prohibition fundamentally as a psychological problem. I believe that there is a fundamental similarity in human nature everywhere, and that an Indian is no different in certain fundamentals from an European. I believe that essentially legislation in this matter has tended to be resented and regarded as an entrenchment on the domain of private life and private liberty. As I was trying to explain to my honourable Friend Mr. Kher will you be able to legislate for morality? Can you create morality through legislation? You can ever do it; it has never been possible. I agree you may be able to wean certain people from drinking provided your process and programme of prohibition was so graduated and you accompanied it pari passu with measures of social reform. As long as you have your chawals for workers in the urban areas, and you cannot even provide them with a semblance of decent living conditions, what is the good of trying to make them moral or weaning them from drunkenness by legislation? As an ideal, I have nothing against it. What I am against is this. While the Prime Minister keeps on asking us to let first things come first, we have fallen into the unfortunate habit of making last things come first. What should be the first priority in any administration? What are the most urgent nation-building activities on which we should concentrate? Surely, health and education. But, today, ask your average provincial Government what it is doing in these matters. It pleads poverty on the one hand in the matter of the most urgent nation-building subjects which should have received top priority, and on the other hand chases these idealistic chimeras. We are throwing away crores and crores of Rupees. That is my main objection to the precipitate introduction of a measure like prohibition. Not that I have any radical objection against it; as an ideal it is a very good thing and if we succeed, it will be a great boon to many families.

11.165.163

     While on the matter of Directive Principles, I would like to refer to this provision regarding cow slaughter. I know, again, here, that I will be treading on difficult ground. But, I want to make my position clear. What I resent in this Directive Principle is the insidious way in which this provision with regard to the banning of cow slaughter has been brought in. It was not there before. I cannot help saying that those fanatics and extremists who could not bring in this provision through the front door have succeeded in bringing it through the back-door. Sir, I am not a beef eater; I am not holding a brief for beef eaters. I say, you may ban co-slaughter, but we should have done it honestly without our tongues in our cheeks, without resorting to methods which may give rise to the accusation of subterfuge. I ask my Hindu friends, does cow-slaughter offend your religious susceptibilities.

11.165.164

K. Hanumanthaiya

     : Yes; it does.

11.165.165

      All right; I am glad you have said so. I you had said that, I would have sponsored a provision that a ban on cow-slaughter should have been introduced in the Fundamental Rights and that cow-slaughter should be made a cognisable offence. But, there were not people who were prepared to do that. Why bring in this provision in an indirect way? If it offends your religious susceptibilities, just as much as I expect you to respect my religious susceptibilities. I am prepared to respect yours. As I said, why bring it in, in this indirect way, as an afterthought into the Directive Principles? Look at the way you have brought it in. The clause reads :

     "for the purpose of protecting the cattle wealth of India, for the purpose of protecting cattle, milch and draught cattle, a ban on cattle slaughter may be imposed."

11.165.166

K. Hanumanthaiya

      On a point of order, Sir, is it right for the honourable Member to attribute motives, subterfuge and all that? I draw your kind attention to it. The honourable Member is saying that we have introduced a provision by way of a subterfuge. He has attributed motives in regard to the way we have put in this provision in the Directive Principles. Whether attributing motives is right, I leave it to you, Sir to Judge.

11.165.167

     : I apologise to you and to the House if what I may have said even remotely raises the suggestion of unparliamentary language. I was not attributing motives. I am merely stating objectively what had happened. As I have said, what has happened raises the accusation that perhaps motives may have been there to bring in this provision in an indirect way; I will not say it tantamounts to subterfuge. As I have said, I repeat, if this gives you offence, I would have been the first person to suggest that it should have formed part of the Fundamental Rights. In the way it has been done, it has been attached to a clause purporting to protect the cattle wealth of this country. Any child knows that in this country, in proportion to the population, we have more cattle than in any other country in the world. Any intelligent child also knows that in spite of this huge cattle population, our output for milch and draught purposes is the lowest per capita in the world. The preservation of cattle-wealth and the preservation of the best interests of the country would have required not the banning of cattle slaughtering but the slaughtering of over half of your present cattle population in this country. That is why I say, it should not have been done in this particular way. I only draw your attention to it and I leave it at that.

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     Finally I wish, to say a word about article 21. As a lawyer I will say quite clearly that this article 21 which says that a person may not be deprived of his life or liberty except by procedure of law as established, gave me cause for considerable misgivings. I am afraid, that in this form article 21, if the Executive and Government of the day choose to, can be abused and made a handle for totalitarian oppression. The Executive can make it a handle for superseding rule of law they can make it a handle for depriving citizens of the elementary principles of natural justice, and of jurisprudence. But the reason why it was disposed not to oppose this particular article, the reason why we are prepared to suffer an abatement of what I regard as a Fundamental human right – was because we are in a period of transition – and it may be necessary to give Governments and administrators extraordinary powers, not to be abused but in order to prevent any drift towards chaos and towards anarchy. And with that warning I sincerely hope that there will be no tendency on the part of any Provincial Government or on the part of Central Government to misuse or abuse the tremendous powers which we have given them under article 21. If they choose to, all that is required is that the procedure of law should be observed. We hope that the procedure of law which will be prescribed by provincial or Central Government will not be such as to represent the negation of the principle of natural justice.

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     May I end on this note – I believe that by and large we have hammered out a good Constitution. It will be fallible and it will be necessarily imperfect as it is the product of imperfect human beings. But I believe we have done a good job of work and I believe that this Constitution deserves not only our good wishes but our blessings. But in sending it out on its mission with these blessings, I feel that the paramount consideration which should be before us permanently is not that we have framed a voluminous and important document – not that we have sought to give careful and elaborate guarantees to minorities, but that ultimately the final test by which this Constitution will be judged and by which it will stand or fall, the final test will be the intention and the spirit with which the provisions of this Constitution are worked.

11.165.170

      Mr. President, Sir, it is rather hard lines for one who is garrulous to be limited to stated time, the more so, when he is called upon to speak at the fag end of the deliberations of this Assembly. On the eve of our concluding our deliberations it is not without some trepidation that I come to speak and it is aggravated by the fact that I am to speak for a very short time. I had intended to review the whole position but this is not the opportunity for it. You very well remember how we had lisped, - we hesitated to talk in full and in clear language, the words "Constituent Assembly " in 1927; then we renewed our talks in 1934, soon after the failure of our Second Salt' Satyagrahic campaign and then we thought we were covering our retreat with bluff. Finally we came to a stage – all unawares –when this Constituent Assembly of a sort was thrust upon us with its sections and groups which we fortunately got rid of by paying a very heavy price for it and when we began our deliberations on the 9th December 1946 we were anxious to finish them and some of us had even hoped to finish our deliberations within six months. If we had finished our Constitution in 1946 it would have been a mess, if we had finished it in 1948 it would have been a medley. Fortunately this delay that has occurred has enabled us to see things in their true perspective and it has enabled us to develop administrative changes pari passu political developments. Supposing we had finished this before 15th August 1947, what would have been the nature of the Constitution? It would have been quite different. This delay has enabled the legacy which we had inherited from the British to be set right. Many people have considered that this Constitution is a base or bare imitation of the 1935 Act – that the Constitution is not a 'revolutionary document' and that we have merely imitated where we should have originated. These are all half-truths. A 'revolutionary document' is a contradiction of terms. Revolutions do not yield documents nor documents beget revolutions. We have imitated the 1935 Act because through a fortunate or unfortunate chance, it turned out that it was not through a bloody revolution that we have worked out our emancipation. It was by an imperceptible transition from the stage of bureaucracy and dependence to the stage of a republic and cooperative commonwealth that we have wrought these transformations. Accordingly we have never faced martial law, we have never hanged people at street-corners or on tree tops, we have never shot down people for their crimes and we have never shed a drop of blood either our own or of our enemies and therefore we have been obliged to pass from a civil government where tranquility prevailed unaffected by the perturbations of the moment into another kind of civil government which was our own and which was also a popular government. This delay has enabled us and our new administrators to piece together the 562 States which were detached and altogether unconnected with one another. Thus it is that while we were developing the Constitution or making efforts in the process of developing this Constitution, we were also taking up administrative measures in order to consolidate this country which we had inherited from the British in a very disorganized condition.

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     What is it that we inherited? We inherited a country that was divided longitudinally into Provinces and States, horizontally into communities, transversely into rural and urban areas and obliquely into Scheduled and non-Scheduled Tribes. All these have been pieced together – the Provinces must be there for purposes of administration convenience, but the States have been assimilated in their forms of Government into those of the Provinces. Thus we have one homogeneous country under one Central Government with one federal Structure. Then we have disestablished the separate electorates which the Britishers had brought into existence assiduously from 1906 onwards dividing one community from another, first the Muslims from Hindus, later the Sikhs from the Hindus and finally the Harijans from Hindus. All these groups have been pieced together into one joint electorate and this is not a small achievement.

11.165.172

     And next, you have also been able to remove untouchability which had divided one section of Hindus from the rest. Mahatmaji began his fast unto death on the 20th September 1932 and worked a miracle in the space of six days. Now we have removed untouchability not merely in name, not merely in word and spirit, but also in law, so that nobody can hereafter say that so-and-so is an untouchable, for he would be punished with fine and imprisonment. We have also assimilated the tribes in our frontiers in the north-west and north-east and in other places as far as possible to progressive forms of Government, and we have built up tribal republics. In this manner we have implemented in developing our Constitution, those principles which have been advocated by Mahatmaji. You may remember in his tours of 1921, he was always mentioning only three sentences in each village and taking away three to thirty thousands of rupees from there. These related to Khaddar, Untouchability and Hindu-Muslim Unity. Khaddar we have perpetuated as the fore-runner of village industries and we have emphasised the development of cottage handicrafts in the development of the country. Untouchability we have removed by law. Hindu-Muslim unity we have carved out by joint electorates.

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      Prohibition?

11.165.174

      Prohibition is a thing which has been left to the Provinces to be worked out. We have included it as one of the Directives in our Constitution. It will be great moral reform, the monetary equivalent of which may mean loss to the government of the province, but the moral equivalent of it would be a great asset to the nation in future years. (Cheers)

11.165.175

     And, finally, we have extended the franchise which gave us three and a half crores of voters at the time when the British left this country, to seventeen crores of voters who will adorn the electoral rolls immediately next year.

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     It is thus that we have converted a dependency into a cooperative commonwealth. Who dares to say that this not an achievement worthy of our labours, and worthy of this great country, and all in the space of three years? When Canada was emancipated, her people assembled in 1842 when Lord Durham, the Lord High Commissioner was dubbed by the London Times as the "Lord High Seditioner," and the Canadian Constitution was only finalised in 25 years thereafter, i.e. in 1867, whereas we have taken three years in order to complete this Constitution.

11.165.177

     I wish to draw attention only to two points with regard to the contents of our Constitution, the one dealing with the Fundamental Rights and the other dealing with the Comptroller and Auditor-General.

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     The Fundamental Rights chapter is of great interest to me since we had laid down the foundations of it at my house at Masulipatam through the labours of a committee which was appointed in Karachi in April 1931. Then we wanted to speak of not merely fundamental rights but also fundamental duties. But it did not look as if these were capable of being tabulated, because in the first instance every right implies and includes a duty. What is my right is my neighbour's duty to me. The right of the wife to equality with the husband is the duty of the husband towards the wife in respect of the matter of equality. The right of the people to rebel against a government is also the duty of the government to hang the people for the rebellion. These go together. They are opposites, rather they are the obverse and the reverse of the coin, and the criticism that has been levelled by some friends in this House that the duties were not mentioned, is not quite correct because every right implies and includes a duty.

11.165.179

     The second point on which I wish to say something is about the Comptroller and the Auditor-General, and in that we have done a great thing, in respect of the position that we have assigned to the Comptroller and the Auditor-General. No matter how perfect your Constitution may be, no matter how numerous may be the checks and the balances and safeguards for the right conduct of business of the future, it is money that counts, and we have to deal with about three hundred and seventy crores at the Centre and as much money in the provinces, and if all this money is not spent aright, and if the people deliver cheap gibes at men like me who count rupees, annas and pies, and to whom every rupee means sixteen annas and every anna means twelve pies, then there is no government at all worth mentioning, it is anarchy, it is chaos. It is loot. It is dacoity. And who is to control this? Is it to be a man who is appointed by the Ministry that should control this? No. The Comptroller and the Auditor-General must be as supreme and independent as the Judges of the Supreme Court perhaps even more so. He is not merely an Accountant-General, but he represents a judicial authority with a judicial frame of mind, and his acts must be acts of justice between what he considers to be right and what is actually done by the executive. At times he is called upon to criticise the executive and to expose it even to contempt. He should not therefore, come under the ire of the government or of any party or of the treasury or of the Finance Department. Till 1806 in England the Auditor-General was not independent, and till 1921 in this country we never thought of the independence of the Auditor-General. Later on we have built up this kind of independence, step by step and stage by stage, so that today, we have installed him as the supreme master, who has his own judgment to look to and who has no frowns or favours to be guided by from outside. Even so this is not yet perfect. The Auditors' Act is yet to be passed in this country, as in other self-governing countries and when this is done, we shall have placed the Auditor-General and the Comptroller as the supreme arbiter of India's finances, and then alone our Swaraj will be a proper Swaraj.

11.165.180

     Finally let me ask you:- "What after all is a constitution?" It is a grammar of politics, if you like, it is a compass to the political mariner. However good it may be, by itself it is inanimate, it is insensitive, and it cannot work by itself. It is of use to us only in the measure in which we are able to use it, because it has tremendous reserve force, and everything depends upon the manner in which we approach it, whether we observe the letter and ignore the spirit or whether we observe both the letter and the spirit in equal measure. The words of the lexicon are the same, but they give rise to different styles of composition with different authors. The tunes and the notes are the same, but they give rise to different music with different singers. The colours and the brushes are the same, but they are rendered into different pictures by different painters. So it is with a Constitution. It depends upon how we work it. I shall take only one simple example – the joint electorate. We have established the joint electorate. Have we discharged our duty? Shall we leave the electorate to do what it pleases? The Muslims are some thirty-five millions in this country, less than about 8 to 7 per cent. of the whole population. Is it possible for them in the joint electorate to win a single seat by their own unaided strength, without our co-operation? It is a gentleman's agreement that we have entered into, a terrible responsibility that we have taken upon our shoulders, when we asked them to give up their reservations and their separate electorates. We have to find as many representatives from the Muslim community through the medium of the joint electorate as would have been their legitimate share, if they had their separate electorates. Even so with the Indian Christians and others. And the way to all this was pointed by our women. I admire the women who in the Provincial Model Constitution Committee and in the Central Constitution Committee came forward and said, "No separate electorate for women, no reservation for women". Of course, they stand to gain now. But it required courage and imagination to say so then. They showed the way to the Muslims. The Christians had all along been fighting against reservation and separate electorates. But they had been compartmentalized. All the electorates were made not only water-tight, and air-tight but vote-tight; nobody from this compartment could cast his vote to one in the other.

11.165.181

     The majority community has to see to it that this implied gentlemen's agreement is honoured in letter and in spirit and that we give our friends more seats that their population entitles them to receive. If we are not able to do that we shall not be able to justify the great concessions that they have made.

11.165.182

     Then again, there is the question of non-violence. Have we been true to Gandhiji's teachings? Yes. We have been. We have carried out his wishes to the last. If at all, Gandhiji was not able to get his wishes carried out, it was only during his own life-time that he failed; for he had set his face against partition yet ultimately he had to yield to it. Otherwise, the cardinal principles, like the four-pronged attack against the British and also the mission of reconstruction in the country, we have incorporated in our Constitution and therefore with a clean conscience we can say that we have carried out his wishes.

11.165.183

     So far as non-violence is concerned, it is not a thing that can be worked into the laws of the country through a non-violent state. It is an attitude and an approach, a direction and not a destination. It is an attempt, not an attainment. Therefore, so long as we are working towards the direction of non-violence, so long our labours are bound to bear fruit. The only example I can cite on this point is the great achievement of our Prime Minister in his recent tour of America where he won laurels as the key man of the age and possibly as the first Prime Minister of a World-State. He has been able to impress the westerners with this philosophy of ours. There is no doubt that we are saturated and surcharged with the spirit of non-violence, no matter if we still employ the police on the one hand and the military on the other, or even if we be prepared to wage wars in anticipation of wars in which we may be involved.

11.165.184

     When all is said and done, we must realize how much we owe to the half a dozen men that have fashioned this constitution and given it a shape and form. Our friend, Dr. Ambedkar, has gone away, else I should have liked to tell him what a steam-roller intellect he brought to bear upon this magnificent and tremendous task : irresistible, indomitable, unconquerable levelling down tall palms and short poppies : whatever he felt to be right he stood by, regardless of consequences.

11.165.185

     Then there was Sir Alladi, with his oceanic depths of learning, and a whole knowledge of the Constitutional Law of the world on his finger tips. He has made great contributions towards the drawing up of this Constitution. He only has to perfect it all by writing a commentary upon it. That was the latest request of Mr. Santhanam to him and I hope he will fulfil it.

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     Then we have Mr. Gopalaswami Ayyangar copy as a maiden and unobtrusive, but rising to the full heights of the necessities of the occasion, combining always the real with the ideal, and bringing a soft and kindly judgment on to a severe issue.

11.165.187

     Next you have Mr. Munshi, the like of whom we cannot see for his resiliency and receptivity; his wide and varied knowledge, his sharp intellect and his ready resourcefulness have been a tremendous aid to us.

11.165.188

     [[Mr. Madhava Rao is not here now. He was a Diwan of Mysore. He had laboured hard in our Committee. He had vast experience from that of an Assistant Commissioner, Mysore, when I was still in my medical studies, until he became Diwan. He too has done his good bit in this work.

11.165.189

     Then there is a man, who is almost unnoticed, and whose name has not been mentioned by any of my friends, to whom I would like to refer, the sweet and subdued Sa'adulla, who has brought a rich experience to bear upon the deliberations of this House.

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     Finally, comes the slim, tall man, who sits opposite to me, with his ready and rapier thrusts of repartee and rejoinder, whose (sharp-pointed) intellect always punctures or lacerates the opposition. But he is always able to cover up the injury with his plastic surgery and recuperative powers : and that is Mr. T. T. Krishnamachari.

11.165.191

     We have all had the help of these people, but, Sir, the work of all these friends would have been of no use but for the sweetness, the gentleness, with which you turned towards a person when you wanted him to stop in his further speaking : the patience with which you waited in order to catch his eye, - not he to catch your eye, - and the very gentle manner in which you cast the hint that he should now wind up; and when some of us were rebellious, disorderly and chaotic, you simply smiled in order to choke that attitude.

11.165.192

     It is a great thing I tell you that we have achieved. It is not right to under-estimate what we have achieved. Much has been done behind the curtains and but for the discipline and drilling of the majority party in this House, these deliberations would not have come to this happy end.

11.165.193

     I thank you all for the great task that you have achieved and I congratulate you on it.