(1)The State shall strive to promote the welfare of the people by securing and protecting as effectively as it may a social order in which justice, social, economic and political, shall inform all the institutions of the national life.

 

(2) The State shall, in particular, strive to minimise the inequalities in income, and endeavour to eliminate inequalities in status, facilities and opportunities, not only amongst individuals but also amongst groups of people residing in different areas or engaged in different vocations.

Debate Summary

Article 30, Draft Constitution of India 1948

The State shall strive to promote the welfare of the people by securing and protecting as effectively as it may a social order in which justice, social, economic and political, shall inform all the institutions of the national life.

Draft Article 30 was debated in the Constituent Assembly on 19 November 1948. It directed the State to engage in social transformation to promote the welfare of Indians.

 A member wanted to replace the Draft Article with a provision that directed the State to establish a socialist order and take over, among other things, the ownership of important sectors of the economy. It was argued that prevailing capitalist system was oppressive, and the only way to secure the welfare of the people was to organise India on socialist lines and this required ‘socialist democracy’ to be explicitly mentioned in the constitutional text.

Another member, while admitting the importance of the article, was concerned about its implementation. He invoked the ‘Instrument of Instructions’ of the Government of India Act 1935 – a set of provisions that were similar to the Directive Principles of State Policy (DPSPs) in that they were directives to certain constitutional authorities. He argued that the 1935 Act had some provisions to ensure their implementation. The Indian Constitution, on the other hand, had no such provisions; He wanted a ‘superior authority’ could oversee the implementation and act against the transgression of DPSPs.  

It was clarified that the Constitution, in addition to establishing political democracy, also aimed to strive for economic democracy. However, there were many ways that economic democracy could be achieved – socialism, communism – and the Constitution would not take a stand on which path to adopt.

The issue of implementation was not responded to here but was done in a previous debate (See Article 37 debate summary)

The Assembly adopted the Draft Article with no amendments.