This article and articles 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 60, 324, 366, 367, 379, 380, 388, 391, 392 and 393 shall come into force at once, and the remaining provisions of this Constitution shall come into force on the twenty-sixth day of January, 1950, which day is referred to in this Constitution as the commencement of this Constitution.
Draft Article 314, Draft Constitution of India 1948
314. This Constitution shall come into force on .................
Draft Article 314 was discussed in the Constituent Assembly on 17 October 1949. It indicated the exact date on which the Constitution of India would come into force. When it was introduced in the Assembly though, the date was left blank – presumably for the Assembly to settle.
A Drafting Committee Member moved an amendment proposing that the Constitution come into force on 26 January 1950. It appears that 26 January 1950 was chosen to mark the Declaration of Purna Swaraj on 26 January 1930 – when Indians for the very first time demanded ‘complete independence’ from British rule. A few provisions concerning citizenship and the arrangements for governance during the transition period however, including Draft Article 314, would come into force immediately.
One member wanted Draft Article 1 and the Preamble to be added to those Articles that would come into effect immediately. It didn’t make sense for other provisions to come into effect, without these two provisions. A Drafting Committee member responded that it made sense for the Preamble and Article 1 to come into effect along with the Constitution as a whole.
One Member pointed out that Draft Article 311 was a provision coming into force immediately. This provision stated that those Constituent Assembly Members who were elected to the State Legislature would have to give up their Constituent Assembly seats from the date the Constitution commenced. As this Draft Article would come into effect at once, would these members leave their seats vacant immediately, asked the member. A Drafting Committee Member clarified that this would not be the case – all Constituent Assembly Members would remain members of the Assembly until 26 January 1950.
Draft Article 314 was adopted by the Assembly on 17 October 1949 and it was decided that the Constitution would come into effect on 26 January 1950.