(1) India, that is Bharat, shall be a Union of States.
(2) The States and the territories thereof shall be as specified in the First Schedule.
(3) The territory of India shall comprise —
(a) the territories of the States;
(b) the Union territories specified in the First Schedule; and
(c) such other territories as may be acquired.
Article 1 of the Constitution of India (Draft Article 1) defines the name and territory of India.
The Assembly debated this on 15, 16, 17 November 1948 and 17, 18 September 1949.
A member of the Drafting Committee clarified the object of using the ‘Union of States’: it was to make it explicit that India was a federation of states. This federation is an indestructible unit and is not a result of an agreement between states.
Another member proposed to add ‘Secular, Federal, Socialist’ to ‘Union of States’. He argued that, as the Preamble of the Constitution was not yet adopted, Draft Article 1 should embody ‘aspirations’ that the Constitution seeks to achieve. The Chairman of the Drafting Committee opposed this amendment. He noted that the social and economic policy decisions are to be taken by elected parliamentarians. To encode the form of society would destroy ‘democracy altogether’. He further pointed out several Directive Principles of the State Policy including the right to livelihood, redistribution of material resources and equal pay for equal work are socialistic. There was no need to include ‘Socialist’ in Draft Article 1.
Some members suggested alternative names to India. One wanted ‘Bharat’ or ‘Hind’ to gain more prominence and to be placed before ‘India’. Another suggested ‘Union of Indian Socialistic republics U. I. S. R.’ on the lines of U. S. S. R.
When all the proposals were put to vote, they were negatived. The Assembly adopted Draft Article 1 on 18 September 1949.