Subject to the other provisions of this Part, trade, commerce and intercourse throughout the territory of India shall be free.

Debate Summary


Draft Article 274A (Article 301, Constitution of India 1950) was not included in the Draft Constitution 1948. The discussion on this Draft Article was held over on 15 June 1949 and eventually discussed on 8 September 1949. The Drafting Committee Chairman proposed to add a new Part XA to the Constitution comprising Draft Article 274A. Draft Article 274A is the first among a series of Articles that discussed trade, commerce and intercourse within the territory of India. It provided that trade, commerce and intercourse throughout India would be free, subject to other provisions in Part XA. 


The Drafting Committee Chairman introduced this new part to bring together various provisions on trade and commerce, that were scattered across the Draft Constitution, in one place. 


A Member proposed to amend Draft Article 274A to state that the freedom to engage in trade, commerce and intercourse throughout India should be subject to the provisions laid down in the Constitution instead of just Part XA. The Assembly rejected this amendment. 


Some Members were concerned that the right to conduct trade and commerce freely throughout India initially guaranteed under Draft Article 16 as a justiciable fundamental right was being diluted in Draft Article 274A - there were more restrictions


A few other Members supported the inclusion of Part XA to ensure that all provisions on trade and commerce were codified in one place. 


After substantial debate, Draft Article 274A was adopted on 8 September 1949.