Book

Working a Democratic Constitution

Granville Austin

Published in print July 2003 | ISBN: 9780195656107
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199080397 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195656107.001.0001
Working a Democratic Constitution

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This is a history of the working of the Indian Constitution from 1950 to 1985, written for Indians and non-Indians — who are interested in India and in its constitutional experience. Because the Constitution is used as benchmark and measuring stick for citizens and officials touching lives in many ways, learning of its working truly opens a window into India. This book talks about politics, economics, conditions, and culture; about politicians, civil servants, lawyers, judges, and journalists. It is about success and failure, hope and despair, power, sacrifice, and motivations, both selfish and grand. It is about those who acted upon the Constitution, how and why they did so, and about those the Constitution acted upon, or neglected. The book begins with the Constitution's inauguration in January 1950 and ends with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's passing, late in 1984. It also looks at the, post 1985 developments, such as the Supreme Court's 1993 decision on the appointment and transfer of judges, and ‘judicial activism’ during the 1990s; the implementation in 1990 of the Mandal Commission report on special consideration for the Other Backward Classes; and the failure in 1992 to use central government forces to protect the Babri mosque at Ayodhya.

Keywords: Indian Constitution; Indira Gandhi; judicial activism; Other Backward Classes; Babri Mosque; Mandal Commission

Book.  792 pages. 

Subjects: Constitutional and Administrative Law

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Table of Contents

Introduction in Working a Democratic Constitution

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Prologue in Working a Democratic Constitution

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Settling into Harness in Working a Democratic Constitution

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Free Speech, Liberty, and Public Order in Working a Democratic Constitution

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The Social Revolution and the First Amendment in Working a Democratic Constitution

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The Judiciary: ‘Quite Untouchable’ in Working a Democratic Constitution

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Making and Preserving a Nation in Working a Democratic Constitution

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Indira Gandhi: In Context and in Power in Working a Democratic Constitution

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The Golak Nath Inheritance in Working a Democratic Constitution

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