Paper II: Constitutional Government and Democracy in India is an essential course for anyone interested in understanding the political and constitutional foundations of modern India. Offered at Delhi University, this course provides a comprehensive overview of the history and principles of constitutional government and democracy in India, including the development of India’s constitutional system and its key features, as well as the role of democracy in shaping India’s political and social structures.
Throughout this course, students will examine a range of topics related to constitutional government and democracy in India, including the role of the judiciary, the powers and responsibilities of the various branches of government, and the rights and obligations of citizens. They will also learn about the challenges and controversies that have arisen in the implementation of India’s constitutional system, and will have the opportunity to engage with and analyze contemporary issues related to these topics.
In addition to lectures and discussions, students will also have access to a set of comprehensive Delhi University notes that summarize and highlight the key points covered in the course. These notes serve as an important resource for students as they study and review the material, and can be used as a reference when preparing for exams or writing papers.
Overall, Paper II: Constitutional Government and Democracy in India is a valuable course for anyone interested in understanding the political and constitutional foundations of modern India, and the Delhi University notes provide a useful resource for students as they study and review the material.
This course acquaints students with the constitutional design of state structures and institutions, and their actual working over time. The Indian Constitution accommodates conflicting impulses (of liberty and justice, territorial decentralization and a strong union, for instance) within itself. The course traces the embodiment of some of these conflicts in constitutional provisions, and shows how these have played out in political practice. It further encourages a study of state institutions in their mutual interaction, and in interaction with the larger extra-constitutional environment.
I. The Constituent Assembly and the Constitution
A. Philosophy of the Constitution, the Preamble, and Features of the Constitution
B. Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles
II. Organs of Government
A. The Legislature: Parliament
B. The Executive: President and Prime Minister
C. The Judiciary: Supreme Court
III. Federalism and Decentralization
A. Federalism: Division of Powers, Emergency Provisions, Fifth and Sixth Schedules
B. Panchayati Raj and Municipalities
C. Three Generations of Rights
D. Rights and Obligations
Important Issue: Right of the girl child
Section B: Major Debates
I. Why should we obey the state? Issues of political obligation and civil disobedience.
II. Are human rights universal? Issue of cultural relativism.
III. How do we accommodate diversity in plural society? Issues of multiculturalism and toleration.