NEW DELHI: India has a history of amending its Constitution so often that it becomes hard to remember its original intent in the Indian context. Since 1950, India has amended the Constitution 103 times. The Constitution was framed in a way to ensure that the Parliament does not have the power to override it.But major amendments in the Constitution have been brought in by the respective governments only when they were in majority. Former prime minister Indira Gandhi introduced the words secular and socialist in the Constitution during the Emergency.
The basic structure doctrine already contained the principles of secularism and socialism. Indira Gandhi wanted to assert parliamentary supremacy over the judiciary and felt it necessary to amend the Constitution to make those two ideas part of the Constitution’s preamble. But Indira Gandhi had to face its consequences in the elections that followed which led to the first-ever downfall of the Congress.
Almost on similar lines, the Constitution witnessed the J&K Reorganisation Bill, 2019, introduced by Union Home Minister Amit Shah, and passed the same in Rajya Sabha on Monday. The repercussions of the move will be widespread and could continue to reverberate for some time to come.