Critics have tried to make a great deal out of thisbulkiness of our Constitution. But we must not forget thatours is a big country of 330 millions and we are making aConstitution for almost one fifth of humanity. There forethere should be no wonder that our Constitution is bulky.Not only are we making a Constitution for a number of peoplefor whom so far no other country has made any Constitutionbut our problems are varied and are different. Also, at thesame time we have tired to give in the constitution of oursa modus operatus whereby we have been able to set at naughtthe rigours of federalism and the vagaries of unitary formof Government. In an attempt to bring about that compromisebetween federalism and unitary from of Government, we hadnaturally to take recourse to certain Articles which areresponsible for increasing the bulk of our Constitution.
As I said, Sir, our is a country which has got its ownproblems. In no country in the world are there what we callthe principalities - the States - and there should be nowonder that in order to bring all these various factors inline with the present day democratic principles, thedraftsmen of our Constitution could not compress into a fewArticles all that they wanted to do. Therefore the chargethat has been levelled against our Constitution that it isbulky seems to me to be frivolous.
The second charge is that we have borrowed almostverbatim from the various constitutions and that we have notcared to glance at the Constitution of the U.S.S.R. Now, sof ar as this particular charge is concerned, I would like todraw the attention of the Honourable House to some verypatent factual and fundamental differences that existbetween our country and the U.S.S.R. Let us not forget thatthe Russian Constitution came into existence after fulleighteen years of Government by a single party, theCommunist Party of the U.S.S.R. For full eighteen years thatparty was in power The Octo ber Revolution of 1917 broughtthat party to power and, till 1935, they did not think ofmaking a Constitution for their country. After eighteenyears, during which period a rigid single-party rule wasthere, they thought of giving a constitution to Russia. Ourconditions are far different from the conditions prevailingin Russia. Naturally, if we could not borrow any provisionfrom the Russian Constitution which may appear on the faceof it desirable, we must not forget that we did not borrowon purpose. It is said that the Russian Constitution givesthe fullest scope to the minorities, butwe forget that during the eighteen years when that rigidparty known as the Communist Party of Russia was in power inwhat is called the Democratic Republics of Russia, it hadestablished such a strong hold upon the various Republicsthat constitute the U.S.S.R., that in spite of the fact thatthe Constitution gave them power to break off theirconnection with the Central Government, in the very natureof things it is impossible for them even to think of doingso. The Republics of Georgia, Ukraine, etc. and some of theother Central Asian republics, long before a Constitutionwas given to them, were in the grip of that well-knit, well-organised Communist Party of the U.S.S.R. Therefore, to turnround and say that we have not taken this or that greatprinciple of the Russian Constitution and embodied it in ourown Constitution is to ignore the facts as they exist inRussia and as they exist in our own country.
Sir, if we look at the political development that hastaken shape in our own country, we will find that it is ondemocratic principles that our party, the Congress PoliticalParty, has developed. The Russian Communist Party hasdeveloped on a totally different basis and that basis is thebasis of revolutionary totalitarianism. Therefore thosefriends who came to the rostrum and spoke very well of theRussian Constitution and twitted us for not having borrowedvarious clauses from the Russian Constitution, may be toldthat their criticism is absolutely baseless. While
makingthat criticism they have not cared to look at the situationin our own country.
Then again, let us not forget that there is a vitaldifference between the principles, the aims and objects of the Russian polity and the principles and the aims andobjects of the polity which we want to develop in our owncountry.
Sir, in Russia, the individual as such has got preciouslittle value. It is the State, the Society and the Party forwhich the individual should exist. But here, under theinspiring leadership of Mahatma Gandhi we have learnt tolook at things in a little different way. We considerindividuals to be the basis of society and party and State.This insistance upon the individual makes our situation fardifferent from the situation that prevails in Russia. Forall these reasons if our Constitution makers could notborrow from the Russian Constitution, then I can say thatthey did so on purpose and that it was proper that theyshould have looked to the democratic countries forinspiration rather than to Russia which, though apparently ademocratic State, is yet a Government on a rigid singleparty basis.
The third charge which has been laid at the door of ourConstitution makers is that this Constitution has got a verypowerful centrifugal tendency and that the little provincialautonomy which seems to have been given under the Constitution is likely to be taken away in the course ofworking this constitution and that all power is likely tocentre in the Union State. But why should we forget that we,our country, we all, have been chronic patients of what Imay call centrifugalities ? This centrifugal tendency is atendency to fly away from the Centre. This tendency of thevarious limbs to break off from the body politic is ahistorical tendency. We should not ignore it.
Today we are sitting here to weld the Nation into astrong well-knit, well organised society. If ourConstitution-makers do not take care to guard against thatchronic illness from which our country has been sufferingfor centuries, then we are likely to come to grief.Therefore I say that these friends and critics, who thinkthat the Centre which has been given certain powers to meetcertain emergencies is likely to abuse those powers, aretrying to cry 'wolf' 'wolf' before actually the wolf comesto their doors.
There is no doubt that the Constitution does notcontain any clause about village panchayats. A good deal ofcriticism has been hurled at it for that reason, but may Ipoint out that the Constitution in no way rules out thedevelopment of the village panchayats? The Constitution doesnot put any obstruction whatsoever in the path of thedevelopment of those units of local self-government whichwill enjoy power for managing their own affairs, andtherefore that criticism also seems to me to be without anyfoundation.
One word more, Sir, and I have done. I was ratherpained to see that my esteemed friend, Mr. T. T.Krishnamachari, and my respected elder, Pandit Lakshmi KantaMaitra, have taken our efforts, in the direction of tryingto give a national language, with suspicion and even with alittle sense of exasperation. I tender to my friend, Mr. T.T. Krishnamachari, a thousand apologies if that impressionhas been created. May I tell the House that those of us whofeel that there should be a national language, that thereshould be a common medium by which we may be in a positionultimately to exchange our ideas and to express ourselves - this lingua Indica should be Hindi in our opinion - thatcertainly does not mean that we wish to tread upon the toesof any friends of ours. No provincial language can come togrief if those friends co-operate with us in evolving anational language. In trying to give a common language tothe nation, our efforts are not with a view to exasperatingany friends. We want sympathisers from every quarter. Wewant the whole group from the Dakshina to come to our rescueand to help us in our efforts to give a national language tothis ancient land of ours. Thanks.
Pandit Thakur Dass Bhargava (East Punjab: General):(Began in Hindustani).
Nagappa (Madras: General): Sir, may I requestthat those of the members who can express themselves inEnglish should speak in English?
Pandit Thakur Dass Bhargava: Since my friends insistthat I should speak in English, I bow to their wishes. It istrue that I am able to express myself with greater ease inHindi but at the same time I do wish that I should beunderstood by all the members of the House.
Sir, I wish to join in the chorus of praise which hasbeen showered in this House on the Drafting Committee, but Icannot do so without reservation. When I bear in mind thecomplaints made by some friends here, I do feel that theDrafting Committee has not done what we expected it to do.Some of the members were absent, some did not join, some didnot fully apply their minds. In regard to the financialprovisions, what do we find? They have shirked the questionand have not given us any solution whatsoever with regard tosome other questions also. The real soul of India is notrepresented by this Constitution, and the autonomy of thevillages is not fully delineated here and this camera(holding out the Draft Constitution) cannot give a truepicture of what many people would like India to be. TheDrafting Committee had not the mind of Gandhiji, had not themind of those who think that India's teeming millions shouldbe reflected through this camera. All the same, Sir, Icannot withhold my need of praise for the labour, theindustry and the ability with which Dr. Ambedkar has dealtwith this Constitution. I congratulate him on the speechthat he made without necessarily concurring with him in allthe sentiments that he expressed before this House.
I think, Sir, that the soul of this Constitution iscontained in the Preambly and I am glad to express my senseof gratitude to Dr. Ambedkar for having added the word'fraternity' to the Preamble. Now, Sir, I want to apply thetouch-stone of this Preamble to the entire Constitution. IfJustice, Liberty, Equality and Fraternity are to be found inthis Constitution, if we can get this ideal through thisConstitution, I maintain that the Constitution is good. Inso far as these four things which are contained in thePreamble are wanting, then I am bound to say that the Constitution is wanting, and from this angle I want to judgethe Constitution. I know that time is very limited and Icannot touch upon everything. I wish to speak about onlythree or four subjects.
In the first place, I would like to draw the attentionof the House to Part II-Citizenship. There are about 60lakhs of people or more who have come from Western Pakistan,Sind, Baluchistan and East Bengal. These people are notaliens. If technically they are regarded as aliens, I domaintain that it is a sin to do so, because this situationhas been brought about by the Government who agreed topartition. Therefore to make a law that each one of themshould go before a District Magistrate within one month anddeclare that he or she is a citizen of India is rather hard.In practice, I know it will be impossible as most of these60 lakhs of people are illiterate and do not know anythingabout this provision in the Constitution. If any suchilliterate man fails to register himself as a citizen underthis article, what would happen to him? Therefore I maintainthat this is a very serious flaw in Part II. We ought to seethat all these persons who have come from Pakistan onaccount of this Government agreeing to partitionautomatically become citizens of India without any effort ontheir part. If they want to secure themselves by making adeclaration, I have no objection, but in case they fail tocomply with this provision, I maintain that we should have aprovision that mere permanent residence entitles them tofull citizenship rights. To insist that they can only becomecitizens after they have gone to a District Magistrate andmade a declaration that they want to be citizens of Indiais, in my opinion, an act of tyranny on them.
I therefore submit that this clause should be amendedin such a way that those 60 lakhs of people may becomecitizens of India without any special effort
on their part.
Secondly, I beg to submit that in regard to thequestion of minorities, as you know, Sir, I have been takingthe very same position which you have been taking in theMinority Committee and I must say that you yourself havebeen a sort of beacon light to me and to others who thoughtlike you. In regard to this question, I beg to submit thatunder the third clause of the Preamble equality of statusand of liberty will be given to all.
In regard to the majority community - Sir, there will beeither single constituencies or plural constituencies. Inregard to single constituencies my submission is that if amember of a minority community will stand for thoseconstituencies the members of the majority community willnot be allowed to stand. This means that the electoral rightof the member of the majority community will not be equal tothe electoral right of the minority community. Again if theyhad plural constituencies even then I maintain, it is veryhumiliating for any person to stand and secure the largestnumber of votes and then to be told that another person of aminority community will represent that constituency and nothe who secured the largest number of votes. It is extremelyhumiliating and I want that in regard to the electoral rightthere should be perfect equality among the members of theminority community and the majority community.
Sir, I have been a worker all my life for the welfareof the minority community people. For the last 35 years Ihave been a worker and all those who belong to minoritycommunities know that I have never made a speech on theoccasion of budget when I have not submitted to this Housethat in regard to posts, lands, money, property, the membersof the Scheduled castes should be given preference andpriority and I do maintain it is necessary to pass suchmeasures as will level up their economic and socialequality.
I am in favour of Clauses 299 and 300 which providesufficient safeguards for them, but in regard to this aspectof reservation of seats, I must submit that I am deadopposed to it. When weightage was sought to be given to theAnglo-Indians we made an effort to see that this weightagequestion is not introduced into our Constitution and wesucceeded ultimately and by nomination any deficiency in thenumber of Anglo-Indians was sought to be made up and we havegot section 293 and other sections where nomination has beenimpressed upon to make up deficiencies, if any. Now, Sir, Imaintain that in regard to Muhammadans and Sikhs andChristians no occasion for reservation arises at all and theentire population is almost homogeneous, so far as wealth,social influence and status and other things are concerned.In fact some of these communities are perhaps better offthan the majority community. In regard to Harijans, membersof the Scheduled castes it may be said that in wealth,social influence and social status they are inferior, butall the same I want that their position may be levelled upin ways other than by reservation of seats. In regard tothis right also I am agreeable that if there is anydeficiency in any number according to section 67, then wewill have recourse to nomination and by nomination thenumber may be made up if this House thinks that their rightshould be secured in this respect. There is no occasion forhaving reservations at all but if any are necessary thismethod of reservation is very humiliating to the majoritycommunity and will be very harmful to the minoritycommunity. Yesterday Mr. Karimuddin gave very good reasonsin the House. In the Legislative Assembly Sardar GurmukhSingh on behalf of the Sikhs said that he did not wantreservations. I know that since August 1947 the situationhas changed and my Muslim friends and my Sikh friends arecoming round to the view that the reservations are notuseful for them. I wish that many of them expressed theirminds. In regard to reservations therefore my position is that if reservations are thought to be necessary by thisHouse, the reservation should be made only by nomination. Weknow how the Bureaucracy used this power of nomination, butin
regard to a President who will be elected by the people.I do not think that such a misunderstanding or such asituation can arise. In regard to reservations the questionof equality of status comes in the way and at the same timesuch a system tends to perpetuate the psychology ofseparation and the majority community is bound to considerthat the reservation being there they are not bound to doanything further and the word fraternity which has beenadded in the last sentence by Dr. Ambedkar will lose itssignificance. If we want to abolish the sense of separation,it is necessary that we should not encourage the sense ofseparation by our own act. I therefore submit, Sir, that inregard to reservation I wish the House accepted theproposition which I am advocating from the very day in whichI entered this House.
Some criticism has been made in this House that thisConstitution is more political than social and economic innature. Prof. K. T. Shah gave vent to his feeling yesterdayand I for one respect every word of what he said, but may Ihumbly submit that in this Constitution we have got sections32, 33, 38 which deal with the social and economic aspect?Now, Sir, I do not want that we should have a Constitutionwhich we may not be able to work; if this Constitution saidthat the State shall provide full employment and amenitiesand these rights given in the directive principles were alsojusticiable, we shall be stultifying ourselves and promisingto do what we are unable to do at present as I do not thinkthat the present Government of India is able to do what theother States in Europe can do. This Constitution verymodestly says that we shall endeavour to the best of ourability to do what we claim to do. These directiveprinciples have been spoken of disparagingly by some of theMembers. I beg to submit that I regard these directiveprinciples to be essence of this Constitution. They give usa target, they place before us our aim and we shall do allthat we can to have this aim satisfied. In regard to this,sections 32, 33and some other sections provide social and economic basisfor advancement. In regard to section 38 it says that thestandard of living shall be raised. But the question arises.How shall the standard of living be raised?
In India a poor country, where the average earning of aman is only five shillings a week, compared to othercountries of the world where the earnings are at leasttwenty times as much, we do not know how to face thisquestion. If we go to the villages, even drinking water isnot easily available. In regard to clothing, you know betterthan I can describe. In regard to these matters, if we wantreally to place some sort of an obligation on theGovernment, let us say clearly that the Government shallhave, as soon as it gets into full power, to undertake theexecution of irrigation and hydro-electric projects byharnessing the rivers, by the construction of dams, andadopt other means of increasing the production of food andfodder. Similarly, we can say certainly that the Governmentshould provide good drinking water in the country. If youwant rivers of milk and honey to flow in India, we shouldalso say that the Government shall preserve, protect andimprove the useful breeds of cattle, and ban the slaughterof useful cattle, particularly milch cows and young calves.I am placing this humble submission before the House. I knowthat the Congress party unanimously accepted thisproposition when it was put to the House by me at the timeof their meeting. But, it was my misfortune that this thingcould not be debated in this House; and when the occasioncame, the House was adjourned. I submit that there is a verygreat demand in this country that some steps should be takento see that people get good food, good drinking water andmilk. I have used the words "useful breeds of cattle anduseful cattle". I may say every Government in India, eventhe Muslim Kings, the Government of Afghanistan, and evennow Burma, have settled this thing by law for all time. InBurma, today, which has got no religion like ours, who donot regard the cow as
sacred, they have enacted thatslaughter of cows shall be banned. I do not want that. WhatI want is that the slaughter of useful cattle shall bebanned. That is my humble submission to this House and Ithink nobody will disagree. This would, at the same time,give satisfaction to crores of people who regard thisquestion from a different motive, though I do not regard itfrom that motive.
I have to make one other submission to the House and itis this. We have heard too much about the villagepanchayats. How these village panchayats will work I do notknow. We have got a conception and that conception we try toput into practice. I wish to submit to this House for theirvery serious consideration that when the constituencies cometo be formed under the new Constitution, they should maketerritorial constituencies; they should not makeconstituencies of cities alone and they should not makeconstituencies of villages alone. They should evolve asystem by which the differentiation between the rural andurban people, between those who have too much and who havetoo little may for all time be removed, so that we mayevolve one nation. In my visit to England just now, I foundwhen an application goes to the Government for starting anew factory, they say, "go to the villages, we shall notallow any more factories in London". I want all thefactories should be so established in India that for thevillages or for groups of villages some sort of employmentmay be provided. The industries should be decentralised asmuch as the administration should be decentralised. Thedisparity between the mode of living of the rural people andthe urban people must be abolished if we want to evolve onenation. At the present time, what do we find? The urbanpeople and the rural people are so much apart from eachother in their modes of living and outlook on life. To gonear the villages is very difficult. The urban people do notlike to go to the villages. I know the Congress has gone tothe villagesall honour to the Congress. But, there are a good many inthe Congress also who do not wish to go to the villages;they cannot go because their mode of living is different.You will have to evolve such constituencies in which thecities and villages come in without any distinction; ifthere is a constituency for a lakhs of the population, thecities and villages should be included in one constituency.Some of the village people themselves may not like the urbanpeople coming in, and will regard this proposition as acontrivance for usurpation of their preserve but in makingthis proposal I have the best interests of the country as awhole before myself. I wish that the amenities of life maybe the same everywhere in city as well as in village and infuture all efforts be concentrated financially andpolitically to bring the village into line with the city. Ihope if you will ponder over this question, you will agreethat it is essential to work this constitution in such amanner and in such a spirit as will conduce to better lifeand better happiness of the nationals of this country.
Shri H. V. Kamath (C. P. and Berar: General): On apoint of order, Sir, may I ask whether it is fair to thisHouse that Dr. Ambedkar who has moved this motion and who isexpected to reply, to the debate should remain absent fromthe House? Is anybody deputising for him here ?
Mr. Vice-President: Yes.
Shri Algu Rai Shastri (United Provinces: General):*[Mr. President, Sir, the point raised by Shri Kamath justnow appears to be quite sound because so long as the memberin charge does not benefit from the speeches that are beingdelivered and does not pay attention to whatever is beingsaid in the House, it is futile to have a discussion.Therefore, I request that so long as he is unable to bepresent here, the discussion should be postponed. However,if he has authorised some one else to note down whatever issaid here and then to help him, there would be no harm done.Otherwise the whole discussion that is being held appears to be a mere waste of breath and will not be of any use inamending the Constitution.
therefore, give a clear ruling that ifthere is to be a discussion, the member in charge, who ispiloting the Draft, should be present here or somerepresentative of his should be here. So long as this is notarranged, the discussion should be postponed.]
Shri Satyanarayan Sinha (Bihar: General): Mr. Saadullawho was in the Drafting Committee is here and he representsDr. Ambedkar.
Mr. Vice-President: There are members of the Drafting Committee here who are deputising for the Honourable Dr.Ambedkar. I think that our requirements are fairly met. Ihope this will satisfy the House.
Shri Lala Raj Kanwar (Orissa States): Sir, as a back-bencher and as one who has generally been a silent Member ofthis House, I crave your indulgence and the indulgence ofthis august Assembly to make a few observations for whatthey are worth. My observations, if I may say so, will beconfined to only one aspect, albeit a very important aspect,of the problem that we are called upon to tackle, namely thequestion of national language.
Mr. Vice-President: It is for you to consider whether adetailed examination of that is necessary now.
Shri Lala Raj Kanwar: I am not going into the details;I shall confine myself to general observations. TheConstitution is bound to reflect the will of the people andthe voice of the people and I believe, therefore, the voiceof God, as the Latin saying goes, vox populi, vox Dei. Itmeans that it is not a question of the language of the Constitution, but the language of the nation and the countryat large. Sir, in the Upanishads, which are the
*  Translation of Hindustani speech.
repository of concentrated wisdom and divine knowledge, andabout which the great German Philosopher Schopenhauer saidthat "in the whole world there is no study so elevating asthat of the Upanishads, which has been the solace of my lifeand which will be the solace of my death", it is written:
As one thinks from the mind, so he speaks from themouth;
as one speaks from the mouth, so he acts;
as one acts, so he becomes. That is, the deeds proclaimthe man.
Language is the outward expression of our innermostthoughts and a common national language is a prime necessityas it makes for unity and cohesion in a manner in which noother single factor does. As in the case of redistributionof provincial boundaries, there is an outcry in favour ofsome of the provincial languages struggling for supremacy.This is only natural but there should be no antagonismbetween one language and another. Whether the provincesshould be formed on linguistic basis or some other basis orshould be left intact has nothing to with the question ofnational language - the lingua franca of the country. Thatthe Government of the day can give a great lead in thismatter goes without saying. Witness the case of Englishwhich under the domination of our late foreign masterspractically became the lingua franca throughout the lengthand breadth of this vast country. But in order to be thenational language it should not only be the language of theintelligentsia but of the common people. It should be alanguage which should be spoken and understood by allclasses of people and by the majority of them. Consideringthe huge population of India we find that of the provinciallanguages such as Bengali, Marathi, Gujarati, Punjabi,Telugu or Oriya, none of them is spoken or understood by thegreat majority of the people of India and the only languagethat can lay claim to a great extent to this position isHindi which is spoken not only in Upper India but in C. P.,Rajputana, Bihar and various other tracts. But the spokenHindi is not the Sanskritised Hindi of Scholars and theintelligentsia - for after all what is their percentage ascompared to the huge population of the country - but a Hindifull of short, sweet and simple words, the pure, chaste andunadulterated Hindi spoken by the great majority of thepeople and which the uneducated people, the womenfolk andthe children make full use of and speak freely and frankly.Although Sanskrit is the mother of most of the
Indianlanguages - the languages not only of India but also of theWorld - and although it is the language par excellence inwhich our Vedas, Upanishads, Shastras, the Ramayan andMahabharat and the Immortal Gita are written and although inthe words of Sir William Jones, the great Orientalist,"Sanskrit is more perfect than Greek, more copious thanLatin and sweeter than Italian", still it is not thelanguage of the common people and so it is not desirablethat we should draw upon it for our daily requirements inHindi. Moreover Sanskrit has been a dead language forseveral centuries like Latin, Greek and Hebrew, and in spiteof the marvels of the marvellous and inimitable Ashtadhyayiof Panini, the greatest Grammarian of the world, Sanskrit ismost difficult to learn. The test of a national languageshould be its simplicity, and that it should be easilyunderstood by everybody in the country. Now nobody can denythat the Sanskrit Alphabet is the most perfect andscientific in the World and it is also very natural and notunlike the alphabets of other languages. For example thevery first letter of its alphabet is. The mouthautomatically opens when you have to utter this and thesound represented by it is the very first sound which onehears when the mouth is opened. Similarly when the lastletter of the Sanskrit alphabet, that is m is uttered themouth is automatically shut, which means that it is rightlythe last letter of the alphabet, although I do not forgetthat in a sense is not the last letter of the Devanagrialphabet because it is followed by other letters like butthey are variations of other letters. For instance is avariation of is a variation of is a variation of is avariation of. On account of the perfection of the Sanskritalphabet, Hindi which is spoken by the great majority of thepeople in this country, should when reduced in writing, bewritten in Devanagri script (Cheers). Sometime ago a movewas made to evolve what is known as basic English. If somesuch steps could be taken with regard to Hindi, it would bemuch easier for other people who do not at present speakHindi or write Hindi to learn it in the minimum of time. Inview of the position hitherto and at present occupied byUrdu written in the Persian script and in view of the factthat it is the language generally used by our Muslimbrethren who number nearly 3 1/2 or 4 crores in this countryand who are scattered throughout the length and breadth ofthis country, and in view of its intrinsic merit that itsscript is a sort of shorthand, I think it is desirable thatwe should pay some attention to Urdu also but of course itcan never be and there is no reason why, it should be theprimary language of the Nation. The national and officiallanguage should of course be Hindi written in the Devanagriscript but the second language should in my opinion be Urdubecause it is a sort of shorthand and takes much lesser timeto write and occupies much lesser space than otherlanguages. For example take the word 'Muntazim' which inUrdu is written as if it were one compound letter, but ifyou write in Hindi in Devnagri script or Roman English itwill consist of 7 or 8 distinct letters. Similar instancesare 'Muntazir, Muntashir, Muntakhib' and hundreds of othersimilar combinations of letters which at present formunitary words. So I think that in view of the fact that Urduis at present spoken by an appreciable number of people inthis country and especially in big cities like Delhi, Agra,Lucknow and other places, and the countryside round aboutDelhi, and other large centres of population in NorthernIndia and it possesses certain advantages in asmuchas it isa sort of shorthand, I submit that we should treat it as thesecond language of the country. Moreover, if we adopt it asa second language, it will be a gesture of good-will towardsthe Muslim population who, as I have already said, number noless than 3 1/2 to 4 crores. And in a secular State we willdo well to make such a gesture. However much we may feel theconsequences of the partition and the holocaust thatfollowed in its wake we should take a realistic view
ofthings, for after all we cannot build on anger, vengeance orretribution. Although I happen to represent a distant partof India at the moment, namely the Orissa States, I am aPunjabi, and like most Punjabis have suffered grievously ina variety of ways on account of the partition, but thatshould not make me forgetful of our duty towards thecountry. We should also not forget that the Father of theNation during his life-time freely and unreservedlyexpressed himself in favour of Hindustani, and in expressingthis opinion he was never depressed; on the other hand hewas always impressed with the reality of the situation andthe necessity and the correctness of this view.
One other suggestion that I should like to make in allhumility is that in framing our Constitution we shouldinvoke God's blessings as is done by every householder whenhe performs some big ceremony or when some great Yajna hasto be performed. And what greater Yajna could there be thanthis in the new India that is born after so much travail? Itherefore suggest that at the commencement of the Constitution we should say that we invoke God's blessings inthis holy task, and at the end of the Preamble also weshould use some such words as "So help us God". At a time ofgreat trial facing hiscountry Rudyard Kipling devoutly wrote:
Lord God of gods,
Be with us yet,
Lest we forget, Lest we forget.
I trust this suggestion of mine will be considered bythis Honourable House.
Before I resume my seat I should like to add my tributeto the chorus of praise showered on the Honourable the LawMinister, Dr. Ambedkar, Chairman of the Drafting Committee,for the excellent speech made by him while moving for theconsideration of the Draft Constitution. For lucidity andclarity of exposition and expression it could hardly besurpassed. Both he and his co-adjutors are entitled to ourbest gratitude for the very strenuous work they have done inpreparing the Draft Constitution. Sir, I thank you forgiving me this opportunity of making my submission.
Shri Yudhisthir Mishra (Orissa States): Mr. Vice-President, Sir, I have been called upon to speak at thisfag-end of the morning session and I shall try to finish itas soon as possible. I want to submit a few points for theconsideration of this Assembly. The first thing is that inthe whole of the Draft Constitution there is no provisionfor the economic independence of the country. So long we hadbeen fighting for the political independence of the country,and times without number, our leaders have said that weshall try to establish in this country such a Constitutionas will provide for the economic independence of thecountry. But I am sorry to say that nothing of the kind hasbeen done. There is no thing for the common people to besecure about their future. There is nothing in this Draft Constitution which provides them full opportunities fortheir growth in the future. The Constitution should firstlyprovide that all the lands, machinery and all other means ofproduction and products thereof will be owned and controlledby the State in the interests of the people.
Secondly, the State should provide for every man andwoman work according to his or her capacity and ability andsupply the people with materials and goods according totheir needs and requirements.
Thirdly, the production of goods should be determinedand regulated according to the needs of the people. TheDraft Constitution does not give any guarantee for thenationalisation of the wealth within a reasonable time; andit does not say anywhere that every man and woman should beprovided with work in this country.
The second submission I would like to make is aboutcivil liberty. The Draft Constitution provides that a personcan be detained without trial in the interests of the state.I do not understand what is meant by " in the interests of the state". You have been seen, in the last few months, fromJanuary and thereafter, what is meant by detention withouttrial. In the various High Courts it has been held that thedetention which has been ordered by the various ProvincialGovernments
was in some cases illegal. When there is the lawof the land to be applied to different individuals, I do notunderstand why there should be any provision at all fordetention without trial. We fought against this during thetime of the British Government, and I do not see any reasonwhy this provision should be retained now also. Of coursethis principle has been agreed to by this Assembly whileadopting the principles for the Constitution. But I wouldsubmit that this view should be changed and that theprovision which has been given a place in the Draft Constitution should be amended.
The third submission I would like to make is aboutStates, the Rulers of which have ceded their jurisdictionand power to the Central Government. The provision which hasbeen made in the Draft Constitution is beyond the terms ofreference given to the Drafting Committee. I do notunderstand why the Drafting Committee has gone beyond theterms of reference and has gone beyond the wishes of thepeople of the States who havecome under the administration of the Government of India,and adopted a Constitution which is not at all demanded orliked by the people of the States. I would therefore saythat Article 212 which has also been applied with respect tothe States who have merged with the Provinces should beamended and that the wishes of the people should berespected in that regard. Of course, in due time theamendments will be moved, and I hope the House will acceptthe same.
With these words, Sir, I command the Draft Constitutionfor the consideration of the House.
Mr. Vice-President: I am glad to announce to theHonourable Members that the President has agreed that indeference to the wishes of the House, we shall have anotherday, that is Monday, for general discussion.
The Assembly then adjourned for lunch, till Three of the Clock.
The Assembly re-assembled after lunch at Three of theClock, Mr. Vice-President (Dr. H. C. Mookherjee) in theChair.
Shri H. V. Kamath: Will you be so good as to directthat......
Mr. Vice-President (Dr. H. C. Mookherjee): Will theHonourable Member kindly resume his seat?
TAKING THE PLEDGE AND SIGNING THE REGISTER
The following member took the Pledge and signed theRegister:
Shri Ratna Lal Malaviya (C. P. and Berar States).
Mr. Vice-President: We will now resume the debate.
Shri H. V. Kamath: Will you be so good as to directthat a copy of Dr. Ambedkar's speech introducing the Draft Constitution be supplied to every Honourable Member with theleast possible delay?
Mr. Vice-President: I understand that the speech of theHonourable Dr. Ambedkar will have to be cyclostyled. Thiswill be done as quickly as possible and possibly copies willbe made available to the Members either this evening or to-morrow morning.
We will now resume the debate.
Prof. Shibban Lal Saksena (United Provinces: General):Mr. Vice-President.....
Shri B. Das (Orissa: General): Are you allowed to speaktwice on this motion?
Prof. Shibban Lal Saksena: No. Formerly I spoke on theamendment of Seth Damodar Swarup. I have not yet spoken onthe motion moved by Dr. Ambedkar.
Mr. Vice-President, we are today called upon to discussthe principles underlying our Draft Constitution. To beginwith, I must congratulate the learned Doctor who has placedthis motion before us. I have read the speech, which hedelivered, several times and I think it is a masterpiece oflucid exposition of our Constitution. I certainly think thatthere could not have been an abler advocacy for the Draft Constitution. But I would like to say something about theprinciples incorporated in the Constitution.
Sir, this Draft Constitution has accepted, as hehimself said, the democratic Government of England as themodel and has rejected the American system of Government. Ipersonally have tried to compare both and to weigh which isbetter. I personally think that our country's need atpresent is for a stable State. I think what we require firstis stability of Government. I therefore think that we shouldhave opted for the system which prevails in America. APresident
elected by adult suffrage should be in charge of the Nation and he should have the right to choose hisexecutive to carry on the administration, and the judiciaryshould be independent of the executive. I personally thinkthat stability of Government is the first need of the Nationto-day. There are already tendencies which are fissiparous.There is the demand for linguistic provinces and for re-distribution of the provinces. We have also seen quarrelsabout the division of powers between the units and theCentre. All these tendencies are natural. But if we hadmodelled our Constitution on the American example and hadadopted their system of election, I think it would have metour needs better. Therefore, in one fundamental respect Ibeg todiffer from Dr. Ambedkar who has opted for the Britishmodel. The British system works admirably. But that is theresult of seven hundred years' experience and training.Besides, I think there are two special features of Britishlife which enable them to keep their system going. There areno fissiparous tendencies and the loyalty to one King is astrong binding force. Secondly, in every Englishman, respectfor his Constitution is ingrained. In our own country, Ipersonally feel that the American system would be better.There will be less corruption and we can grow to our fullstature much better under that system than we can do underthe system recommended.
Then, Sir, Dr. Ambedkar has criticised the system ofvillage panchayats which prevailed in India and which wasenvisaged by our elders to be an ideal basis for ourConstitution. I was just now reading Mahatma Gandhi's speechin the 1931 Round Table Conference in London. He wasspeaking about the method of election to the FederalLegislature. There he recommended that the villages shouldbe the electoral units. He in fact gave fundamentalimportance to the village republics. He said that it was invillages that the real soul of India lived. I was reallysorry that Dr. Ambedkar should express such views about thevillage panchayats. I am certain that his views are not theviews of any other Members of this House. Let us see whatDr. Ambedkar has said about these village panchayats:
"Their part in the destiny of the country has been welldescribed by Metcalfe himself who says:
'Dynasty after dynasty tumbles down. Revolution suceeds to revolution. Hindoo, Pathan, Mogul, Maharashtra, Sikh, English, are all masters in turn but the village communities remain the same. In times of trouble they arm and fortify themselves. Any hostile army passes through the country. The village com-communities collect their cattle within their walls, and let the enemy pass unprovoked.'
Such is the part the village communities have played inthe history of their country. Knowing this, what pride canone feel in them? That they have survived through allvicissitudes may be a fact. But mere survival has no value.The question is on what plane they have survived. Surely ona low selfish level. I hold that these village republicshave been the ruination of India. I am therefore surprisedthat those who condemn provincilalism and communalism shouldcome forward as champions of the village. What is thevillage but a sink of localism and a den of ignorance,narrow-mindedness and communalism. I am glad that the Draft Constitution has discarded the village and adopted theindividual as its unit."
I am certain that a very large majority of the House donot agree with this view of village republics. As one whohas done work in villages and has experience of the workingof Congress village panchayats for the last twenty-fiveyears, I can say that this picture is purely imaginary. It is an entirely wrong picture. I personally feel that, if webring to these village panchayats all the light and all theknowledge which the country and the world have gathered,they will become the most potent forces for holding thecountry together and for its progress towards the ideal ofRam Rajya. In fact, the Soviet Constitution is based onvillage units, village Soviets as they are called. I feelpersonally that these village
republics, like the Russianvillage Soviets, can become models of good self-government.I think that the Constitution should provide for theestablishment of village republics.
The Upper House under this Draft Constitution is to beelected indirectly by provincial legislatures. I think itshould be elected on a wider franchise and villagepanchayats should be required to elect the Upper House. Thesuggested method of electing the Upper House by provinciallegislatures is a very wrong method. If village panchayatsare allowed to elect the Upper House, we will have a morerepresentative Upper House. I personally feel that unless wegive the villages more responsibility, we cannot reallysolve their problems.
The third point I want to touch upon is States. I fullyagree with Dr. Ambedkar in his criticism against having twokinds of constitutions, one for Indian States and one forprovinces. I feel that the States should be made to fall inline with the provinces. I hope that the States'representatives here will see that it will be moreadvantageous to have constitutions for the States similar tothose for the provinces. Instead of Governors, they can haveRajas as constitutional heads. Most of the smaller Stateshave already merged themselves with bigger units. Where theyare very small, they have already merged themselves withprovinces. I feel that the Constitution should have aprovision that, if any State wishes to fall in line with theprovinces, the provincial constitution shall apply to thatState also. I hope that by the time the Constitution ispassed, most of the States will agree to fall in line withthe provinces.
Then, Sir, about the fundamental rights, Dr. Ambedkarsaid that nowhere in the world are Fundamental Rightsabsolute. I personally feel that our Fundamental Rightsshould be in more unambiguous form. I think there is muchforce in the contention that the provisos to theseFundamental Rights take away much of the rights granted bythe Constitution. I think that these Articles should bemodified.
Then, Sir, one word about our national language. Ithink there should be a separate clause stipulating anational language on the model of the Irish Constitution. Ipersonally feel that it should be Hindi written in Devanagricharacters. Similarly I think the form of the flag shouldalso be provided for in our Constitution: what colour itshall be and what its dimensions should be, should all bedeclared in the Constitution. I also quite agree with SethGovind Das when he said that cow-slaughter should be bannedin the Indian Union. I personally feel that the sentiment ofthirty crores of population should be respected. I feel thatwe should provide in one of the Articles of thisConstitution the banning of cow-slaughter. I feel that afterall we have to take the people as they are and we will haveto respect their sentiments also. I therefore feel that thisConstitution should be amended to suit our needs andrequirements.
Lastly, Sir, I thank the Drafting Committee forproviding us with a very fine Constitution. I also feel thatthe suggestions that I have made will be discussed at theamendment stage and finally find a place in the Constitutionof our country. Sir, with these words, I commend the motionto the House.
Shri Sarangdhar Das (Orissa States): Mr. Vice-President, Sir, like all the previous speakers Icongratulate the Drafting Committee, and especially itsChairman, Dr. Ambedkar for the hard work that they have putin. But at the same time, there are certain things in hisspeech with which I cannot agree. When he says: "What is thevillage but a sink of localism and a den of ignorance,narrow-mindedness and communalism ?" I am rather suprisedthat a respected member of this House and also a Minister of the National Government should have such an idea about ourvillages. I must say here, that with the spread of westerneducation in our schools and colleges we had loss contactwith the villages, and it was our leader, Mahatma Gandhi,who advised the intelligentsia to go back to the villages,and that was some thirty years ago. For the last thirtyyears we
have been going into the villages and makingourselves one with the villagers; and in reply to Dr.Ambedkar's accusation, I would say that there is no localismin the villages. There is ignorance, - yes, ignorance of theEnglish language and also our various written languages, andthat situation is due to the kind of Government we had, aGovernment that destroyed our educational system. As far asknowledge of nature and wisdom gathered from Shastras andPuranas are concerned. I would say that there is more wisdomand more knowledge in the villages than in our moderncities.
I am not a hater of cities. I have lived in cities intwo continents, but unfortunately our cities in India areentirely different from the cities in other countries. Ourpeople living in the cities are far away from the villagers,from their life, and that is why we have become such that wethink there is nothing good in the villages. Now this ideais changing; I do not know if it is changing outside theCongress circles, but I am positive that within the Congresscircles, the idea of the villages is uppermost ineverybody's mind. I shall therefore appeal to Dr. Ambedkarto reconsider this matter and to give the villagers theirdue because the villages in the near future will come intotheir own as they used to be.
Now then when we come to the Draft Constitution itself,I am at one with Dr. Ambedkar in the matter of more power tothe Centre, because a strong Centre is very necessary at thepresent time. No matter what we say about the fundamentalsof the culture of our peoples in different provinces beingthe same, we are a heterogeneous people; and takingadvantage of the situation that the British have gone, thereare all kinds of disruptive elements trying to raise theirheads, and therefore it is essential that the Centre must bestrong so that all the different peoples of the country canbe welded together into one nation. In this connection, Iwould urge upon you to keep this idea of linguisticprovinces in abeyance for, say, five or ten years, becausealthough I come from a province where we also think thatinjustice has been done to our province, neverthelessbecause of this linguistic provinces idea during the lastone year, there has been more bitterness between the peoplesof neighbouring provinces than anything good. And this isnot the time to have bitterness. We want goodwill betweenthe neighbouring provinces and that is why I would stronglyurge that this linguistic provinces idea should be kept inabeyance for at least five years. As regards language, Iknow and every freedom-loving man in any country knows thatthere must be a national language. In that respect also, wehave different provincial languages some of which havedeveloped very much and are of a very high order, whilethere are others which are backward. So, there is acompetition between the different provincial languages. But,we must remember that we must use a language that themajority of people speak or understand. There is no languageother than Hindi that can stand this test. Hindi is alanguage based on Sanskrit. Because in the differentprovinces we study Sanskrit to some extent, although not asfully as the older generations used to do, our regionallanguages also are based on Sanskrit, our Sadhu Bhasha as wecall it in my province, that is, the scholarly language issuch, that I believe, this scholarly language spoken inOrissa can be understood by the Hindi people or the peoplefrom the Punjab and they do understand it. So also, theOriyas understand Hindi though they may not be able to speakit. The same is the case in Bengal, Maharashtra, etc. Whenwe look at it from that point of view, I am rather surprisedthat other non-Hindi-speaking friends, particularly in SouthIndia consider that the demand for adopting Hindi as ournational language is "imperialism of language". I do not seewhere there is imperialism of language. If the South Indianscan speak in no other language than English, do they mean tosay that the millions of people living in the MadrasProvince understand English? It is only a few, and a few of the
uneducated people in the cities also who understandEnglish; but not in the villages. We will have to banishEnglish; but at the same time, I would say to the advocatesof Hindi that it cannot be done right away, immediately.Some time must be given to the people of South India andother non-Hindi speaking provinces to get acquainted withHindi and to make their contacts with North India andWestern India in the national language.
The next point I want to dwell on is the Indian States.When we first considered the principles of the Constitution,some ten months ago, theIndian States were in a different position. Since then,things have changed. I cannot see how we shall have units ofIndian States and of provinces, and call them all units, andyet, the Indian States are not on a par with the provinces.Particularly I see, that the High Courts of the IndianStates will not be under the jurisdiction of the SupremeCourt. It is said in the Chapter on Fundamental Rights thatthese rights are guaranteed to every citizen in India. Itake it that a person, man or woman, living in an IndianState or in a Union of States as they have been formedduring the last few months, is a citizen of India and if hisFundamental Rights are curtailed by the Government there,there is an appeal to the High Court and that is the finaljudgment, while in the provinces, the matter can go up tothe Supreme Court. I do not see how the man or woman in theStates is on a par with the man or woman in the provinces.
Then there are various other matters that exist in manyStates, particularly in Rajputana and Central India, wherethere are Jagirdars who own practically 75 to 90 per cent of the land under the Maharajas of Jaipur, Jodhpur and Bikaner;there is an inland customs duty collected by the Jagirdarfrom the producer, and then again by the Maharajas'Government, and then when the goods are exported to theneighbouring State, that State also levies an import duty. Ican give a particular instance of cotton grown in Jaipur,paying two duties in the Jagirdar's territory and whilegoing out of Jaipur, paying another import duty in Bikaner,when exported to Bikaner, where there is no cotton grown.These matters will have to be changed and the earlier theyare changed, the better it is for the primary producer aswelle as the consumer and also for the expansion of tradeand commerce.
Then there is another matter and this is the last onethat I want to stress, that is the tribal population in thevarious States that have come into the provinces,particularly in Orissa and the Central Provinces. It is theduty of the Union Government to improve their standard ofliving, and to give social and economic amenities to all thepeople. These tribal people, unfortunately, have been in avery backward condition as far as education, sanitation andeconomic status are concerned. There are about twenty lakhsof tribal people in Orissa and about 15 lakhs in the CentralProvinces. For the quick advancement of these fellowcitizens of ours, it will be necessary to allot large sumsof money from the Centre, because the provinces cannot bearsuch heavy burdens. In the matter of financial arrangementsbetween the Centre and the provinces, it will be necessary,when there is any per capita allotment on population basis,for the purposes of the tribal people, the amount must befour or five times the ordinary allotment allowed for thenon-tribal people. I press this point particularly, because,if we are to improve their status in the quickest possibletime, it is necessary to spend more money whenever it isneeded and wherever the people are backward.
Chaudhari Ranbir Singh (East Punjab: General): *[Mr.Vice-President, while supporting the motion of Dr. AmbedkarI would like to submit a few words to this House. I agreewith Seth Govind Das that it would have been better if wehad decided upon our National Anthem, National Flag andNational Language in the very beginning. With reference towhat Shri Maitraji said yesterday, I admit that we cannotexpect our Deccan friends to speak in Hindi and to use itfor the business of the
House all at once. But there wouldhave been one advantage if the problem of the nationallanguage had been settled in the very beginning - and evennow the advantage would accrue -
*  Translation of Hindustani speech.
and it would have been that people would have come to knowwhich language was to be their national language and whichlanguage they should seek to learn.
I would not like to go deep into the question ofcentralisation and decentralisation of power, but I wouldlike to draw the attention of the House to one matter.Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation always taught usthat whether in the political or in the economic spheredecentralisation engenders a power which is much greaterthan other kinds of power. Besides, there are other reasonsalso for this view. I am a villager, born and bred in afarmer's house. Naturally I have imbibed its culture. I loveit. All the problems connected with it fill my mind. I thinkthat in building the country the villagers should get theirdue share and villagers should have their influence in everysphere. Besides there is another matter to which attentionwas drawn this morning by Babu Thakur Dasji. It is that thedistinction between rural and urban seats should be doneaway with. I have no doubt that if we take a long view of the matter it would be beneficial for the rural areas - andmore specially in a country like India where there are sevenlakhs of villages and only a few cities. But we cannotignore the conditions of today. Howsoever ingeniously we maytry to beguile them with-subtle arguments and finesentiments the village people cannot be blinded to the factthat the power of the Press and the Intelligentsia iscentred in the cities alone, and that they of the villageshave little say in the affairs of the nation. It is no use,therefore, to ignore this reality. Today a distinction hasto be maintained in our country between the rural and urbanseats. In fact reservation of seats is to be provided and itshould be provided, for those who are backward. Thereservation provided in our Constitution is rather apeculiar one. We should remember what used to be emphasisedby the Father of our Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, that is, themeans for achieving an end have to be very carefullyscrutinised, for the end is conditioned by the means. Ouraim today is to set up a secular State - a non-denominationalState. I cannot therefore, see any reason why seats shouldbe reserved for minorities or sectarian groups. I do not seeany sound reason for the adoption of such a course of action. Would not its adoption defeat the realisation ofIdeals we have in view? Our object of establishing a secularState in this country would remain merely an unrealiseddream if we decide to provide safeguards on grounds ofreligion. The training, the level of education, and thepower of the followers of Islam do not need any furtherdemonstration in the circumstances prevailing in the countryto-day for we have already had ample proof of the same.
We have seen that by the power of their organisationand with the help of a foreign power they brought about thepartition of the country. The other minorities that havealready been referred to are not less powerful. We cannotfrom any point of view call them backward communities. It isno doubt true that it may be said, if it can be said for anygroup at all, that Harijans constitute a backward class.Both from their educational and financial conditions theymay be called a backward class. But even in this respect wehave to keep in view one other consideration. It is that ifwe provide in this Constitution safeguards for Harijans, theword 'Harijans' would be perpetuated even though such is notour intention. We want to form a classless society in thecountry. But a classless society cannot be formed if we makea provision for reservation of seats on the contrary. Thiswould only perpetuate the word 'Harijan'. In my opinionthere is another way and a much better way of providingsafeguards for them. All the backward people in the countryare either peasants or labourers. All such people
weredisfranchised in Russia as did no manual work and lived notby their
*  Translation of Hindustani speech.
labour, but on the returns on their capital. We may notdisfranchise such people in our country today. We may evengive them rights according to their numbers. But we shouldprovide safeguard for manual workers, the peasants and thewage-earners. If safeguards are to be provided they must beonly for those who are peasants and wage-earners and in factsafeguards can be properly provided for them alone.
There is one thing more. As I said before, it mayperhaps be objected that this will give rise to anotherserious problem, that is to say, the words 'peasant' and'labourer' will find a permanent place in the Constitution.But I think that, even if this happens, it will not be inany way injurious to anyone. It will be all the better thatthe people of the whole country would be labelled aspeasants and workers. If every one would earn his bread bylabour, it would be the best thing for the country and theproblems of food and cloth with which the country is facedtoday would then be solved easily.
I would like to proceed to make one more observationand this I may do only as a peasant. It is with respect tothe protection of the cows. Pandit Thakurdass Bhargava and Ihad jointly moved a resolution on slaughter of cows in theCongress party and at that time it was unanimously adopted.But unfortunately no mention of it has been made in ourConstitution. Though the same was the case in regard toHindi on which question also the party had come to adecision, yet the mention of Hindi is to be found in theDraft while no mention has been made of the resolution asregards cow protection. I humbly submit that resolutionshould be carried out as a whole - rather it should beenlarged as follows:
"In discharge of the primary duty of the State toprovide adequate food, water and clothing to the nationalsand improve their standard of living the State shallendeavour: -
(a) as soon as possible to undertake the execution of irrigation and hydro-electric projects by harnessing rivers and construction of dams and adopt means of increasing production of food and fodder.
(b) to preserve, project and improve the useful breeds of cattle and ban the slaughter of useful cattle, specially milch and draught cattle and the young stocks."
Sir, I would like to make one more point in regard tothe economic order. I have no objection, rather I am happythat the Centre should be very strong. But I consider it myduty to submit that the finances of the provinces should beon a sound basis. Today there is not a single pie of theincome of the peasant who earns it by his sweat and blood,which is not taxed. If he cultivates even a single bigha ofland he has to pay a tax on it. As compared to this even anincome of two thousand rupees of other people of India isnot taxed. This is a great injustice to the peasant,particularly in a country where they dominate and have alarge population. It should rather be considered how thecontinuance of this injustice in a country of peasants wouldlook like? Therefore I want that the provincial governmentsshould realise land revenue on the same basis as the incometax; for this purpose their finances should be strengthened.
I would like to make one more observation as a Punjabi.Punjab was partitioned as a consequence of the Freedom ofIndia and partition completely dislocated the entireadministration of this Province. To bring it again into linewith the other provinces it is necessary that at least forthe next ten years, in so far as its finances are concerned,special concession should be shown to East Punjab.]
Mr. Vice-President: I have received a number ofcommunications from Honourable Members suggesting that theHouse might be adjourned as they want to go to theExhibition. I want to know the views of the House.
Honourable Members: Yes, it may be done.
Mr. Vice-President: I have got the names of sixtygentlemen who wish to speak. The adjournment will mean thatonly a smaller number will be able to speak
because there isonly one day left. It is for the House to decide what theywant.
An Honourable Member: We might adjourn at half pastfour.
Another Honourable Member: Let it be four o'clock.
Mr. Vice-President: We will carry on up to a quarterpast four.
Shri R. R. Diwakar (Bombay: General): Mr. Vice-President, Sir, Honourable Members who have spoken before mehave covered enough ground and I think I should not takemuch time of the House in going over the same ground. Iwould like to make a few points which from my point of vieware very important when we are on the eye of giving a newConstitution to our country. One thing which I wish to makequite clear is that the Draft Constitution which is beforeus is really a monumental work and we all of us have alreadygiven congratulations to the Drafting Committee and itsChairman who is piloting it through this House. At the sametime I would like to point out that the Drafting Committeehas not only drafted the decisions of the ConstituentAssembly but in my humble opinion it has gone far beyondmere drafting. I may say that it has reviewed the decisions,it has revised some of the decisions and possibly recast anumber of them. It might be that it was inevitable to do sounder the circumstances, but at the same time we, theMembers of the Constituent Assembly, should be aware of thisfact when we are considering the Draft and when we arethinking in terms of giving our amendments.
The second point I want to make is about the hurry withwhich some people want to finish the discussions about thisDraft. I do not think that much hurry will be beneficial ingoing through the Draft. Enough time should be allowed, andnone of the amendments that may be given should in any waybe suppressed or insufficient time given to them. Enoughtime should be given for the discussion of important things.If not for anything else, I want to point out that it ismore than one year since Free India is in existence, andthis year has been one of rich experience. This experienceitself, I think, should make us pause and think aboutchanging a number of provisions that are there in the Draft,as it is today before us.
Let us take the question of adult franchise. A numberof us are already thinking as to whether we shall have therequired type of people in the legislatures if westraightaway introduce adult franchise. I am one of thosewho would suggest that while we should keep adult franchiseas it is, so far as the electorate is concerned, we shouldconsider and put our heads together and see if thequalifications of candidates are, in a way, such as wouldbring to the legislatures people who would really be capableof shouldering their responsibilities. No doubt it is asuperstition with western democratic method that each onewho has a vote is also eligible for becoming a candidate.But I do not think that it is absolutely necessary for thepurposes of democracy to follow this tradition of westerncountries. We can as well think about the importantconsideration that we want a legislator who is not merely arepresentative but also a representative who can legislateand who has a certain perspective. While we are speaking interms of nationalism, unitary government, strong Centreetc., all these words would be useless and meaningless if wedo not have in our legislatures people who have thisperspective and who can look upon every piece of legislationwith this perspective and in this context. The Constitution,after all, draws its force from the people who work in andif we are not able to send to the legislatures people whocan understand, who can grasp the spirit of the wholeConstitution, I thinkit would be very difficult to work it for what it is worth.I want to point out that there are some more considerationsof this type which experience has brought home to us duringthe past one year, and they should stand us in good stead inconsidering the Draft that is before us.
Another important point which has been harped upon fromthis platform is about linguistic provinces and the questionof language. The battle of languages has been or
is beingfought almost from day to day - it comes up in a number ofdubious ways. But I think that when once we have all agreedthat there should be a lingua franca, a national language, Ido not think that we should quarrel any more about detailsand emphasise unnecessarily the point that our Constitutionitself should be in that language. With due respect to theHindi language - or Hindustani or whatever we may call it - Ishould say that it has not yet developed the connotations,that are necessary for its free use in legalistic andconstitutional works as well as constitutional methods andinterpretation. Therefore, it is absolutely necessary thatwe should wait a little more before we rush in that way. Iwould plead that we should pass the Constitution in theEnglish language and we should also have a good Hinditranslation of it, but so far as an authoritative version isconcerned, for the next few years the English one should bethat authoritative version. That, of course, is my humbleopinion.
Now, the old hatred or rather the dislike for theEnglish language must really lapse with the 15th of August1947. Before the 15th August 1947, we were using the Englishlanguage as slaves, and therefore we ought to have felt therevulsion that we were feeling. But today, it is out ofchoice, out of the merits of that language possibly, out of the difficulties of the situation, on account of theheterogeneous languages which so many of us speak that wetake to it, we rely on it for some period; and that I thinkshould be the best way of doing things. It is from the pointof view of arriving at the highest common measure, what maybe called the highest common factor, that we ought to lookat this problem; then I hope we shall be coming to a verygood conclusion and a harmonious one.
Now about linguistic provinces. The question is beforethe Commission that has been appointed by the President ofour Assembly; it is premature to say anything about it.Really speaking, I wish that none had referred to it fromthis platform. But since it has been referred to, I shouldthink that this question should not in any way be shelved orpostponed since this Constituent Assembly is there; andsince we are considering the whole future of the country aswell as of the Provinces, it is no use simply brushing itaside saying that there are difficulties in the way. Ifthere are difficulties, well, we are all here to see thatthose difficulties are removed. I do not think that thereare insuperable difficulties which we cannot overcome as anation. We have overcome greater difficulties, possibly weshall have to overcome far greater difficulties in future,and at such a time it is necessary that each limb of thenation, each group in the country, feels that its future isassured, that its development is assured and that there isno danger of its being suppressed or neglected in the futureConstitution of India.
Sir, I once more urge that we should not be in a hurryabout this Constitution - it might take a few days more or afew days less. I would urge you to take fully intoconsideration the experience that we have had during thewhole year and bring that experience to bear upon theprovisions of the Draft Constitution that we have before us.
With these few remarks, I commend the Draft andcongratulate once again the Drafting Committee and its ableChairman and on the way in which he has presented this Draftto this House.
Shri Himmat Singh K. Maheshwari (Sikkim-and-CoochBehar): Mr. Vice-President, Sir, the House has during thepast two days heard some very vigorous and useful criticismson the Draft-before it. It is not my intention to repeat orto paraphrase any of the suggestions that have been made. Ishall permit myself to make only one general comment and tomake one appeal.
The general comment that I wish to make is that theDraft tends to make people, or will tend to make people,more litigious, more inclined to go to law courts, lesstruthful and less likely to follow the methods of truth andnon-violence. If I may say so, Sir, the Draft is really alawyers' paradise. It opens up
vast avenues of litigationand will give our able and ingenious lawyers plenty of workto do. Whether this will help the nation as a whole, isextremely doubtful.
Many of the provisions of the Draft confer benefits orconcessions of a somewhat illusory character. Some of them,in my opinion, are even harmful. The question then is: whatis this blemish due to? I shall hazard an answer: the answeris that the raw material out of which this Draft has beenmade is all foreign. The ideas are foreign, the garb isforeign, and what is more, the form is top-heavy. With thesedisadvantages I am afraid it was not possible to do muchbetter than what the Committee has done. Whether at thisstage it will be possible to remove these defects I amunable to say. But I wish to put in a strong plea that whenthe Draft is examined clause by clause by the House, everyeffort should be made to expunge all unnecessary provisionsand provisions which might more conveniently be left forlegislation by the Dominion Parliament in future.
The appeal which I wish to make to the House is inconnection with a subject which has been touched upon by anumber of speakers today and yesterday. It is in connectionwith reservation of seats in the legislatures for theminorities - Muslims, Sikhs, Scheduled Castes and others. Myfriend Mr. Karimuddin sounded a very healthy note yesterdaywhen he opposed reservation of seats for Muslims. From mypersonal experience in the State which I represent, I amable to say that the refusal to grant separate electoratesand the refusal to grant reservation of seats in thelegislatures to Muslims during the last 25 or 30 years hashad the most beneficial results in my State. The result hasbeen that Hindus and Muslims have always been on the mostfriendly terms and have, even during the troublous times of1946, 1947 and this year, remained on the most friendlyterms without breaking each others' heads. They co-operatein every field of life and are the best of friends.Reservations are bound to encourage separatism and postponeat least for some time the realisation of the dream which wehave, namely, that of evolving a truly secular State. Aslong as any community demands and gets reservation of seatsin the legislatures a truly secular State, in my opinion,must remains a distant dream. I therefore make a mostearnest appeal to my friends of all minority communities todrop their claim for reservations voluntarily so that thisConstitution may start off as a truly democratic, virile,strong Constitution without any drawbacks to begin with. Oneof our Sikh friends yesterday, as far as I could understandhim, also put in a plea I believe against reservation. Thatis a very healthy sign. I have still to hear what theScheduled Castes in this House have to say. Personally, Sir,I have always felt that giving any person the name of aScheduled Caste involves a stigma.
(At this stage the bell was rung indicating that theMember's time was up.)
I bow to your call, Sir. I have said nearly all that Iwanted to say.
Mr. Vice-President: The House stands adjourned till 10o'clock on Monday, the 8th November 1948.
The Assembly then adjourned till Ten of the Clock onMonday, the 8th November 1948.