How the Constitution of India amended?

IAS Mains General Studies Sample Answers

How is the Constitution of India amended? Do you think that the procedure for amendment makes the Constitution a-play-thing in the hands of the Centre?

Emblem of IndiaThe Constitution Amendment Bill is provided by the Article 368 of the constitution. Such bill can be introduced in either House of Parliament, according to it. Provisions are as follows for this types of bills:

  • A majority of the total membership of that House and also by.

  • A majority of not less than two thirds of members present and voting. There is no provision for joint sittings for such bills.

On the other hand an ordinary Bill is passed through following procedures:

  • No prior recommendations of the President is required for an Ordinary Bill while such recommendation is pre-requisite for a Constitution Amendment Bill.

  • It can also be introduced in either House and it can be introduced by a Private Member also. " In case of failure of the bill due to lack of majority a joint sitting under Article 108 can be called upon.

  • Rajya Sabha can amend it or can reject it.

Article 368, the constitution is divided in three parts for the purpose of amendment. They are:

(i) Simple Majority: A bill is passed from both Houses by simple majority and then it is sent to the President for his assent.
(ii) Special Majority: The bill needs to be passed by both the Houses by two third majority of the members present and voting and by majority of the total number of that House.
(iii) Special majority and ratification by the States: After passing the bill by both Houses by special majority, it is also required to amend some provisions of the constitution, that the bill must be ratified by not less than one half of two states.

But the amending power under Article 368 has been curtailed by a judicial decision in Keshwanand Bharati case by imposing the doctrine of Basic structure. The government should not take the decision of a court as a challenge against it but in the spirit of the compromise and cooperation between the two organs of the state. Thus, after the judicial decision our constitution is not more, a plaything at the hand of centre.

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