Working A Democratic Constitution - A History of the Indian Experience

Working A Democratic Constitution - A History of the Indian Experience

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Author: Granville Austin
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Year: 2003
Language: English
Pages: 771
ISBN/UPC (if available): 0195656105

Description

This important book offers critical insights into four decades of the Indian Constitution. It charts the course of constitutional reform in India from the euphoric idealism of the post-independence period, through the crisis years of emergency, and up to Rajiv Gandhi’s brief stay in power. The book analyses the ways in which various legal and political issues, thrown up by vicissitudes of democracy have affected the making of the Indian constitution.

Written with clarity and elegance it is an indispensable work for scholars and students of law, modern history, politics, and general readers interested in the course of India’s constitutional development.

REVIEWS

This classical work of Granville Austin is a must for every judge, lawyer, historian, researcher, and other persons interested in the constitutional history of India.
-Soli J Sorabjee, Attorney General of India

Superbly written with a buoyant empathy, the author unfolds the triumphs and strains of working a truly democratic Constitution. The gripping narrative tempts the reader on, from one chapter to the next, It is truly inspiring work.
-Fali Nariman, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India

It is monumental work based on a decade of painstaking research; it is must reading for those who are interested in finding out how democracy can and does function in a large, poor and highly diversified country.
-P N Dhar, Emeritus Professor, Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi

Contents

Abbreviations

Introduction

Prologue

PART I: THE GREAT CONSTITUTIONAL THEMES EMERGE, 1950-66

Settling Into Harness
Free Speech, Liberty, and Public Order
The Social Revolution and the First Amendment
The Rights and The Revolution: More Property Amendments
The Judiciary: Quite Untouchable
Making and Preserving a Nation

PART II: THE GREAT CONSTITUINAL CONFRONTATION: JUDICIAL VERSUS PARLIAMENTARY SUPREMACY, 1967-73

Indira Gandhi: In Context and in Power
The Golak Nath Inheritance
Two Catalytic Defeats
Radical Constitutional Amendments
Redeeming the Web: The Kesavananda Bharati Case
A Grievous Blow: The Supersession of Judges

PART III: DEMOCRACY RESCUED OR THE CONSTITUION SUBVERTED?: THE EMERGENCY AND THE FORTY-SECOND AMENDMENT, 1975-7

26 June 1975
Closing the Circle
The Judiciary Under Pressure
Preparing for Constitutional Change
The Forty-Second Amendment: Sacrificing Democracy to Power

PART IV: THE JANATA INTERLUDE: DEMOCRACY RESTORED

Indira Gandhi Defeated-Janata Forms a Government
Restoring Democratic Governance
Governing Under the Constitution
The Punishment that Failed
A Government Dies

PART V: INDIRA GANDHI RETURNS

Ghosts of Governments Past
The Constitution Strengthened and Weakened
Judicial Reform or Harassment?
Turbulence in Federal Relations

PART VI: THE INSEPARABLE TWINS: NATIONAL UNITY AND INTEGRITY AND THE MACHINERY OF FEDERAL RELATIONS

Terminology and Its Perils
The Governor’s Acutely Controversial Role
New Delhi’s Long ARM
Coordinating Mechanisms: How Federal?

PART VII: CONCLUSION

A Nation’s Progress

Bibliography

Index