We The People Of India

I wrote this post out for a website, however, it couldn’t be published there in time. Just wanted to share it…

I owe this post to Jerry Pinto, a well known journalist, poet and a writer. As a professor whose aim was to introduce us to journalism, he asked us to read a couple of books, one of which was the Constitution of India. “You are living in the country, na? You should find out what the country is all about otherwise each one of you pay me Rs.17.56 paisa! Most of your education comes from the taxes I pay and if you don’t know this much also na, my money went to waste, I want it back. Ok?”

That’s when it dawned on me. We take pride in being Indian, we get a lump in our throats when we hear our National anthem and we take pride in slamming the politicians for totally screwing the system up, but how many of us bother to find out what being an Indian legally means, what are the fundamental factors that built India. How many of us have ever read the Constitution leave alone possess it?

As we approach the 2009 elections, various groups are being proactive in urging citizens of India to vote. The tedious process of registration is being simplified and a lot of questions are being thrown at the political parties hoping to get power.

Most important of all though, is self-introspection. It is important to understand your own civil duties and rights before you choose the leaders of the nation. It is your duty to find out what we stand for. It’s easy for us to blame the government and ministers for debacles but we as a society are to be blamed.

Here is what our Preamble says. Read it and ask yourselves, is this what my country stands for, am I, as a citizen of India ensuring that these words do not remain just words:

“WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a _1[SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC] and to secure to all its citizens:

JUSTICE, social, economic and political;

LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;

EQUALITY of status and of opportunity;

and to promote among them all

FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the _2[unity and integrity of the Nation];

IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this twenty-sixth day of November, 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION.”
Source: http://indiacode.nic.in/coiweb/coifiles/preamble.htm

While there’s poverty, while there’s corruption and while there exists communalism how can these words ever be held true?

So as we ready ourselves to vote and exercise our right, let’s take it upon ourselves to make sure that the preamble stands for more than just words. Lets fight for a better tomorrow, for you, me and the generations to come. And that’s where I recommend you watch this ad campaign featuring Aamir Khan.

So lets make sure that each one of us uses our vote sensibly and sensitively. Jai Hind!

4 comments for “We The People Of India

  1. May 8, 2009 at 6:44 am

    Jerry Boy – he would make more sense after a half of Buddha Sadhu:)

    But always love his writings since the time worked with him. Though I am yet to receive his promised autographed books.

  2. May 8, 2009 at 7:01 am

    Jerry’s one of the funnest professors i ever had. he did flunk most of us, but then that’s him! u worked with him and all?

  3. May 13, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    Now *this* brought a lump in my throat!

  4. June 9, 2010 at 5:17 pm

    The Indian constitution is one of the best documents written in the history of time. What sets it different is the people who wrote it, and the motive behind it. While American Constitution was written by white anglo-saxon farmers, French Constitution was given to it by an oppressed proletariat after a bloody revolution, and the judges of Britain are still figuring out how exactly to make a Constitution, India has a detailed and the finest constitution in place!

    Our constitution was crafted by the most emancipated minds of the time, and thankfully, not directed by the confused Nehruvian social policy that guided successive governments. Men like Ambedkar, B. N. Rau, Sardar Patel, K. M. Munshi and Alladi debated over to protect the basic freedoms of the new nation, with particular care being taken of the historically underprivileged. Apart from freedoms and rights and values, our constitution is also very detailed, like the sacred Muslim texts.

    To me, it is a code of powerful ethical values. It guarantees rights, reminds of the country’s goals, enshrines the fundamental duties, and defines the role of the three organs of state , but all these would be meaningless if the stakeholders do not rise to the occasion. Who are these men and women? In a broad sense, it is ‘WE, THE PEOPLE’- each one of us, and not merely those holding elective and nominated offices. Let us not forget that every right has a corresponding duty and WE are liable to it!

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