The wiki entry says, “The Constitution of India was adopted on 26 November 1949 and came into effect on 26 January 1950, proclaiming India to be a sovereign, democratic republic. It contained the founding principles of the law of the land which would govern India after its independence from British rule. On the day the constitution came into effect, India ceased to be a dominion of the British Crown. The Indian constitution is the world’s longest constitution. At the time of commencement, the constitution had 395 articles in 22 parts and 8 schedules. It consists of almost 80,000 words and took 2 years 11 months and 18 days to build.”
I have not be able to read the Indian constitution. If you have not read it also, please RT. I want to do an informal survey. 'ktxbi
— Atanu Dey (@atanudey) November 26, 2013
I have tried unsuccessfully to read the constitution. I could not understand it. Over the years I have asked thousands of educated Indians if they have read the Indian constitution and not one has claimed to have read it fully. A few have read parts of it, some only the preamble, and most have no idea what it is about except for that they know that it is the longest constitution in the world.
The Indian constitution is like the holy books of the monotheists. They all hold it in high regard but only a few have read. If you ask them, they will say, “Yes of course, I have read it.” Probe deeper, “You mean you have read it cover to cover?” and they will admit, “Well, I have read parts of it.” That does not count as having read it.
“Have you read Tolstoy’s War and Peace?”
“Start to finish?”
“No, the first couple of pages.”
The point here is to show that the constitution is unread and that’s primarily because it is unreadable.
Why does it have to be readable? Because it is supposed to lay down the basic rules of the state. Why? Because it has those basic rules have to be properly understood by the people. Why? Because if you don’t understand them, you cannot agree with them, and which agreement is important as a citizen.
Update: For a brief discussion on what a constitution should be like for a constitutional republic, see “Constitution, Government, Economy” Nov 26, 2015.