Amendment of the Constitution of India | Wikipedia audio article
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Amendment of the Constitution of India | Wikipedia audio article


Amending the Constitution of India is the
process of making changes to the nation’s fundamental law or supreme law. The procedure of amendment in the constitution
is laid down in Part XX (Article 368) of the Constitution of India. This procedure ensures the sanctity of the
Constitution of India and keeps a check on arbitrary power of the Parliament of India. However, there is another limitation imposed
on the amending power of the constitution of India, which developed during conflicts
between the Supreme Court and Parliament, where Parliament wants to exercise discretionary
use of power to amend the constitution while the Supreme Court wants to restrict that power. This has led to the laying down of various
doctrines or rules in regard to checking the validity/legality of an amendment, the most
famous among them is the Basic structure doctrine as laid down by the Supreme Court in the case
of Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala.==Constituent Assembly debates==
The framers of the Constitution were neither in favour of the traditional theory of federalism,
which entrusts the task of constitutional amendment to a body other than the Legislature,
nor did they favour a rigid special procedure for such amendments. They also never wanted to have a British-style
system where Parliament is supreme. The framers, instead, adopted a combination
of the “theory of fundamental law”, which underlies the written Constitution of the
United States with the “theory of parliamentary sovereignty” as existing in the United Kingdom. The Constitution of India vests constituent
power upon the Parliament subject to the special procedure laid down therein.During the discussion
in the Constituent Assembly on this aspect, some members were in favour of adopting an
easier mode of amending procedure for the initial five to ten years. Explaining why it was necessary to introduce
an element of flexibility in the Constitution, Jawaharlal Nehru observed in the Constituent
Assembly on 8 November 1948, “While we want this Constitution to be as solid and as permanent
a structure as we can make it, nevertheless there is no permanence in Constitutions. There should be a certain flexibility. If you make anything rigid and permanent,
you stop a nation’s growth, the growth of a living, vital, organic people. Therefore, it has to be flexible … while
we, who are assembled in this House, undoubtedly represent the people of India, nevertheless
I think it can be said, and truthfully, that when a new House, by whatever name it goes,
is elected in terms of this Constitution, and every adult in India has the right to
vote – man and woman – the House that emerges then will certainly be fully representative
of every section of the Indian people. It is right that House elected so – under
this Constitution of course it will have the right to do anything – should have an easy
opportunity to make such changes as it wants to. But in any event, we should not make a Constitution,
such as some other great countries have, which are so rigid that they do not and cannot be
adapted easily to changing conditions. Today especially, when the world is in turmoil
and we are passing through a very swift period of transition, what we may do today may not
be wholly applicable tomorrow. Therefore, while we make a Constitution which
is sound and as basic as we can, it should also be flexible …”Dr. P.S. Deshmukh believed that the amendment of the
Constitution should be made easier as he felt there were contradictory provisions in some
places which would be more and more apparent when the provisions were interpreted, and
that the whole administration would suffer, if the amendment to the Constitution was not
made easy. Brajeshwar Prasad also favoured a flexible
Constitution so as to make it survive the test of time. He was of the opinion that rigidity tends
to check progressive legislation or gradual innovation. On the other hand, H.V. Kamath favoured ensuring
procedural safeguards to avoid the possibility of hasty amendment to the Constitution. “It is said that the provisions contained
in the Draft make amendment difficult. It is proposed that the Constitution should
be amendable by a simple majority at least for some years. The argument is subtle and ingenious. It is said that this Constituent Assembly
is not elected on adult suffrage while the future Parliament will be elected on adult
suffrage and yet the former has been given the right to pass the Constitution by a simple
majority while the latter has been denied the same right. It is paraded as one of the absurdities of
the Draft Constitution. I must repudiate the charge because it is
without foundation. To know how simple are the provisions of the
Draft Constitution in respect of amending the Constitution one has only to study the
provisions for amendment contained in the American and Australian Constitutions. Compared to them those contained in the Draft
Constitution will be found to be the simplest. The Draft Constitution has eliminated the
elaborate and difficult procedures such as a decision by a convention or a referendum
… It is only for amendments of specific matters—and they are only few—that the
ratification of the State Legislatures is required. All other Articles of the Constitution are
left to be amended by Parliament. The only limitation is that it shall be done
by a majority of not less than two-thirds of the members of each House present and voting
and a majority of the total membership of each House. It is difficult to conceive a simpler method
of amending the Constitution. What is said to be the absurdity of the amending
provisions is founded upon a misconception of the position of the Constituent Assembly
and of the future Parliament elected under the Constitution. The Constituent Assembly in making a Constitution
has no partisan motive. Beyond securing a good and workable Constitution
it has no axe to grind. In considering the Articles of the Constitution
it has no eye on getting through a particular measure. The future Parliament if it met as Constituent
Assembly, its members will be acting as partisans seeking to carry amendments to the Constitution
to facilitate the passing of party measures which they have failed to get through Parliament
by reason of some Article of the Constitution which has acted as an obstacle in their way. Parliament will have an axe to grind while
the Constituent Assembly has none. That is the difference between the Constituent
Assembly and the future Parliament. That explains why the Constituent Assembly
though elected on limited franchise can be trusted to pass the Constitution by simple
majority and why the Parliament though elected on adult suffrage cannot be trusted with the
same power to amend it.”==Procedure==
The Constitution of India provides for a distinctive amendment process when compared to the Constitutions
of other nations. It can be described as partly flexible and
partly rigid. The Constitution provides for a variety in
the amending process. This feature has been commended by Australian
academic Sir Kenneth Wheare who felt that uniformity in the amending process imposed
“quite unnecessary restrictions” upon the amendment of parts of a Constitution. An amendment of the Constitution can be initiated
only by the introduction of a Bill in either House of Parliament. The Bill must then be passed in each House
by a majority of the total membership of that House and by a majority of not less than two-thirds
of the members of that House present and voting. There is no provision for a joint sitting
in case of disagreement between the two Houses. The Bill, passed by the required majority,
is then presented to the President who shall give his assent to the Bill. If the amendment seeks to make any change
in any of the provisions mentioned in the proviso to article 368, it must be ratified
by the Legislatures of not less than one-half of the States. Although there is no prescribed time limit
for ratification, it must be completed before the amending Bill is presented to the President
for his assent.Every constitutional amendment is formulated as a statute. The first amendment is called the “Constitution
(First Amendment) Act”, the second, the “Constitution (Second Amendment) Act”, and so forth. Each usually has the long title “An Act further
to amend the Constitution of India”.===Types of amendments===
The original constitution provided for three categories of amendments. The first category of amendments are those
contemplated in articles 4 (2), 169 -1962, 239A (2) -1962, 239AA (7b) -1991, 243M (4b)
-1992, 243ZC (3) -1992, 244A (4) -1969, 356 (1)c, para 7(2) of chitiya sala V and para
21(2) of Schedule VI. These amendments can be effected by Parliament
by a simple majority such as that required for the passing of any ordinary law. The amendments under this category are specifically
excluded from the purview of article 368 which is the specific provision in the Constitution
dealing with the power and the procedure for the amendment of the Constitution. Article 4 provides that laws made by Parliament
under article 2 (relating to admission or establishment of new States) and article 3
(relating to formation of new States and alteration of areas, boundaries or names of existing
States) effecting amendments in the First Schedule or the Fourth Schedule and supplemental,
incidental and consequential matters, shall not be deemed to be amendments of the Constitution
for the purposes of article 368. For example, the States Reorganisation Act,
1956, which brought about the reorganization of the States in India, was passed by Parliament
as an ordinary piece of legislation. In Mangal Singh v. Union of India (A.I.R.
1967 S.C. 944), the Supreme Court held that power to reduce the total number of members
of Legislative Assembly below the minimum prescribed under article 170 (1) is implicit
in the authority to make laws under article 4. Article 169 empowers Parliament to provide
by law for the abolition or creation of the Legislative Councils in States and specifies
that though such law shall contain such provisions for the amendment of the Constitution as may
be necessary, it shall not be deemed to be an amendment of the Constitution for the purposes
of article 368. The Legislative Councils Act, 1957, which
provided for the creation of a Legislative Council in Andhra Pradesh and for increasing
the strength of the Legislative Councils in certain other States, is an example of a law
passed by Parliament in an exercise of its powers under article 169. The Fifth Schedule contains provisions as
to the administration and control of the Schedule Areas and Scheduled Tribes. Para 7 of the Schedule vests Parliament with
plenary powers to enact laws amending the Schedule and lays down that no such law shall
be deemed to be an amendment of the Constitution for the purposes of article 368. Under Para 21 of the Sixth Schedule, Parliament
has full power to enact laws amending the Sixth Schedule which contains provisions for
the administration of Tribal Areas in the States of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. No such law will be deemed to be an amendment
of the Constitution for the purposes of article 368. The second category includes amendments that
can be effected by Parliament by a prescribed ‘special majority’; and the third category
of amendments includes those that require, in addition to such “special majority”, ratification
by at least one-half of the State Legislatures. The last two categories are governed by article
368.Ambedkar speaking in the Constituent Assembly on 17 September 1949, pointed out that there
were “innumerable articles in the Constitution” which left matters subject to laws made by
Parliament. Under article 11, Parliament may make any
provision relating to citizenship notwithstanding anything in article 5 to 10. Thus, by passing ordinary laws, Parliament
may, in effect, provide, modify or annul the operation of certain provisions of the Constitution
without actually amending them within the meaning of article 368. Since such laws do not, in fact, make any
change whatsoever in the letter of the Constitution, they cannot be regarded as amendments of the
Constitution nor categorized as such. Other examples include Part XXI of the Constitution—”Temporary,
Transitional and Special Provisions” whereby “Notwithstanding anything in this Constitution”
power is given to Parliament to make laws with respect to certain matters included in
the State List (article 369); article 370 (1) (d) which empowers the President to modify,
by order, provisions of the Constitution in their application to the State of Jammu and
Kashmir; provisos to articles 83 (2) and 172 (1) empower Parliament to extend the lives
of the House of the People and the Legislative Assembly of every State beyond a period of
five years during the operation of a Proclamation of Emergency; and articles 83(1) and 172 (2)
provide that the Council of States/Legislative Council of a State shall not be subject to
dissolution but as nearly as possible one-t===
Amendments under article 368===part-xx Article 368 (1) of the Constitution
of India grants constituent power to make formal amendments and empowers Parliament
to amend the Constitution by way of addition, variation or repeal of any provision according
to the procedure laid down therein, which is different from the procedure for ordinary
legislation. Article 368 has been amended by the 24th and
42nd Amendments in 1971 and 1976 respectively. The following is the full text of Article
368 of the Constitution, which governs constitutional amendments. New clauses 368 (1) and 368 (3) were added
by the 24th Amendment in 1971, which also added a new clause (4) in article 13 which
reads, “Nothing in this article shall apply to any amendment of this Constitution made
under article 368.” The provisions in italics were inserted by
the 42nd Amendment but were later declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in Minerva
Mills v. Union of India in 1980. After the 24th amendment, Article 4(2), etc.
of the constitution are superseded/made void by article 368 (1) which is the only procedure
for amending the constitution however marginal may be the nature of the amendment. Supreme court ruled that the constituent power
under article 368 must be exercised by the Parliament in the prescribed manner and cannot
be exercised under the legislative powers of the Parliament. 368. Power of Parliament to amend the Constitution
and Procedure therefor: (1) Notwithstanding anything in this Constitution,
Parliament may in exercise of its constituent power amend by way of addition, variation
or repeal any provision of this Constitution in accordance with the procedure laid down
in this article.(2) An amendment of this Constitution may be initiated only by the introduction
of a Bill for the purpose in either House of Parliament, and when the Bill is passed
in each House by a majority of the total membership of that House and by a majority of not less
than two-thirds of the members of that House present and voting, it shall be presented
to the President who shall give his assent to the Bill and thereupon the Constitution
shall stand amended in accordance with the terms of the Bill:Provided that if such amendment
seeks to make any change in – (a) article 54, article 55, article 73, article
162 or article 241, or (b) Chapter IV of Part V, Chapter V of Part
VI, or Chapter I of Part XI, or (c) any of the Lists in the Seventh Schedule,
or (d) the representation of States in Parliament,
or (e) the provisions of this article,
the amendment shall also require to be ratified by the Legislatures of not less than one-half
of the States by resolutions to that effect passed by those Legislatures before the Bill
making provision for such amendment is presented to the President for assent.(3) Nothing in
article 13 shall apply to any amendment made under this article.(4) No amendment of this
Constitution (including the provisions of Part III) made or purporting to have been
made under this article whether before or after the commencement of section 55 of the
Constitution (Fortysecond Amendment) Act, 1976 shall be called in question in any court
on any ground.(5) For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that there shall be
no limitation whatever on the constituent power of Parliament to amend by way of addition,
variation or repeal the provisions of this Constitution under this article. As per the procedure laid out by article 368
for amendment of the Constitution, an amendment can be initiated only by the introduction
of a Bill in either House of Parliament. The Bill must then be passed in each House
by a majority of the total membership of that House and by a majority of not less than two-thirds
of the members of that House present and voting. There is no provision for a joint sitting
in case of disagreement between the two Houses. Total membership in this context has been
defined to mean the total number of members comprising the House irrespective of any vacancies
or absentees on any account vide Explanation to Rule 159 of the Rules of Procedure and
Conduct of Business in Lok Sabha.The Bill, passed by the required majority, is then presented
to the President who shall give his assent to the Bill. If the amendment seeks to make any change
in any of the provisions mentioned in the proviso to article 368, it must be ratified
by the Legislatures of not less than one-half of the States. These provisions relate to certain matters
concerning the federal structure or of common interest to both the Union and the States
viz., the election of the President (articles 54 and 55); the extent of the executive power
of the Union and the States (articles 73 and 162); the High Courts for Union territories
(article 241); The Union Judiciary and the High Courts in the States (Chapter IV of Part
V and Chapter V of Part VI); the distribution of legislative powers between the Union and
the States (Chapter I of Part XI and Seventh Schedule); the representation of States in
Parliament; and the provision for amendment of the Constitution laid down in article 368. Ratification is done by a resolution passed
by the State Legislatures. There is no specific time limit for the ratification
of an amending Bill by the State Legislatures. However, the resolutions ratifying the proposed
amendment must be passed before the amending Bill is presented to the President for his
assent.===Rules of Procedure in Parliament===Article 368 does not specify the legislative
procedure to be followed at various stages of enacting an amendment. There are gaps in the procedure as to how
and after what notice a Bill is to be introduced, how it is to be passed by each House and how
the President’s assent is to be obtained. This point was decided by the Supreme Court
in Shankari Prasad Singh Deo v. Union of India (AIR 1951 SC 458). Delivering the judgment, Patanjali Sastri
J. observed, “Having provided for the constitution of a Parliament and prescribed a certain procedure
for the conduct of its ordinary legislative business to be supplemented by rules made
by each House (article 118), the makers of the Constitution must be taken to have intended
Parliament to follow that procedure, so far as it may be applicable consistently with
the express provisions of article 368, when they entrusted to it power of amending the
Constitution.” Hence, barring the requirements of special
majority, ratification by the State Legislatures in certain cases, and the mandatory assent
by the President, a Bill for amending the Constitution is dealt with the Parliament
following the same legislative process as applicable to an ordinary piece of legislation. The Rules of the House in the Rajya Sabha
do not contain special provisions with regard to Bills for the amendment of the Constitution
and the Rules relating to ordinary Bills apply, subject to the requirements of article 368.The
Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business make certain specific provisions regarding
amendment bills in the Lok Sabha. They relate to the voting procedure in the
House at various stages of such Bills, in the light of the requirements of article 368;
and the procedure before introduction in the case of such Bills, if sponsored by Private
Members. Although the “special majority”, required
by article 368 is prima facie applicable only to the voting at the final stage, the Lok
Sabha Rules prescribe adherence to this constitutional requirement at all the effective stages of
the Bill, i.e., for adoption of the motion that the Bill be taken into consideration;
that the Bill as reported by the Select/Joint Committee be taken into consideration, in
case a Bill has been referred to a Committee; for adoption of each clause or schedule or
clause or schedule as amended, of a Bill; or that the Bill or the Bill as amended, as
the case may be, be passed.This provision was arrived at after consultation with the
Attorney-General and detailed discussions in the Rules Committee. It has been described as “evidently ex abundanti
cautela”, a Latin phrase, which in law, describes someone taking precautions against a very
remote contingency. By strictly adhering to article 368, the provision
is intended to ensure the validity of the procedure adopted, but also guard against
the possibility of violation of the spirit and scheme of that article 29 by the consideration
of a Bill seeking to amend the Constitution including its consideration clause by clause
being concluded in the House with only the bare quorum present. Voting at all the above stages is by division. However, the Speaker may, with the concurrence
of the House, put any group of clauses or schedules together to the vote of the House,
provided that the Speaker will permit any of the clauses or schedules be put separately,
if any member requests that. The Short Title, Enacting Formula and the
Long Title are adopted by a simple majority. The adoption of amendments to clauses or schedules
of the Bill, requires a majority of members present and voting in the same manner as in
the case of any other Bill.====Private Members’ Bills====
A Bill for amendment of the Constitution by a Private Member is governed by the rules
applicable to Private Members’ Bills in general. The period of one month’s notice applies to
such a Bill also. In addition, in Lok Sabha, such a Bill has
to be examined and recommended by the Committee on Private Members’ Bills before it is included
in the List of Business. The Committee has laid down the following
principles as guiding criteria in making their recommendations in regard to these Bills: “(i) The Constitution should be considered
as a sacred document — a document which should not be lightly interfered with and
it should be amended only when it is found absolutely necessary to do so. Such amendments may generally be brought forward
when it is found that the interpretation of the various articles and provisions of the
Constitution has not been in accordance with the intention behind such provisions and cases
of lacunae or glaring inconsistencies have come to light. Such amendments should, however, normally
be brought by the Government after considering the matter in all its aspects and consulting
experts, and taking such other advice as they may deem fit. (ii) Some time should elapse before a proper
assessment of the working of the Constitution and its general effect is made so that any
amendments that may be necessary are suggested as a result of sufficient experience. (iii) Generally speaking, notice of Bills
from Private Members should be examined in the background of the proposal or measures
which the Government may be considering at the time so that consolidated proposals are
brought forward before the House by the Government after collecting sufficient material and taking
expert advice. (iv) Whenever a Private Member’s Bill raises
issues of far-reaching importance and public interest, the Bill might be allowed to be
introduced so that public opinion is ascertained and gauged to enable the House to consider
the matter further. In determining whether a matter is of sufficient
public importance, it should be examined whether the particular provisions in the Constitution
are adequate to satisfy the current ideas and public demand at the time. In other words, the Constitution should be
adapted to the current needs and demands of the progressive society and any rigidity which
may impede progress should be avoided.”===
Role of state legislatures===The role of the states in constitutional amendment
is limited. State legislatures cannot initiate any Bill
or proposal for amendment of the Constitution. They are associated in the process of the
amendment only through the ratification procedure laid down in article 368, in case the amendment
seeks to make any change in any of the provisions mentioned in the proviso to article 368. The only other provision for constitutional
changes by state legislatures is to initiate the process for creating or abolishing Legislative
Councils in their respective legislatures, and to give their views on a proposed Parliamentary
bill seeking to affect the area, boundaries or name of any State or States which has been
referred to them under the proviso to Article 3. However, this referral does not restrict Parliament’s
power to make any further amendments of the Bill.Article 169 (1) reads, “Notwithstanding
anything in article 168, Parliament may by law provide for the abolition of the Legislative
Council of a State having such a Council or for the creation of such a Council in a State
having no such Council, if the Legislative Assembly of the State passes a resolution
to that effect by a majority of the total membership of the Assembly and by a majority
of not less than two-thirds of the members of the Assembly present and voting.” The proviso of article 3 provides that no
bill for the purpose shall be introduced in either House of Parliament except on the recommendation
of the President and unless, where the proposal contained in the Bill affects the area, boundaries
or name of any of the States, the bill has been referred by the President to the Legislature
of the State for expressing its views thereon within such period as may be specified in
the reference or within such further period as the President may allow and the period
so specified or allowed has expired.===Role of Union territories===
Union territories have no say in constitutional amendments, including the ratification process
which is only open to States. Delhi and Puducherry are two union territories
that are entitled, by special constitutional amendments, to have an elected Legislative
Assembly and a Cabinet of ministers, thereby enjoying partial statehood powers. Both of these territories can participate
in the ratification process.==Limitations==The Constitution can be amended any number
of times by the Parliament; but only in the manner provided. There is no such limit provided in the constitution
of India which allows it to enact only certain number of amendments in a year. In other words, Parliament is free to enact
any number of constitutional amendment in any given year. Although Parliament must preserve the basic
framework of the Constitution, there is no other limitation placed upon the amending
power, meaning that there is no provision of the Constitution that cannot be amended. In Abdul Rahiman Jamaluddin v. Vithal Arjun
(AIR 1958 Bombay, 94, (1957)), the Bombay High Court held that any attempt to amend
the Constitution by a Legislature other than Parliament, and in a manner different from
that provided for, will be void and inoperative.The Supreme Court first struck down a constitutional
amendment in 1967, ruling in the case of I.C. Golak Nath and Ors. vs. State of Punjab and
Anr. An amendment was struck down on the basis
that it violated Article 13: “The State shall not make any law which takes away or abridges
the rights conferred by [the charter of Fundamental Rights]”. The term “law” in this article was interpreted
as including a constitutional amendment. Parliament responded by enacting the twenty-fourth
Amendment of the Constitution of India which declared that “nothing in Article 13 shall
apply to any amendment of this Constitution”. The current limitation on amendments comes
from Kesavananda Bharati v. The State of Kerala, where the Supreme Court ruled that amendments
of the constitution must respect the “basic structure” of the constitution, and certain
fundamental features of the constitution cannot be altered by amendment. Parliament attempted to remove this limitation
by enacting the Forty-second Amendment, which declared, among other provisions, that “there
shall be no limitation whatever on the constituent power of Parliament to amend
…this Constitution”. However, this change was itself later declared
invalid by the Supreme Court in Minerva Mills v. Union of India. The issue of whether an entire constitutional
amendment is void for want of ratification or only an amended provision required to be
ratified under proviso to clause (2) of article 368 was debated before the Supreme Court in
Kihota Hollohon v. Zachilhu (AIR 1993 SC 412), in which the constitutional validity of the
Tenth Schedule of the Constitution inserted by the 52nd Amendment in 1985 was challenged. The decisions of the Speakers/Chairmen on
disqualification, which had been challenged in different High Courts through different
petitions, were heard by a five-member Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court. The case, now popularly known as Anti-Defection
case, was decided in 1992. The Constitution Bench in its majority judgement
upheld the validity of the Tenth Schedule, but declared Paragraph 7 of the Schedule invalid
because it was not ratified by the required number of the Legislatures of the States as
it brought about in terms and effect, a change in articles 136, 226 and 227 of the Constitution. While doing so, the majority treated Paragraph
7 as a severable part from the rest of the Schedule. However, in the dissenting opinion, the minority
of the Judges held that the entire Amendment is invalid for want of ratification.==Parts frequently amended==Despite the super majority requirement in
the Constitution, it is one of the most frequently amended governing documents in the world,
and the most amended national constitution in the world; amendments have averaged about
two a year. This is partly because the Constitution is
so specific in spelling out government powers that amendments are often required to deal
with matters that could be addressed by ordinary statutes in other democracies. As a result, it is the longest constitution
of any sovereign nation in the world. It currently consists of over 117,000 words
(450 articles plus 115 amendments). Another reason is that the Parliament of India
is elected by means of single seat districts, under the plurality voting system, used in
the United Kingdom and the United States. This means that, it is possible for a party
to win two thirds of the seats in Parliament without securing two thirds of the vote. For example, in the first two Lok Sabha elections
held under the Constitution, the Indian National Congress party won less than one half of the
national vote but roughly two thirds of seats in the chamber.===Fundamental Rights===
The most important and frequent reason for amendments to the Constitution is the curtailment
of the Fundamental Rights charter. This is achieved by inserting laws contrary
to the fundamental rights provisions into Schedule 9 of the Constitution. Schedule 9 protects such laws from judicial
review. The typical areas of restriction include laws
relating to property rights, and affirmative action in favour of minority groups such as
the “scheduled castes”, “scheduled tribes”, and other “backward classes” and also lower
classes people. In a landmark ruling in January 2007, a nine
judge constitutional bench of the Supreme Court of India confirmed that all laws (including
those in Schedule 9) would be open to judicial review if they violate the “basic structure
of the constitution”. Chief Justice Yogesh Kumar Sabharwal noted,
“If laws put in the Ninth Schedule abridge or abrogate fundamental rights resulting in
violation of the basic structure of the constitution, such laws need to be invalidated”.===Territorial changes===
Constitutional amendments have been made to facilitate changes in the territorial extent
of the Republic of India due to the incorporation of the former French colony of Pondicherry,
the former Portuguese colony of Goa, and a minor exchange of territory with Pakistan. Amendments are also necessary with regard
to littoral rights over the exclusive economic zone of 200 mi and the formation of new states
and union territories by the reorganization of existing states. Constitutional amendment under article 368
allows peaceful division of the country provided fundamental rights (Article 13) are ensured
in all the resultant countries. The constitution (ninth amendment) act, 1960
is an example which has ceded territory to old Pakistan.===Transitional provisions===
The constitution includes transitional provisions intended to remain in force only for a limited
period. These need to be renewed periodically. For example, for continuing reservation in
parliamentary seats for scheduled castes and scheduled tribes an constitutional amendment
is enacted once in every ten years.===Democratic reform===
Amendments have been made with the intent of reform the system of government and incorporating
new “checks and balances” in the Constitution. These have included the following: Creation of the National Commission for Scheduled
Castes. Creation of the National Commission for Scheduled
Tribes. Creation of mechanisms for Panchayati Raj
(local self governance). Disqualification of members from changing
party allegiance. Restrictions on the size of the cabinet. Restrictions on imposition of an internal
emergency.==See also==
List of amendments of the Constitution of India

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