M. N. Roy first put forth the idea of a Constituent Assembly. Congress demanded it officially in 1935. The demand was met in principle in August Offer, 1940. Cripps proposal for constituent assembly was rejected as Muslim league wanted two separate constituent assemblies.

However the Cabinet Mission plans of a single constituent assembly was accepted by congress and Muslim league.


Interim Government

This was the executive council of viceroy. Viceroy was the head and J Nehru was the Vice-president as he was head of the interim government.

Composition of the constituent assembly

Members of the constituent assembly came from provincial assembly [direct election, communal representation], princely state [nominated by princes].

Princely states did not send members to the constituent assembly. Sachindanand Sinha was elected as temporary president of the constituent assembly. Later, Rajendra Prasad and HC Mukherjee became President and vice president of the assembly.

Objective resolution by Nehru was adopted unanimously and later was modified and adopted as the preamble. By 42nd amendment secular, socialist and integrity were added.

Members of the princely states and Muslim league [ML] gradually participated in the assembly but ML members left after the Indian independence act, 1947. The constituent assembly adopted national flag, anthem, song, accepted membership to the commonwealth and elected Rajendra prasad as first president of India. The constituent assembly continued as the provincial parliament of India till the general elections.

Constitution Drafting committee: 

Drafting committee of the constitution consisted of seven members: BR Ambedkar [chairman], Aiyar, Ayyangar, Madhav Rau [replaced BL Mitter], Saadullah, KM Munshi and TT Krishnamachari [replaced Khaitan].


Features of the constitution

Constitution was adopted on 26 November 1949; some provisions came into effect on same day. Other provisions are enforced from 26 Jan 1950 “date of commencement”. This day was chosen as it was the Purna Swaraj day, currently the republic day. BR Ambedkar was the father of the constitution.

Criticism of constituent assembly:

  1. Not a representative body [no direct election]
  2. Not a sovereign body [created under British government]
  3. Dominated by congress
  4. Time consuming
  5. Hindu dominated
  6. Lawyer-Politician dominated.

Q. Democracy’s superior virtue lies in the fact that it calls into activity (UPSC CSAT-2017)

  1. the intelligence and character of ordinary men and women

  2. the methods for strengthening executive leadership.

  3. a superior individual with dynamism and vision.

  4. a band of dedicated party workers

Ans . A

  1. It is the decision of people that creates a democratic government and decides about its functioning.

Q. One of the implications of equality in society is the absence of (UPSC CSAT-2017)

  1. Privileges

  2. Restraints

  3. Competition

  4. Ideology

Ans . A

  1. First step towards bringing about equality is of course ending the formal system of inequality and privileges.


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