NCERT Solutions for Class 11th: Ch 1 Constitution: Why and How? Political Science

NCERT Solutions for Class 11th: Ch 1 Constitution: Why and How? Indian Constitution At Work Political Science

Page No: 23

Exercises

1. Which of these is not a function of the constitution?
a. It gives a guarantee of the rights of the citizen.
b. It marks out different spheres of power for different branches of government.
c. It ensures that good people come to power.
d. It gives expression to some shared values.
► c. It ensures that good people come to power.

2. Which of the following is a good reason to conclude that the authority of the constitution is higher than that of the parliament?
a. The constitution was framed before the parliament came into being.
b. The constitution makers were more eminent leaders than the members of the parliament.
c. The constitution specifies how parliament is to be formed and what are its powers.
d. The constitution cannot be amended by the parliament.
► c. The constitution specifies how parliament is to be formed and what are its powers.

Page No: 24

3. State whether the following statements about a constitution are True or False.

a. Constitutions are written documents about formation and power of the government.
► True

b. Constitutions exist and are required only in democratic countries.
► False

c. Constitution is a legal document that does not deal with ideals and values.
► False

d. A constitution gives its citizens a new identity.
► True

4. State whether the following inferences about the making of the Indian Constitution are Correct or Incorrect. Give reasons to support your answer.

a. The Constituent Assembly did not represent the Indian people since it was not elected by all citizens.
► Incorrect, because the members of Constituent Assembly were chosen by indirect election by the members of the Provincial Legislative Assemblies that had been established under the Government of India Act, 1935 also every province, religious groups and community were given equal representation in this assembly.

b. Constitution making did not involve any major decision since there was a general consensus among the leaders at that time about its basic framework.
► Incorrect, because the members not agreed with each other on many things. Each particular provisions of the Constitution were subjected to debate by the entire Assembly.

c. There was little originality in the Constitution, for much of it was borrowed from other countries.
► Correct, because many provisions were adapted from constitutions of different countries like Britain, France, USA, Canada etc.

5. Give two examples each to support the following conclusions about the Indian Constitution:
a. The Constitution was made by credible leaders who commanded peoples’ respect.
b. The Constitution has distributed power in such a way as to make it difficult to subvert it.
c. The Constitution is the locus of people’s hopes and aspirations.

Answer

a. The Constitution was made by credible leaders who commanded peoples’ respect.
• The members of Constituent Assembly have people from all sections and religions of society. Its members were chosen by indirect election by the members of the Provincial Legislative Assemblies that had been established under the Government of India Act, 1935.
• The constituent assembly also have members such as Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Patel, Rajendra Prasad, Ambedkar etc. which were part of national movement and also credible leaders.

b. The Constitution has distributed power in such a way as to make it difficult to subvert it.
• The Indian Constitution horizontally fragments power across different institutions like the Legislature, Executive and the Judiciary and even independent statutory bodies like the Election Commission.
• It strike the right balance between certain values, norms and procedures as authoritative, and at the same time allow enough flexibility in its operations to adapt to changing needs and circumstances as too rigid a constitution is likely to break under the weight of change whereas too flexible, will give no security, predictability or identity to a people.

c. The Constitution is the locus of people’s hopes and aspirations.
• The Indian Constitution drew upon a long history of the nationalist movement that had a remarkable ability to take along different sections of Indian society together.
• The many provisions ensures institutional expression to fundamental commitments equality, liberty, democracy, sovereignty and a cosmopolitan identity.

6. Why is it necessary for a country to have a clear demarcation of powers and responsibilities in the constitution? What would happen in the absence of such a demarcation?

Answer

It is necessary for a country to have a clear demarcation of powers and responsibilities in the constitution because it allows different institutions to work efficiently without any confusion without any interference or overlapping of power and responsibilities.
In the absence of such demarcation there is always chances of clash regarding exercising of power between the various institutions that derive their power from the constitution and ultimately subvert it.

7. Why is it necessary for a constitution to place limitations on the rulers? Can there be a constitution that gives no power at all to the citizens?

Answer

It is necessary for a constitution to place place limitations on the rulers because in the absence of this the government may pass a law which violates certain specified fundamental rights that all of us possess as citizens.
No, there cannot be a constitution that gives no power at all to the citizens because any authority cannot exist without citizens.

8. The Japanese Constitution was made when the US occupation army was still in control of Japan after its defeat in the Second World War. The Japanese constitution could not have had any provision that the US government did not like. Do you see any problem in this way of making the constitution? In which way was the Indian experience different from this?

Answer

Yes, Japanese constitution did not represent the view of its citizens. The constitutions is forcedly imposed on them so there is no any provision which represent the goals and aspirations of the Japanese people. The constitution was made by the will of external country it compromises on the sovereignty of the country.
The Indian experience is very different from this because the constitution reflects the ideologies that were influenced by nationalist movement.  It was framed by Constituent Assembly which have members elected indirectly by the members of the Provincial Legislative Assemblies. It represents the voice of nation and have sovereign character.

Page No: 25

9.  Rajat asked his teacher this question: “The constitution is a fifty year old and therefore outdated book. No one took my consent for implementing it. It is written in such tough language that I cannot understand it. Tell me why should I obey this document?” If you were the teacher, how would you answer Rajat?

Answer

The Constitution is not an outdated book as it accepts the required changes to keeps updated with requirements of the changing times. The amendment in the provision of constitution made time to time but according to rigid law so that no one can alter it for their own interest.

The language of Indian constitution is elaborative. Its vast size and also inclusion of some legal languages stands it as tough. However, it is written in too detailed manner clearing all confusion that may come.

The Indian constitution is a body fundamental principles according to which India is governed. It provides democratic form of government in India. It grants fundamental rights and privileges to all its citizens. It lay down th basic ideals of secularism, equality and fraternity. It is very necessary for smooth functioning and working of various institutions and also maintains stability. Therefore, we should obey this document.

10. In a discussion on the experience of the working of our Constitution, three speakers took three different positions:
a. Harbans: The Indian Constitution has succeeded in giving us a framework of democratic government.
b. Neha: The Constitution made solemn promises of ensuring liberty, equality and fraternity. Since this has not happened, the Constitution has failed.
c. Nazima: The Constitution has not failed us. We have failed the Constitution.
Do you agree with any of these positions? If yes, why? If not, what is your own position?

Answer

Yes, I agree with Nazima's view. The constitution has effective principles for proper governance of country. However, the people who are responsible for execution and implementation of the principles have failed to do so because of their own interest. It is all about welfare of citizens and giving equal oppurtunities to all but without thinking of welfare of the nation they using it for their profit. Therefore, the constitution has not failed us but we failed the constitution.

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