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With reference to the making of the Indian Constitution explain the following:
i) When and how were the members of the Constituent Assembly elected?
ii) How was the membership of the Constituent Assembly reduced as a result of the partition of the country?

Last updated date: 21st Jul 2024
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Hint: The constitution of a country is a set of written rules according to which a State is governed within the framework of the legislature, the executive and the judiciary. The ‘Constituent Assembly’ is the Constitution-making body that framed the Indian Constitution.

Complete answer:
i) Under the Cabinet Mission plan of 1946, elections were held for the establishment of the Constituent Assembly. The members were elected indirectly, i.e., by the members of the provincial assemblies by means of a single, transferable vote system of equivalent representation. On December 9, 1946, the first session of the Constituent Assembly was held, presided by Dr. Sachidanand Sinha. On December 11, 1946, Dr. Rajendra Prasad was appointed as the permanent chairman of the Assembly.

ii) Due to the partition of the country, the membership of the Indian Constituent Assembly stood at 299 against the original number of 385 members. It was because soon after the partition, the country was divided into India and Pakistan. As a result, some of the members went to Pakistan and the number went down to 299. Out of this, 229 members were from the British provinces and 70 were appointed from the princely states of India.

Note: The Constitution of India is referred to as the “Fundamental Law of Land”, as it is superior to the ordinary laws of the State. Every law that violates any of the provisions of the Constitution is redundant. Laws are categorised into 3 types, namely Natural Laws, Statutory Laws and Constitutional Laws respectively.