Beyond Legalese
Beyond Legalese

The Constitution of India is the cornerstone of the country's legal and political framework. It embodies the ideals and principles that guide the Government. While discussions on the Constitution are often relegated to academic and policy debates, it is essential to understand its impact on the everyday lives of ordinary citizens—the Aam Aadmi. In this compendium, we uncover the thoughts and experiences of people living under the Constitution of India. 

Our journey begins at the Preamble. The ideals of socialism and welfare lay the foundation for our exploration. Conversations with citizens reveal a shift in sentiment, away from dependency on the State and towards self-sufficiency and empowerment.

As we continue our exploration, we delve into the complex world of rights and hierarchies within the Constitution. We question whether citizens prioritise rights as the Constitution does, unearthing a significant variance. For instance, citizens strongly value the Right to Property—a right relegated from a Fundamental Right to a constitutional right in 1978.

Moving forward, we focus on the Right to Education, a Fundamental Right created by the 86th Constitutional Amendment. We explore how parents perceive the Government's role in fulfilling this right. The conversations highlight a preference for private educational services and an openness to government financing as an alternative to government provisioning.

We then look at rural India, where we engage with farmers and their perspectives on the Ninth Schedule. Designed to protect farmers, it has resulted in several unintended consequences. Farmers desire more freedom and face challenges from restrictions meant to safeguard their interests.

Our final destination is Delhi, the bustling capital with over 35 million residents. Here, we explore urban governance and citizens' growing reliance on private alternatives for essential services listed in the Twelfth Schedule. This shift underscores the urgency for reform, transparency, strengthened accountability mechanisms, and the possibility of introducing options like outsourcing certain public services to the private sector.

The compendium explores the perspectives of Indian citizens about the principles and ideas enshrined in the Constitution. It reflects the evolving aspirations, expectations, and perspectives of the people. It emphasises the need for open dialogue, comprehensive reform, and governance in tune with the pulse of the citizenry. The Constitution is not just a legal document; it is a living framework intertwined with the dreams and aspirations of a diverse and vibrant nation.



Download chapters from the compendium