Constitution : It is a set of principles that a state (nation) follows to administer itself. It contains the rights and duties of the citizens and also underlines the working of different parts of the government, i.e ., Executive Legislature and Judiciary.
Concurrent List : It refers to the list, which contains the subjects of governance on which both centre and states could make laws. For example, Health, Forest, etc.
Franchise : The right to vote in an election, especially political or for any law-making organisation.
Linguistic : Associated with language.
Mixed Economy : Mixed economy is an economic system having the features of both private sectors and state. In this model, both the state (government) and private sector play complementary role in the developmental process.
Non Alignment : The policy of remaining neutral with the superpowers of the world, namely, USA and Russia.
State : Associated with the government.
15th August 1947 : India attained independence.
30th January 1948 : Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated.
26th January 1950 : The Indian Constitution was adopted.
1950 : The government of India formed the Planning Commission.
1952 : The first five year plan was initiated.
1st October 1953 : The new state of Andhra Pradesh came into existence.
1955-1960 : Tension increased on Indo-China border.
1960 : The bilingual state of Bombay was divided on linguistic basis into Marathi and Gujarati speakers.
1965 and 1971 : Two Indo-Pak Wars.
1966 : Punjab and East Patiala states union was divided into Punjab and Haryana.
1970s : Many countries joined the Non Aligned Movement.
1971 : Bangladesh (east Pakistan) became a separate entity.
1999 : The Kargil conflict negatively affected Indo-Pak relations.
Features of the Indian Constitution
(i) Adoption of Universal Adult Franchise : It adopted universal adult franchise. According to this, Indians above the age of 18 were given the right to vote in state and national elections.(ii) Equality to All Citizens : It guaranteed equality before law to all citizens, regardless of their caste or religions. All the people from different religions would be given the same opportunities, when it come to seeking jobs in government or the private sector, and the same rights were also given to all the citizens before the law.
(iii) Granting Special Privilege to SCs and STs : It offered privileges for the poorest and most disadvantaged Indians.
(iv) Abolition of Untouchability : The practice of untouchability was abolished. The Hindu temples were open to all, including the untouchables.
(v) Reservation of Seats in Government Offices : Constituent Assembly recommended that a certain percentage of seats in legislatures as well as jobs in government should be reserved for members of the lowest castes.
The challenges faced by independent India were :
(1) Framing a new constitution for India.
(2) Integration of states into the Indian union.
(3) Planning for development of the nation (5 year plans).
(4) To develop an independent foreign policy for country.
The problems that the newly independent nation of India faced were :
(1) As a result of partition, 8 million refugees had come into the country from Pakistan. These people started looking for homes and jobs.
(2) Then there was the problem of princely states, almost 500 of them, each ruled by a maharaja or a nawab, each of whom had to be convinced to join the new nation.
(1) India’s population in 1947 was around 345 million. It was also divided between high castes and low castes, between majority Hindu community and Indians who practised different faiths.
(2) The citizens spoke different languages, different kinds of dress, ate different kinds of and practised different professions. It was to make them live together in the form of one state.
(1) At the time of independence, a vast majority of Indians lived in the villages, in which farmers and peasants depended on monsoon for their survival.
(2) In the cities, crowded slums were occupied by factory workers who had little access to education or healthcare.
(3) The new nation had to lift its masses out of poverty by increasing the productivity of agriculture and by promoting industries for creation of new job opportunities.
Second Five Year Plan
Second five-year plan was formulated in the year 1956. Following were its main features :
(1) It laid stress on the development of the heavy industries such as iron and steel industry and on the construction of large dams.
(2) The Planning Commission believed that industries should be encouraged for the cause development of the nation as they are regarded the backbone of an economy.
(3) Dams were required to supply electricity to industries and water to agricultural fields.
Mira Behn was one of the followers of Mahatma Gandhi. Second Five Year plan focused on the development of science and technology. It was opposed by Mira Behn. She was of the view that science and technology might give huge returns , but at the end , they will lead to despair as these developments would be done at the cost of nature. She said that we should frame our policies considering the laws of nature and should not disturb the natural balance.
Its main aim of second year plan was development of heavy industries such as iron and steel and on the building of large dams. The effort was centralised at the state for regulating the economic policy for the next few decades.
Universal adult Franchise
The adoption of universal adult franchise was considered a revolutionary step because never before had Indians been allowed to choose their own leaders.
India’s foreign Policy
(i) India gained freedom after the Second World War.
(ii) A new international body-The United Nations was formed in 1945.
(iii) At this time, colonial empires were collapsing and many countries were attaining independence.
(iv) Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who was also the foreign minister of India, developed free India’s foreign policy in this context.
(v) Non alignment formed the bedrock of this foreign policy.
(vi) This was also the period when the cold war emerged, that is, power rivalries and conflicts between the USA and USSR emerged and both countries were creating respective military alliances.
(vii) The non-aligned movement urged the countries not to join either of the two major alliance groups.
(viii) Non aligned countries such as India played an active role in mediating between the American and Soviet Alliances.
(ix) They tried to prevent war by taking humanitarian and moral stands.
Potti Sriramulu was a Gandhian leader in Andhra Pradesh. He went on a hunger strike demanding an independent state of Andhra Pradesh for the Telugu speaking people.On October 1,1953 , the new state of Andhra Pradesh came into being after the demise of Potti Sriramulu.
Role of States Reorganisation Commission
(i) After the formation of Andhra Pradesh on linguistic lines, other linguistic groups also started making similar demands. To address these demands, States Reorganization Commission was set up.
(ii) It submitted its report in 1956 and recommended the redrawing of provincial boundaries on linguistic basis.
(iii) Thus, people speaking Assamese, Bengali, Oriya, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada and Telugu, etc. were organised on the basis of their respective language.
(a) Industrial development. (b) In 1950, the Planning Commission was set up to help and design suitable politics for economic development. (c) In 1956, the Second Five Year Plan was formulated. (d) This plan focused strongly on the development of heavy industries such as iron and steel, and on the building of large dams. (e) These sectors would be under the control of the State.
(i) The Second World War ended in the year 1945. After the end of war, ideological differences emerged between the US and the USSR.
(ii) Both of them embarked upon increasing their influence on the newly independent countries. The entire world was divided into two armed camps.
(iii) It was the beginning of a cold war. Therefore, in the Bandung summit of the Afro-Asian countries, it was decided that they would not join any of the groups and would remain neutral and not align with any of the two powers.
Thus, Non-Alignment Movement, as named by Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, came into being. The main contributors to the Non-Alignment Movement were the representatives of India, Yugoslavia, Egypt, Ghana and Indonesia.
The Central and State governments confronted each other on the matter of sharing of power. The conflict was resolved by providing three lists of subjects : Union list, State list and Concurrent list. The subjects of governance were summarily divided in these lists.