BY JUSTICE D. V.R.S.G. DATTATREYULU

The Indian Constitution is based on the noble ideas that are mentioned in the Preamble of the Constitution. The main and guiding principle in the Constitution is to be interpreted and understood in the light of Preamble of the Constitution. The Preamble reads as follows:

“WE THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVERIGN, SOCIALIST, SECULAR, DEMOCRATI C REPUBLIC and to secure to all citizens: JUSTICE, social, economic, and political; LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;

EQUALITY, of status and opportunity; and to promote among them all PRATERNITY, assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation; IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this twenty-sixth day of November, 1949, do HERE BY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVELS THIS CONSTITUTION.”


Keeping these principles as guiding principles of Indian Nation, one has to understand what would be the philosophy- formulation, interpretation, and administration of this Nation. It is pertinent to note that the framers of our Constitution have qualified India as –that is Bharat. It is necessary to go into the constitutional history by understanding the debates in the Constituent Assembly. If the Constituent Assembly considered this country as India, to qualify the same as Bharat is of no significance. But the constitutional framers have made the world understand in an uncertain language that India is Bharath . Therefore, the essence of this country is the reflection of specific culture, content, and ultimate goal of the citizens of this Nation in consonance with the ideal as envisaged in the Nation as Bharath. The necessity of qualifying India as Bharat is the result of the successive rule of this country by alien powers and imperial powers. The ultimate goals of the rulers prior to the present Constitution are not similar to the objects of this country, i.e Bharat. In Bharat, the way of life is modelled on the principles of Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha. The inbuilt structure of this Nation is materialistic achievement coupled with spiritual salvation. This is the backdrop on which one has to consider the subject now posed.


Nationalism according to legal dictionary is:

Nation: (1) “ A large group of people having common origin, language, and tradition and using constituting a political entity. When a nation is coincident with a state, the term nation-state is often used-Also termed Nationality.” (2) “A community of people inhabiting a defined territory and organized under an independent government, a sovereign political state.” (Black 7 th Edn. 1999).

“The nearest we can get to a definition is to say that a nation is a group of people bound together by common history, common sentiment and traditions and, usually (though not always, for example, Belgium or Switzerland) by common heritage. A state, on the other hand, is a society of men united under one government. These two forums of society are not necessarily coincident. A single nation may be divided into several states or conversely a single state may comprise several nations or parts of nation.” (John Salmond, Jurisprudence 136, Glanville. Williams ed.10 th , 1947)

A body politic; a society of people united together for the purpose of promoting their mutual safety and advantage by the joint efforts of their combined strength. The inhabitants of a territory united under the same Government, and possessing an independent status as a whole. The word is generally but inaccurately used as a synonym of State. The word “nation”, has ordinarily used, presupposes or implies an independence of any other sovereign power more or less absolute, an organized government recognize officials, a system of laws, definite boundaries and the power to enter into negotiations with other nations.


Common to or characteristic of a whole nation. Concerning or administrated by a Nation State. One that owes permanent allegiance to a nation without regard to place of residence or to possession of a more formal status. [S.132,Trade and Merchandise Marks Act (43 of 1958)]: of or relating to a nation.

According to Oxford dictionary Nation is stated as follows: “Distinct race or people having common descent, language, history or political institutions.” (pg 785, 2 nd edition)

Therefore, in the concept of nationalism, Bharat is entirely one integrated unit as a Nation. There can’t be any kind of differentiation with regard to theory of Bharat as one Nation. This is the fundamental and basic feature of the Constitution.