Genesis of idea of federalism in India was first traced in Simon Commission, “Indian Statutory Commission” appointed in 1927. The Commission was meant for revision of the Constitution for India. In its report in 1930, the Commission recommended the evolution of India into “a federation of self-governing units”.
Federalism in the modern Age is a principle of reconciliation between two divergent tendencies, viz., the need for local autonomy and the widening range of common interests – Lord Acton
Indian federalism is unique
– Unity while permitting diversity,
– oneness, while providing for division,
– a modern federalism
Federalism removes friction, stops disintegration, suppresses jealousy, checks wars, and creates powerful and peace-loving nations out of a heterogeneous mass of human beings living apart and in different parts of the world.
Most remarkable feature of the Indian Constitution is its federal structure, together with a form of unitary government with a dual polity and a single set of rights and obligations. According to Basu, “Indian Constitution is partly rigid and largely flexible”.
Comparison with US:
US Constitution has dual citizenship, dual constitution, an independent though non-singular judiciary and equal representation of states in US Congress, while India has single constitution, judiciary, citizenship, and unequal representation of states in Rajya Sabha. Procedure to amend Constitution in simpler in India than US (2/3th states ratification). Indian states are destructible, while USA has indestructible states.
Comparison with Germany:
German federalism evolved as a model in its own right, neither following the American plural nor the British parliamentary tradition. Unlike Indian Constitutions, which adopted Position of President, impeachment procedures, Federal structure from US and Bicameralism, single Citizenship, etc. from British. German Constitution is the direct participation of regional governments in the federal process of legislation, while India ignores units only Special Amendment needs states ratification.
Related Questions:
  1. Did the Government of India Act, 1935 lay down a federal constitution? Discuss. (UPSC Mains 2016)
  2. Explain the key ideas and concepts associated with federalism. Examine how India’s federal set up is different from that of America’s and Germany’s. (200 Words)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top