‘Secular’, ‘socialist’ missing from Preamble in new copies of Constitution: Congress

Indian Constitution
Representational image of the Indian Constitution's Preamble. Photo: 2021 WESTOCK PRODUCTIONS/Shutterstock

New Delhi: The Congress on Tuesday lashed out at the Bharatiya Janata Party for distributing copies of the Constitution without the words 'secular' and 'socialist' in the Preamble.

"The new copies of the Constitution that were given to us today (19th September), the one we held in our hands and entered (the new Parliament building), its Preamble doesn't have the words 'socialist secular'," Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury told news agency ANI.

"We know that the words were added after an amendment in 1976 but if someone gives us the Constitution today and it doesn't have those words, it is a matter of concern...Their intention is suspicious. It has been done cleverly. It is a matter of concern for me. I tried to raise this issue but I did not get an opportunity to raise this issue," he added.

The two words 'secular' and 'socialist' were originally not part of the Preamble and were added to it in the 42nd Amendment in December 1976.

Chowdhury on Tuesday read out the Preamble of the Constitution in the new Parliament building.

"This Constitution is no less than Gita, Quran and Bible for us," he said.

"Article 1 says, India, that is Bharat, shall be a union of states. It means that there is no difference between India and Bharat. It will be better if nobody tries to unnecessarily create a rift between the two," he added.

In a historic transition, the Parliament moved into a swanky new complex on Tuesday. Bidding goodbye to the adjacent colonial era Parliament building, the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha met for the first time in the new home on the second day of the five-day special session.

The copies of the Constitution were distributed to the Members of the Parliament as part of the first meeting in the new building.

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