The Preamble of India is the introductory statement of the Constitution of India that outlines the fundamental principles and values upon which the Constitution is based.
The Preamble declares India to be a Sovereign, Socialist, Secular, Democratic, Republic, and aims to secure to all its citizens justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity.
The Preamble was adopted on November 26, 1949, by the Constituent Assembly of India, and came into effect on January 26, 1950, the day when the Constitution of India was officially enforced.
The 42nd Amendment Act of 1976, which added the words "Socialist," "Secular," and "Integrity" was the only amendment to the Preamble.
The Preamble has been interpreted by the Supreme Court of India as an integral part of the Constitution and as a valuable aid in the interpretation of the Constitution.
The case that established the Preamble as an integral part of the Indian Constitution and stated that it cannot be amended is the Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala case.
This landmark case was decided by the Supreme Court of India in 1973 and is considered one of the most important constitutional cases in Indian history.
In this case, the Supreme Court upheld the basic structure doctrine, which means that certain essential features of the Constitution cannot be altered by the Parliament through amendments.
The Court held that the Preamble is a part of the Constitution and that it reflects the basic structure of the Constitution. Therefore, any amendment that destroys or alters the basic structure of the Constitution would be unconstitutional.
The Court also held that while the Preamble is not enforceable in a court of law, it can be used as a guide to interpret the Constitution.
The Court stated that the Preamble is a key to open the mind of the Constitution and to gather the spirit of the Constitution. Hence, any amendment that seeks to alter the basic structure of the Constitution or the spirit of the Preamble would be struck down as unconstitutional.
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