(Online Cours) CAPF Assistant Commandant: Indian Polity - The Union and Its Territory

Online Course for Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) Exam (Assistant Commandant)

Indian Polity

The Union and Its Territory

Part I of the Indian Constitution comprises four Articles concerned with the territory of India. Article 1 stipulates that India, that is Bharat, shall be a Union of States. The States and territories of India are to be specified in the First Schedule. It is to be noted that the expression, ‘Union of India’ includes only the states which are members of the federal system and share a distribution of powers with the Union while the ‘territory of India’ includes the entire area over which the sovereignty of India extends.

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The Indian federation was not the result of an agreement between independent States. By the Indian Independence Act 1947, the principal states were given the option of joining India or Pakistan or remaining independent. The integration of the princely states was managed well by Sardar Patel. It may be recalled that in the original Constitution there were four categories of States and Territories - part A which included the nine erstwhile provinces of British India, Part B comprising the five Princely States with legislatures, Part C which includes five centrally administered states, and Part D mentioning the territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. But since the Seventh Amendment Act, 1956, all the States (except for Jammu & Kashmir) belong to one class and all the constitutional provisions relating the states apply to all of them in the same manner. However, it may be pointed out in this connection that certain special provisions applicable to Maharashtra, Gujarat,, Nagaland, Assam, Manipur, Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Goa override the general provisions pertaining to the States as a class. As for the administration of certain Scheduled Areas and Tribal Areas within the States, the provisions are specially listed in the Fifth and Sixth Schedules.

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