T C A Srinivasa-Raghavan: Economists and the Constitution | Business Standard Column

T C A Srinivasa-Raghavan: Economists and the Constitution | Business Standard Column


September 5, 2015
Reading statutes
This refers
to T C A Srinivasa-Raghavan’s article “Economists and the Constitution” (Line
and Length, September 5). Enjoyed reading the article on Teachers’ Day, 2015.
If the question whether they had read the statutes they were recommending
repeal/replacement, to some members of the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms
Commission, one wonders how embarrassed the person who asked the question would
have felt, if they chose to answer ‘honestly’. These are beside the point.
The basic
question raised in the article needs deeper analysis. The Preamble of the
Indian Constitution announces that ‘WE THE PEOPLE’ gave the Constitution to
‘THEMSELVES’ (the word used is ‘OURSELVES’). Any amendment to the Constitution,
therefore, should reflect the mood of ‘WE THE PEOPLE’. Else, it will fall on
the way! So, the short question is, do we want Article 19(1) (C) to survive?
Article 19 reads:
 19. Protection of certain rights regarding
freedom of speech etc
(1) All
citizens shall have the right
(a) to
freedom of speech and expression;
(b) to
assemble peaceably and without arms;
(c) to
form associations or unions;
(d) to
move freely throughout the territory of India;
(e) to
reside and settle in any part of the territory of India; and
(f) omitted
(g) to
practise any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business

Now that the perception that ‘Article
19(1)(C) of the Constitution guarantees a right that is holding back rapid
industrialisation’ has been expressed in so many words, let us debate the
relevance of the entire Article 19(1) in the changed context. Perhaps, a repeal
of the entire Article 19(1) may promote rapid industrialisation and
establishment of a society which H G Wells talked about. That society will have
only two classes of people. One above the ground, and another below the ground!
M G Warrier, Mumbai


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