The Preamble to the Indian Constitution enumerates the ideals and ambitions of the Indian people, which have been incorporated into the Constitution's many clauses. The term "preamble" refers to the introduction to a statute.
As opined in the Keshavananda Bharati case as well as in the LIC of India case, Preamble is an integral part of the Constitution.
A preamble is neither a source of power to legislature nor a prohibition upon the powers of the legislature.
It is non justiciable.
It can be amended.
The preamble was enacted by the assembly after the rest of the Constitution was drafted, to ensure that its provisions run in conformity with that of the essence and spirit of the Constitution.
Important Constituents of 'Preamble'
Ambedkar laid great stress on the fraternity. “Fraternity,” he said, “means a sense of common brotherhood of all Indians—if Indians are seen as being one people.1 It is the principle which gives unity and solidarity to social life.” He was convinced that “without fraternity, equality and liberty will be no deeper than a coat of paint.”
The preamble of the constitution of India professes to secure to all its citizens political, economic and social justice. Social justice means the abolition of all sorts of inequities that may result from the inequalities of wealth, opportunity, status, race, religion, caste, title and the like. To achieve this ideal of social justice, the constitution lays down the directives for the state in Part IV of the constitution.
The expression ‘economic justice’ means justice from the standpoint of economic force. In short, it means equal pay for equal work, that every person should get his just dues for his labour irrespective of his caste, sex or social status.
Political justice means the absence of any unreasonable or arbitrary distinction among men in political matters. The constitution has adopted the system of universal adult suffrage, to secure political justice.
The term ‘socialist’ literally means a political-economic system that advocates the state’s ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange. The term ‘socialist’ has not been defined in the constitution. According to Supreme Court, the principle aim of socialism is to eliminate inequality of income and standard of life and to provide a decent standard of living to work people. Democratic socialism aims to end poverty, inequality of income.
A republic means a form of government in which the head of the state is an elected person and not a heredity monarch like the king or the queen in Great Britain. Under such a system, political sovereignty is vested in the people and the head of the state is the person elected by the people for a fixed term.
India’s idea of secularism is not only about tolerance but acceptance as well. The state does not accord the status of official religion to any faith. All religions are allowed to flourish. India is a beautiful ’mosaic’ not merely a ’melting pot of identities. The state maintains equidistance from all religions.
The high objective was to convert a society fragmented on the lines of religion, caste and economic status into a homogenous society, secure to all the citizens, equality of status and of opportunity and to promote among them all eternity assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the nation.
The sovereign or supreme power is that which is absolute and uncontrolled within its own sphere’. In the words of Cooley, “A state is sovereign when there resides within itself supreme and absolute power, acknowledging no superior”.
It is based on the doctrine of popular sovereignty, the real power lies in the will of the people. The Indian constitution majorly denotes not only political democracy but takes within its fold the idea of socio-economic democracy.
It simply means the absence of restraints but framers of our constitution did not only embrace negative liberty but also took into account the idea of positive liberty. The state by ensuring the education and health needs of individuals is attempting to enhance individuals capability to actualise their potential.
The preamble is based on ‘objective resolution’ drafted and moved by Pandit Nehru. It contains the aspirations of the founding fathers of the Constitution. It embodies the core values and principles of our polity.
Pandit Thakur Das Bhargava opined that "The Preamble is the most precious part of the Constitution. It is the soul of the Constitution. It is a key to the Constitution. It is a proper yardstick with which one can measure the worth of the Constitution. All the 395 articles of the Constitution have to be measured with the yardstick of the Preamble and such provisions as stand the test of the Preamble are good and others should be taken as worthless"