UNION AND ITS TERRITORIES

by | Aug 24, 2023

Part 1 of the Indian Constitution, encompassing Articles 1 to 4, pertains to the concept of the Union and its territories. Despite India’s federal constitutional framework, it is referred to as a “Union of States” rather than a “Federation of States.” Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, who provided the rationale for this choice, highlighted that the Indian Federation differs from the American Federation since it didn’t arise from state agreements and doesn’t grant states the right to secede from the union.

Article 1 of the Indian Constitution establishes India as a union of states, addressing the nation’s name and governance.

Article 1(2) requires states and territories in the First Schedule.

Article 1(3) defines India’s territory, including state territories, union territories, and future acquisitions.

India is a ‘Union’ despite federal structure, preventing state secession.

The division aids governance for the diverse population.

‘Union of India’ includes all states.

‘Territory of India’ includes states, union territories, and future acquisitions.

Article 2 of the Indian Constitution grants Parliament the authority to include or create new states within the Union of India. Parliament determines the terms for such inclusions or establishments. The article confers two powers upon Parliament:

  1. The power to admit states already within the union.
  2. The power to establish entirely new states that didn’t exist before.

Article 2A: Sikkim’s Union Association [Repealed]

Sikkim’s integration with the Indian Union occurred after its people voted through a plebiscite in 1975. Previously an independent monarchy, Sikkim became an Indian state. The Thirty-Fifth Amendment Act of 1974 added this Article, but it was later repealed by the Thirty-Sixth Amendment Act of 1975.

Article 3 of the Indian Constitution empowers Parliament with these authorities:

  1. Form new states from existing ones (e.g., Telangana, Uttarakhand).
  2. Increase or reduce state area.
  3. Alter state boundaries.
  4. Change state names.
  5. Combine parts of states/union territories for new states.

Two prerequisites exist for such changes:

  1. President’s Recommendation: Requires President’s prior approval to introduce the bill.
  2. State Legislature Input: State’s view sought, yet non-binding; President or Parliament can disregard it. No re-reference needed for bill modifications. Union territories with legislatures (currently Delhi and Puducherry) don’t require their view.

Parliamentary legislation trumps state territorial integrity, prioritising India’s unity over state integrity. E.g., Jammu and Kashmir reorganisation for Ladakh’s governance needs.

States can change, but India’s unity remains unwavering.

Article 4 of the Indian Constitution has two facets:

  1. Laws under Article 2 or Article 3 must include changes to the 1st and 4th Schedules.
  2. Such laws aren’t seen as amendments under Article 368.

Written By Vishakha Khatri

My name is Vishakha Khatri. I am an engineering graduate and a civil service aspirant with a passion for spreading knowledge about Indian polity. I believe that understanding our political system is crucial for every citizen, and I am committed to making this information accessible to everyone in my own easy way. Through my experiences in civil service preparation and my unique perspective as an engineering graduate, I hope to inspire and educate others on the importance of Indian polity.

Related Posts

Directive Principle of State Policy

Directive Principle of State Policy

Enshrined in Part IV (Article 36–51), the DPSP reflects the vision of the Constitution's makers who recognized the challenges of post-colonial India, marked...

ARTICLE 25-28

ARTICLE 25-28

Harmony in Diversity: Unveiling the Essence of Articles 25-28 of the Indian Constitution India, a tapestry of diverse cultures and religions, places a premium...