What is the significance of a preamble to a constitution of India?

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By preamble is meant a preliminary or introductory statement in speech or writing. The preamble of a statute which generally follows the long title and precedes the purview is a perfunctory explanation or statement in general terms stating the reason or occasion for making the statute and the object or policy which it is designed to achieve.

The Preamble like the long title is a part of statute and is an admissible aid to its construction. The preamble, however, is of not that importance as the Preview or enacting words of a statute. So the preamble expresses the political, moral, economic and religious values which a constitution is committed to promote. If there is a doubt as to the meaning of the enacting words, the Preamble by showing the object or purpose of the act helps in the selection of the true meaning.

The ideals embodied in the constitution of India are faithfully reflected in the Preamble. The judiciously chosen words in the Preamble are of immense value and importance.
i. The constitution gives the power of governance to the people of the country. India is free from foreign rule and is declared by the Preamble as a socialist, secular, democratic republic.
ii. ‘Socialism’ here means the state’s commitment to socioeconomic justice. And ‘secularism’ means that the state will protect every religion but it will not have any religious foundation.
iii. Democratic Republic’ means more than political democracy. With democracy in political process it envisages a democratic society, too. The democratic polity and society will be infused with the spirit of justice, liberty, equality and fraternity. ‘Republic’ implies that the head of the Indian state shall neither be hereditary nor a dictator.
iv. Justice, social, economic and political are included in the Preamble and thereby ensured in the constitution through different provisions. Two phrases, ‘dignity of the individual’ and ‘unity and integrity of the nation’ also find place in the Preamble.

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