Basics of Indian Polity Notes


  • Supreme law of the land.
  • It is a rulebook which regulates the society and its laws.
  • All laws and customs are inferior to it.
  • It lays down the basic structure of the political system (Legislative, Executive and Judiciary) under which the state and its people are to be governed and also defines their power and demarcates their responsibilities.
  • It is a legal document which is the fundamental law of the nation having a special sancity.
  • It is a living organism which keeps constantly evolving and growing.


  • “ism” denotes system, theory or ideology. 
  • It advocates for establishment and adherence to constitution as fundamental law of the land.
  • It is specific limitations on general State powers to prevent the exercise of arbitrary decision-making.
  • Power of government is not unlimited, unchecked, and arbitrary and is bound by limitations, rules, rights, checks, etc.
  • Its idea includes principles of democratic government, limited government, Independent & Impartial Judiciary and the rule of law.
  • It prohibits the unreasonable and arbitrary exercise of power by the State.
  • It forces State to remain within the bounds of a Constitution which is written or unwritten.
  • Supreme Court has played a crucial role in upholding principles of Constitutionalism. Some cases:
    •  Rameshwar Prasad vs Union of India Case: Constitutionalism limits the absolute power of the government and is based on rule of law.
    • IR Coelho vs State of Tamil Nadu: Principle of Constitutionalism is a legal principle that requires to control the authority of the government to protect the rights of the people.

Limited Government

  • Power of the government and its exercise is limited by the law usually Constitution. It checks the unreasonable and arbitrary decisions of the government. India is constitutionally limited government. 
  • It can be seen as the practically usage of the concept of Constitutionalism.

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