Thank you for the Constitution
26th January marks the occasion of the coming into effect of the constitution of India. Dr. B. R. Ambedkar was the chairman of the Drafting Committee that gave us our constitution. The constitution of India happens to be the longest constitution of any sovereign country in the world, and it took the members of the Drafting Committee almost three years to complete the work.
Imagine what will happen if Dr. B. R. Ambedkar suddenly makes an appearance in 2022, particularly on this day when the country is celebrating the 73rd Republic Day. One simply cannot say what he would have thought of the political scenario of the present, but he would have been fascinated by the technological advancements that India has made. He would have particularly been pleased with the many gadgets and appliances which make people’s jobs quick and easy. These gadgets could make the monumental task of researching and writing the constitution so much easier.
Many of the ideals present in the constitution of other countries, such as the United Kingdom, United States, Australia, Japan, etc., found their way into the Constitution of India. The members of the Drafting Committee painstakingly went through various papers, understanding how other countries were functioning, and incorporating them as per India’s need. Imagine how wonderfully surprised Dr. B. R. Ambedkar and his team would've been today on realising that the world now is connected by the internet and getting all sorts of information (within the country and outside the country) is just a Google search away.
In the process of making the constitution, some members were in a different part of the country or of the world, and some could not attend the meetings to debate and deliberate the constitution due to health issues. Such a situation would not have been a problem if they could simply turn to their phones or laptops and easily connect over a Zoom call as the people of today do. Dr. B. R. Ambedkar would have appreciated the team member’s full participation!
During the ’40s, there were hardly any gadgets that could aid in the preparation of the constitution. For anybody venturing to write a document today, all that it takes are the clicks of a few buttons. Dr. B. R. Ambedkar of that time would have been pleasantly surprised today. He would not only talk to different politicians and policymakers using landlines or smartphones, but would also make video calls to happily interact with others. He could just ask Alexa or Google Assistant to schedule his appointments.
The herculean task of writing the longest constitution, the original of which was handwritten, could have been eased with the smooth keyboards of laptops and desktops today. Making corrections could have been so much easier, and sharing the document for each other’s feedback could become as uncomplicated as it gets.
When the committee members experienced the heat of summers, they had no AC or air cooler to turn on. When the debates became intensive, there were no refrigerators to store and relish some cold beverages.
During the wintertime, after a long, tiring day of debate and discussion, if the members of the drafting committee needed a refreshing hot shower, it is very unlikely that they could find instant geysers and other water heaters or room heaters which we have today.
Music has the power to soothe, but for listening to music, there were not many options during the 1940s. The good old gramophone and the radio were the only options. The world has changed, and the people of the 1940s would be surprised to see how versatile and compact devices today have become, allowing one to stay connected to music 24x7. If Nehru Ji had seen the expansive options of audio devices at that time, he would have, perhaps, recommended the Constituent Assembly to get headphones, earphones, Bluetooth speakers for each of the members!
Despite facing the deficiency of technology and many other challenges of that time, the Drafting Committee wrote the most detailed constitution of any country. As we commemorate the establishment of the constitution, we can only have gratitude in our hearts for Dr. B.R. Ambedkar and the drafting committee who took all the efforts to give us the constitution.