[FLAME University :: Lecture Series] Constitution And Public Policy

CONSTITUTION AND PUBLIC POLICY: THE PRESENT CONTEXT

THE VISION

The constitution of India, the most indispensable law of the land, provides
the basic guidelines for the public policies in its formulation and
implementation stages. In the instances of conflict in the formulation and
implementation of the policies with regard to the breach of the fundamental
rights or any other provisions of the constitution. The constitution empowers
the Judiciary to adjudicate for consonance of the policy in accordance with the
constitution. Hence the integration of the constitution and public policy is to
be reviewed recurrently.

In the present time, we have witnessed formulation of some
of the most noteworthy rights-based public policies as a result of the
interpretation of the ‘Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles of State
Policies’ by the judiciary. We are also witnessing the lackadaisical execution
in some of the instances. In this regard the conflict and struggles of
implementation provides an important framework to be examined and
analysed.   

SESSION AT FLAME UNIVERSITY

There was an air of excitement, as students, faculty members
and staff of FLAME University gathered in large numbers for the lecture on the
‘Constitution and public policy: the present context’, to be delivered by- Hon’ble
Justice P.B. Sawant.

After the brief introduction to the topic and the guest of the evening by
the chairperson, and the Provost, Justice Sawant delivered his lecture on the
topic.

He underlined the significance of the constitution, especially the preamble
to the constitution and highlighted the salient features of the same. He
referred to the present day challenges and ensuing debates in the country on
some of the significant aspects of the constitution and how these have
consequences for policy implementation. The Justice spoke at length on the
issues of farmers, breach of fundamental rights of citizens and development
issues. 

The session was followed by questions from students of FLAME University.  No doubt it was a serious topic, but the
thirst for knowledge among students was palpable.

BREIF ON HOW IT CAME ABOUT

The Indian constitution was adopted on 26th November
1949 and in order to celebrate the occasion, Government of India has declared
26th November as the Indian Constitution Day, and embarked on a year-long
celebration. In order to celebrate the constitution and public policy, we at
FLAME University organized the Inaugural Eminent Lecture Series which was
delivered by Hon’ble Justice P. B. Sawant.

One of the most significant objectives of the lecture on
the subject of the “Constitution and public policy: the present context” was to
sensitize the faculty and students on the Constitution of India primarily, and
to understand the various compulsions on the Judiciary for directing the
Executive and adjudicating in implementation of the policies.

The Eminent Lecture Series is an important activity of
the Centre for Public Policy, introducing the students and faculty to thought
processes of the eminent scholars, practitioners and leaders from the different
fields of public policy.

KEY TAKEAWAYS FROM THE SESSION

The students understood the policy making process and
the directives that come from the constitution. It was an important lecture
that highlighted importance of public policy, especially social development
policies, and the law of the land. The event motivated the students to bring
the debate on development and policies back on the agenda and generated
interest in public policy courses that are being offered at FLAME University.

LECTURE DELIVERED BY: HON’BLE JUSTICE P. B. SAWANT (Ex-Judge, Supreme Court of India)

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