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CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTIONS AND CITIZENS' RIGHTSAn Omnibus Comprising Constitutional Questions in India and Citizens' Rights, Judges and State Accountability$
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A. G. Noorani

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195678291

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678291.001.0001

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Sanctity of the Constitution *

Sanctity of the Constitution *

Dieter Conrad—The man behind the ‘basic structure’ doctrine

(p.xi) 1 Sanctity of the Constitution*

A.G. Noorani

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with the evolution of the ‘basic structure’ doctrine, which states that any part of the Constitution may be amended by following the procedure prescribed in Article 368, but no part may be so amended as to ‘alter the basic structure’ of the Constitution. The arguments related to limitation on amending powers in the Golak Nath Case and the Kesavananda Case are examined. It then considers the contributions of German jurist and scholar, Professor Dietrich Conrad, to the theory of ‘implied limitations’ on amending power. It suggests that it was no coincidence that a German jurist had thought of implied limitations on the amending power. The Germans learnt from the bitter experience of the Nazi era.

Keywords:   basic structure doctrine, Golak Nath case, Indian Constitution, Dietrich Conrad, implied limitations, constitutional amendment

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