Constituent Assembly of India

The first task of this Assembly is to free India through a new constitution, to feed the starving people, and to clothe the naked masses, and to give every Indian the fullest opportunity to develop himself according to his capacity. This is certainly a great task. Look at India today. We, are sitting here and there in despair in many places, and unrest in many cities. The atmosphere is surcharged with these quarrels and feuds which are called communal disturbances, and unfortunately we sometimes cannot avoid them. But at present the greatest and most important question in India is how to solve the problem of the poor and the starving. Wherever we turn, we are confronted with this problem. If we cannot solve this problem soon, all our paper constitutions will become useless and purposeless. Keeping this aspect in view, who could suggest to us to postpone and wait?

At 11 AM on 9 December 1946 the Assembly began its first session, with 211 members attending. By early 1947, representatives of the Muslim League and princely states joined, and the Assembly approved the draft constitution on 26 November 1949. On 26 January 1950, the constitution took effect (commemorated as Republic Day), and the Constituent Assembly became the Provisional Parliament of India (continuing until after the first elections under the new constitution in 1952).

The Constituent Assembly appointed a total of 22 committees to deal with different tasks of constitution-making. Out of these, Nine were major committees and the others were minor committees.