This law post talks about the procedure of establishment and admission of states in the Union of India, which were foreign territories before.
Part I of the Constitution
Part 1 of the Indian Constitution consists of the various provisions dealing with the defined territory of India, which can be expanded through the acquisition of outside territories and reduced through ceding of the parts of Indian territory.
While the Indian territory can be ceded by the central executive, it cannot be seceded by any Indian state.
The states can also be divided, merged, their area can be altered, and names can be changed by the Union. But the states have no such power of establishment and admission of new territory, alteration or merger of boundaries or changing the name of itself or any other state.
Due to this reason, India is also called the ‘Indestructible Union of Destructible States’.
Article 1(3) defines the composition of the territory of India, which shall consist of:
- The territories of the State
- The Union territories
- Acquired territories
Admission and Establishment of New States
The sovereign nature of the Indian Constitution gives India the power to acquire foreign territories. The modes of acquisition are the ones recognised by International Law, that is:
Article 2 of the Indian Constitution grants the power to Parliament to admit and establish new states. The Parliament requires a simple majority (Article 4) to amend the provisions of Schedule 1 and Schedule 4. Article 2 thus primarily deals with the states (admitted or established) which are/were not part of the Indian Union.
Difference Between Admission and Establishment of States
Admission is when a state which was already in existence is acquired by India; and Parliament, through amendment, includes it in Schedule 1 and grants constituencies and seats to it (in various government houses and institutions) along with other rights.
On the other hand, when the same is done to a state which was not in existence when India acquired it, then it is called establishment.
Territories Admitted and Established by India Through Article 2
- Goa, Daman and Diu: Acquired by India from the Portuguese through police action in 1961.
- Dadar and Nagar Haveli: Liberated by the Portuguese in 1954, converted into a Union Territory by India in 1961.
- Puducherry: Ceded by the French to India in 1954, converted into a Union Territory by India in 1962.
- Sikkim: Given the status of a full-fledged state of India after a referendum in 1975.
- Extra Read: Earlier, Sikkim was a monarch nation which was firstly the protectorate (a state that is controlled and protected by another) of India since 1947 and then was formed an associate state of India through Article 2A and former* 10th schedule in 1974. This status (of being an associate state) was repealed in 1975.
- * The present 10th Schedule talks about anti-defection law but previously, when Sikkim was given the status of associate state, there was no 10th Schedule. Thus 10th Schedule was added, which talked about the special status of Sikkim, but later on, it was repealed as Sikkim became a full-fledged part of India. In 1985, a new 10th Schedule was added relating to anti-defection law.
Though India is not a state with an imperialist (imperialism means a policy of extending a country’s power and influence through colonisation, use of military force, or other means) ideology but the Constitution of India provides it with the power to acquire outside territories and admit them into its legitimate territorial ambit. And a simple majority of the Parliament is enough to admit or establish new states!
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