Constitutional governance means all powers in society must be regulated, says AG Venkataramani

Attorney General R. Venkataramani has said that the idea of a Constitution is as powerful as the concept of ‘Dharma’ in India.

The Attorney General, a constitutional lawyer with experience of over four decades, also said: “The idea of a Constitution in my understanding is that all powers in the society – public power and private power – have to be regulated.”

Delivering the ‘Lily Thomas Memorial Lecture Series on the Constitution of India’ on Monday, he said: “Change and transformation are the essence of human life and evolution of a society and a nation and it is true that the Indian Constitution has evolved over the years into a wonderful flower.

“If those Constitution makers were to live today, they would have looked at the sky

and wondered what this Constitution which we gave to the people of the country has transformed itself into a wonderful flower.”

He said the biggest strength of the Indian Constitution is that the “people can play a role in constitution making, in the constitution processes”.

In terms of the role to be played by the Supreme Court and the lawyers, he said: “… we are not dealing with cases. As lawyers of course we are dealing with briefs, but the Supreme Court is dealing with issues,… the whole national panoramic of issues between government and individuals unfold their dimension for the purposes of resolution of meaningful orderly and peaceful and rule of law of the constitution.”

Venkataramani also said while each ideology, either Marxism or capitalism, have their limitations and failures, it ought to be kept in mind that the “genius of the human species is much larger than the ideologies”.

Thus, he emphasised “the genius of the human species is what makes our Constitution working”.

Venkataramani also said that the “idea of a constitution” itself has a global significance and Constitution making as an exercise has taken place across Europe and other parts of the world.

Rich tributes were paid to lawyer Lily Thomas who would be remembered for initiating improvement and change to existing laws by filing petitions in Supreme Court and various regional courts.

Thomas, who was hailed most notably for petitioning to amend the Representation of the People Act, expired on December 12, 2019.

(Nirendra Dev is a New Delhi-based journalist. He is also author of books, ‘The Talking Guns: North East India’ and ‘Modi to Moditva: An Uncensored Truth’)

20221213-231602

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