This particular piece is more of a manifesto of the inefficient constitutional silences which for long have been a brewing ground of irrationality and passive slavery. Which to be honest does not seem like an appropriate sentencing of terms, it seems absurd for any democratic country to have framed ‘Constitution and Slavery’ together. But it needs to be realized that a constitution is a mere apparatus, its application depends as much on the person working the apparatus than on the wording of the constitution itself.
For long the idea behind a written constitution has been a conspicuous restraint on the working of the government. However, this apparent cause has not been able to justify the libertarian hue which our constitution has been suffering from. Yes, the Government is restrained, but the question remains what happens to the individual-to-individual transactions, if they are still to be governed by societal rules then the strong will empower the weak, then the ultimate question is what does the constitution achieves.
If the Constitution is working against the ‘State’, what happens to the market untouched by the essence of Constitutional morality, they are bound to be governed by a societal rule. All these spaces of silence of constitution are an occasion of ‘Matsyanaya’ where the weak will be thumped by the strong. Any civilized society before entering a formal contract such as the constitution is bound to go through a social revolution, be it the Russian revolution, The Renaissance or the French revolution. The irony with India was we never went through a social revolution, we entered this contract of constitution with our pre-conceived bias, prejudice and class divisions. The traces of which can easily be seen in the present working of the society. We still live in ‘State of Nature’ along with a ‘Civilized Society’. The problem with this semi-social contract is that we are bound to create spaces where these prejudices will survive.
To go along with this is the current state of India State, which is not a very strong entity capable of fostering all the needs of its citizens or gives enough resources for their survival. Therefore, the State has to depend on the private corporations for offering job opportunities, who under this garb of welfare purpose hold the state at gunpoint, the economic structure of our society is such that people are ready to work for 10K for 11 hours a day. The mass population with less or no skill is helping the cause of the private spaces to exploit the individual for its own benefit. Thus creating an ambiance similitude to slavery, how can a constitution subsist knowing that manual scavenging still is pretty much a reality, that mass of its population is degraded in the name of the office hours. Where does the constitution really works, does it works only against the State, where is the idea of free will. Is our constitution too is an elitist document made for safeguarding the few from the claws of the ‘State’, was it meant to be a libertarian manifesto for safeguarding the powerful.
There has to be more roles to the constitution than just a mere document of restrain on the power of the government. It needs to be more positively obligated, it needs to rummage spaces of discrimination, places of slavery which quite apparently lie there unfixed. This cannot be a story of a feeble state and a strong society, because Indian society of all its traits does not harness the trait of equality. The economic structure of the society is bound to force people to opt for jobs which will alienate them from certain basic rights. The amount of unskilled labor market in India is way too high to be accommodating in State jobs that is why even the State looks with a desperate eyes at the private corporations for jobs for its citizens.
To this end on a high note, I will draw a reference from Foucault, Do no ask what rights can be achieved through our constitution rather ask what constitution can do for us in achieving those rights and if our constitution does not do anything then a default question follows what purpose does our constitution fulfills. The ultimate viable question rises as to the existential question upon our constitution.