The Constitution long before the review
By H.Y. Sharada Prasad
Spectrum - March,2000
WHO is the author of our Constitution? To that, many people would say: "What a question! Every one knows it is Dr Ambedkar."
But Ambedkar himself shied away from claiming that title for two reasons. One, as he often pointed out, he was only giving expression to a consensus that had been reached after many compromises in the Drafting Committee of the Constituent Assembly. Two, he could not hide the fact that in many areas the Constitution fell far short of what he would have liked.
But there is one man who literally wrote our Constitution. His name, little known, is Prem Behari Narain Raizada (Saxena), son of Brij Behari Narain Raizada of Delhi, although the family originally came from Rampur. The Constituent Assembly, which met on December 9, 1946, concluded its labours and adopted the Constitution on November 6, 1949. The entire document was then written out in his own hand by Prem Behari in a flowing italic style in the best calligraphic tradition of our country.
This original version was then signed by all the members of the Constituent Assembly in January 1950. The Constitution itself came into force on the 26th of that month. Photolithographed copies of it were then made at the office of the Survey of India in Dehra Dun.