The story of India’s state formation since independence has included a story of rising influence on the part of the federal states. At independence in 1947, India inherited the British-brokered constitution of 1935. It embodied two possibilities, a centralized authoritarian “vice-regal” state and a decentralized, or federal, parliamentary state. Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the “great leader” of Pakistan, chose the former option, in effect acting as the successor to Lord Louis Mountbatten, the British raj’s last viceroy and governor-general of India. Jawaharlal Nehru, despite his personal penchant for centralized rationalization, selected the latter course and became the prime minister of a parliamentary government in a federal system.
The present paper attempts to assess the new dimensions of Indian democracy the excluded population and its performance in creating durable and sustainable community assets in the country.