Constitutional Provisions on Formation of new States and Alternation of Boundaries – Article 3, 4
The makers of our Constitution, empowered Parliament to reorganize the States by a simple procedure, the essence of which is that the affected State or States may express their views but cannot resists the will of Parliament.
The reason why such liberal power was given to the national government to reorganize the States is that the grouping of the Provinces under the Government of India Acts was based on historical and political reasons rather than the social, cultural or linguistic divisions of the people themselves. The question of reorganizing the units according to natural alignments was indeed raised at the time of the making of the Constitution but then there was not enough time to undertake this huge task, considering the magnitude of the problem.
The provisions relating to the above subjects are contained in Art. 3 and 4 of the Constitution.
Article 3 says :
“Parliament may by law—
a) form a new State by separation of territory from any State or by uniting two or more States or parts of States or by uniting any territory to a part of any State,
(b) increase the area of any State,
(c) diminish the area of any State,
(d) alter the boundaries of any State,
(e) alter the name of any State:
Provided that no Bill for the purpose shall be introduced in either House of Parliament except on the recommendation of the President and unless, where the
proposal contained in the Bill affects the area, boundaries or name of any of the States, the Bill has been referred by the President to the Legislature of that State for
expressing its views thereon within such period as may be specified in the reference or within such further period as the President may allow and the period so specified
or allowed has expired.”
Article 4 provides that any such law may make supplemental, incidental and consequential provisions for making itself effective and may amend the First and Fourth
Schedules of the Constitution, without going through the special formality of a law for the amendment of the Constitution as prescribed by Article 368. These Articles, thus,
demonstrate the flexibility of our constitution. By a simple majority and by the simple legislative process Parliament may from new States or alter the boundaries, etc., of
existing States and thereby change the political map of India. The only condition laid down for the making of such a law are:-
(a) No bill for the purpose can be introduced except on the recommendation of the President.
(b) The President shall, before giving his recommendation, refer the Bill to the Legislature of the State which is going to be affected by the changes proposed in the Bill, for expressing its views on the changes within the period specified by the President. The President is not, however, bound by the views of the State Legislature, so ascertained.
Here is, thus, a special feature of the Indian federation, viz., that the territories of the units of the federation may be altered or redistributed if the Union Executive and
legislature so desire.
(Sourced from Introduction to the Constitution of India: Dr. Durga Das Basu)