NCERT Solutions for Class 8 Social Science Chapter 1 - The Indian Constitution

Question 1:

Why does a democratic country need a Constitution?


All the democratic countries of the world have a Constitution. A democratic country needs Constitution due to the following reasons:
(i) Supreme Law of the Country: The Constitution is the supreme law of the state. The government at the state and central level work within the sphere of powers given to them by the constitution.
(ii) Provide Basic Rules: The Constitution provides basic rules and principles on the basis of which a democratic government functions.
(iii) Nature of Government: It is the Constitution that decides how the government will be organised. (iv) Rule of Law: Rule of law is a basic feature of a democratic country and the Constitution makes provisions for this feature.
(v) Limitations on the Government: The Constitution imposes limitations on the three organs of the government.

Question 2:

Look at the wordings of the two documents given below. The first column is from the 1990
Nepal Constitution. The second column is from the more recent Constitution of Nepal.

What is the difference in who exercises ‘Executive Power’ in the above two Constitutions of Nepal?


Under Article 35 of 1990, in the Constitution of Nepal, executive powers were exclusively vested with the King of Nepal. The King was the head of the state, as well as head of the government.
He exercised all the executive powers which were absolute. But under the Interim Constitution of 2007, the executive powers are vested with the Council of Ministers. The executive powers and functions are exercise in the name of the Prime Minister of Nepal. Council of Ministers and Prime Minister exercise executive powers in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.
According to the Interim Constitution, Constitution is supreme rather than the King of Nepal. In changed circumstances, there was a great need of a new Constitution which is based on democratic principles. Old Constitution does not reflect the ideals of the country. Hence, a new Constitution was needed for establishing democracy in Nepal. As in the game of football, in which a change in the constitutive rules will change the game altogether, Nepal, by moving from a monarchy to a democratic government, needs to change all its constitutive rules in order to usher in a new society.
This is why, the people of Nepal adopted a new Constitution for the country in 2015 and the executive power of Nepal shall be vested in the Council of Ministers.

Question 3:

What would happen if there were no restrictions on the powers of elected representatives?


In a democratic country, the government is run by the elected representatives. In India, legislative and executive powers are vested with the elected representative of the people. It is very essential that the elected representatives exercise their power to serve the people. They should exercise their powers in accordance with the provision of the Constitution. There should be some constitutional and legal restrictions on the powers of the elected representatives. If there are no restrictions, then the elected representatives will misuse the powers for their selfish interests and they will not serve the people. The Constitution limits the powers of the elected representatives in many ways. Generally, the powers of the elected representatives are limited by giving fundamental rights to the citizens.

Question 4:

In each of the following situations, identify the minority. Write one reason why you think it is important to respect the views of the minority in each of these situations.
(a) In a school with 30 teachers, 20 of them are male.
(b) In a city, 5 per cent of the population are Buddhists.
(c) In a factory mess for all employees, 80 per cent are vegetarians.
(d) In a class of 50 students, 40 belong to more well-off families.


(a) In a school with 30 teachers, women teachers are in a minority. Male teachers should respect the views and wishes of women teachers because under the Constitution, both men and women are equal.
(b) In a city, Buddhists are in a minority and the majority should respect the religion and sentiments of the Buddhists.
(c) In a factory mess, non-vegetarians are in a minority and majority vegetarians should respect the views of the minority.
(d) In a class of 50 students, 10 students who are not from well-off families are in a minority. The majority should respect the views of the minority so that inferiority complex does not develop among them.

Question 5:

The column on the left lists some of the key features of the Indian Constitution. In the other column write two sentences, in your own words, on why you think this feature is important:


Question 6:

Write down the names of the Indian States, which share borders with the following neighbouring nations:
(a) Bangladesh (b) Bhutan (c) Nepal


Indian states that share borders with Bangladesh are: Assam, West Bengal, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Tripura.
The Indian states of West Bengal, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Assam share their borders with Bhutan.
The five Indian states that share a land border with Nepal are Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, and Sikkim.

Question 7:

Who is in a minority in the storyboard on NCERT Textbook Page No. 8? In what way is this minority being dominated by the decision taken by the majority?


The girls are the minority in the storyboard. The girls are being dominated by the boys as the teacher decides what game they should play by the show of hands and as there are more boys in the class, the boys always dominate the girls.

Question 8:

Discuss the difference between State and Government with your teacher.


The word ‘State’ does not refer to state governments and is used to distinguish it from ‘government’.
The Government can change with every election and is responsible for enforcing the laws and administering them. On the contrary, a State is a political institution representing the sovereign people within a particular territory. The government (or the executive) is one part of the State. The Government and the State are two very different concepts and can not be used in place of the other.