The Centre for Law and Policy Research (CLPR) recently organized a two-day Constitution workshop for students from Ananya Trust in Chikkabelandur, Bangalore, held on July 10th and 11th, 2023. The workshop aimed to cultivate an appreciation for civic and democratic processes, particularly elections, while providing an introductory understanding of the Indian Constitution.
On the first day, Anish Saha, CLPR’s Communications Associate, delivered an interactive presentation introducing the Indian Constitution and its preamble. The presentation explored fundamental concepts, such as the purpose and significance of constitutions. Following the presentation, the students engaged in a preamble jigsaw puzzle activity . Anish and Santosh, a staff member from Ananya Trust, guided the students through the th meaning of key constitutional values, including ‘sovereign,’ ‘republic,’ ‘equality,’ and ‘democratic.’ The second half of the workshop introduced election processes. These ideas ad concepts were then engaged with in the real world when elections to the Ananya Trust’s student governance council were held.
During the elections, each candidate delivered a campaign speech and faced questions from their peers. This activity emphasized the importance of holding elected officials accountable and asking questions when necessary. These preparatory exercises laid the foundation for the actual voting process and elections held on the workshop’s second day. The students then participated in a election, undergoing identity verification by CLPR’s ballot workers posing as the Election Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner. Afterward, they cast their votes for the school Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister in private voting booths. The ballots were counted publicly once the election concluded. The newly elected Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister selected a cabinet of 6 ministers that were given charge of six portfolios.
Across the two days, students at Ananya Trust were introduced to key constitutional ideas and had the opportunity to apply them in their everyday lives.