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The Union and Its Territories

  • Article 1 of the Constitution describes India as a Union of States.
  • The expression ‘Union of India’ should be distinguished from the expression ‘ Territory of India’.
  • The ‘Union’ includes only the states which enjoy the status of being members of the federal system and share a distribution of power with the Union , the term ‘territory of India’ includes the entire territory over which the sovereignty of India, for the time being extends. viz. (1) Union Territories and (2) such other territories as may be acquired by  India.

Formation of new States and alteration of areas, boundaries or names of existing States.
  • The names of the States and Union Territories are specified in the First Schedule to the Constitution.
  • Article 2 provides that Parliament may by law admit new States into the Union of India or establish new states on such terms and conditions as it deems fit.
  • Under Article 3, the Constitution empowers the Parliament to 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.
  • The Constitution further states that Parliament has the power to increase or diminish the area of any State or to alter the boundaries or names of any State.
  • However, the Parliament has to follow certain procedures in this regard.
  • A Bill giving affect to any or all the changes stated above can be introduced in either House of the Parliament, only on the recommendation of the President.
  • If such a Bill affects the boundary or name of a State, then the President, before introducing it in the Parliament, shall refer the Bill to the State Legislature concerned for its opinion, fixing a time limit within which an opinion must be expressed by the State Legislature.

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