As Parliament began functioning from the new building, Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury raised voice and pointed out that the copy of the Constitution distributed to Members of Parliament missed the words "Socialist and Secular" in its Preamble.

"The copy of the Constitution given to us did not have the words Socialist and Secular. They (the government) can say it is an older version. But they should have included the amended version too. They may say they have given us the original version. I think there is a deliberate design," Chowdhury said.

Lok Sabha in new Parliament building
Lok SabhaIANS

The two terms – Socialist and Secular – were inserted into the Preamble as part of the 42nd Amendment of the Constitution in 1976 during Emergency imposed by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

However, Union Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal played down the issue saying the members may have been given a copy of the "original" Constitution.

"It (Preamble) was like this when the Constitution was adopted. After that, the 42nd amendment came... So it must be the original copy," he said.

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The Minister said, "When the Constitution was drafted, it was like this. An amendment was made later. This is the original copy. Our spokesperson has replied to the same."

The remarks from the minister came after Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury and another MP Dola Sen claimed that the words 'socialist' and 'secular' have been dropped from the Preamble of the Constitution of India – the new copies of which were distributed to the MPs on Tuesday.

(With inputs from IANS)