What is society?
Society is a group of people sharing common territory who abide by a standard set of rules or principles
i.e., Law, and law is “the system of rules that a particular country or community recognizes as regulating the actions of its members and which it may enforce by the imposition of penalties.” As evolution and transformation with time is in the very nature of society, lawmakers from time to time keep molding the laws according to the needs of society. As the primary purpose of the law is the peaceful and smooth functioning of the society, the change in law becomes necessary with the changing needs of the society. The framers of the Constitution of India made sure that Constitution should not leave out any social aspect that would not come under the ambit of protection. The chairman of the drafting committee of the Indian constitution Dr. BR Ambedkar correctly pointed out that the constitution of India can be amended as and when society calls for it.
The Indian constitution came into force on 26th January 1950, and since then, there have been around one hundred and four constitutional amendments till now according to the time and the needs of the society. The British ruled India for around one hundred and ninety years, and during this time they exploited India in every sphere; from being the richest country in the world India became a poor, exploited, and helpless country during British rule. When India gained independence on 15 August 1947, the constitution makers were very well aware of the legal state of India and knew that mere drafting of a document named the constitution would not help. To make India stand again, it was necessary to make amends in some existing laws and to make some new laws to stop some age-old practices and customs which were in violation of fundamental rights and were a hindrance to the growth of India. Society has been through several modifications in the past years, and the law has indeed proved very helpful in bringing social change Law is a very dynamic subject, and that helps it to take the shape of its surrounding. A society can, therefore, benefit from this subject in many ways. To show the instrumentality of law on social change, it is necessary to study some special changes that have taken place in India because nothing is permanent, but the change in society is.
For instance, age-old practices and customs like untouchability, Sati, and dowry were brought to an end through the help of various legislations that in turn sensationalized these issues and became successful in spreading awareness about the sensitivity and the wrongfulness of these customs.
It is time for society to utilize the laws that exist efficiently so that the laws can be effective in bringing about social change in their true sense. Therefore, the solution to the question of how the law can be used as an instrument for creating social change lies in the society and its people themselves. Coming towards the end of the discussion regarding how a law can be used as an instrument of social change, it can be said that law is already an instrument present to bring in social change; it is on the society to make it effective.