ConstitutionJudicial ExamLegal Notes

PCS (J) Notes: Constitutional Law, Fundamental Right with relevant case laws


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Part III,



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Object of Fundamental Rights.— The fundamental rights represent the basic values enriched by the people of India. The aim behind having an elementary right of the individual such as the Right to Life and Liberty is not fulfilled as desired by the Framers of the Constitution. It is to preserve and protect certain basic human rights against interference by the State. The inclusion of a fundamental rights chapter in the Constitution is in accordance with the trends of modern democratic thought. The object is to ensure the inviolability of certain essential rights against political vicissitudes, Siddharam Satlingappa Mhetre v. State of Maharashtra, (2011) 1 SCC 694.

Nature of Fundamental Rights.— Fundamental rights conferred by Part III are not distinct and mutually exclusive. A law depriving a person of personal liberty and prescribing a procedure for that purpose within the meaning of Article 21 has to stand a test of one or more of the fundamental rights conferred under Article 19 which may be applicable in a given situation. Ex-hypothesi it must also be likely to be tested with reference to Article 14. On principle, the concept of reasonableness must, therefore, be projected in the procedure contemplated by Article 21 having regard to the impact of Article 14 on Article 21, Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India, (1978) 1 SCC 248 : AIR 1978 SC 597 : (1978) 2 SCR 621.

Duty of Court.— One right does not override the other. No single right taken individually is absolute. Court’s duty is to strike a proper balance in a given situation where one right competes with other, Sahara India Real Estate Corpn. Ltd. v. SEBI, (2012) 10 SCC 603 : (2013) 1 SCC (L&S) 76 : (2013) 2 SCC (Cri) 202 : (2013) 1 SCC (Civ) 173.

Adoption Rights.— Right to adopt and right of child to be adopted not a fundamental right. Elevation of this right to status of fundamental right not possible at present in view of conflicting faith/beliefs of different communities, Shabnam Hashmi v. Union of India, (2014) 4 SCC 1.


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