Article 14 | Right to equality | Constitution of India | Fundamental Rights

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Article 14 of the Constitution of India, 1950 was not a standalone provision in the Draft Constitution, 1948. It was initially included in Draft Article 15 (Article 21) which read: ‘Protection of life and liberty and equality before the law – No person shall be deprived of his life or liberty except according to the procedure established by law, nor shall any person be denied equality before the law or the equal protection of the law within the territory of India.’

Draft Article 15 was taken up for discussion on the 6th and 13th of December 1948. The discussions that took place on these two days revolved around the first part, whereas the second – ‘equality before the law’- was not debated at all. In its letter to the President of the Constituent Assembly dated 3rd November 1949 presenting its revised Draft Constitution, the Drafting Committee mentioned that – ‘We have considered it more appropriate to split this article into two parts and to transfer the latter part of this article dealing with “equality before the law” to a new article 14 under the heading ‘Right to Equality. Article 14 was thereby introduced into the Constitution of India, 1950.

Following heads and case laws are discussed in Article 14 :

  • 1. Rule of law
  • 2. AV Dicey (supremacy of law)
  • 3. Equality before the law
  • 4. Equal protection of the laws

Case Laws:

  • 1. State of Bombay vs. FN Balsara
  • 2. Kedarnath Bajoria vs state of West Bengal (1953)
  • 3. P Rajendran vs. State of Madras, 1968
  • 4. Air India vs. Nargeesh Meerza, 1981
  • 5. State of West Bengal vs. Anwar Ali Sarkar (1953)
  • 6. Ameerunnisa Begum vs. Mehboob begum (1953)

Doctrines:

  • 1. Intelligible Differentia
  • 2. Rational Nexus
  • 3. Reasonable Classification

For further details and explanation with case law please visit the link below:


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