Human Rights and Endeavours for its Protection in India

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Written by: Ms Devshree Dangi

Humans are the creations of God. They all have certain rights that have to be protected by every nation. Every human on this earth has certain natural rights and they cannot be deprived of their Natural Rights.

Human rights are not a new concept. The Vedas, Manusmriti, Arthashashtra and many other scriptures have the concept of Human Rights.

Various written documents such as Magna Carta (1215), French Declaration of Rights of Man and of other Citizens (1789), US Bills of Rights (1791) have also asserted many Human Rights. After the Second World War, in the 20th century, the United Nations came into existence in the year 1945. And in the year 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights was presented with 30 Articles in it. It was awarded as the first recognition to the Human Rights universally.

Human Rights in India

 India is the signatory of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Indian Constitution in its third and fourth part has provided to protect Human Rights. The third part of the Indian Constitution that is provided for the Fundamental Rights of the people of India is the basic structure of the Indian Constitution and it cannot be amended.

Under Article 32 of the Indian constitution, the people of India has provided the Right to approach to the Supreme Court to claim their Rights provided by the Indian Constitution when violated.

This article further provides in 32(3) that the legislation can direct any court to protect these Rights given in Indian Constitution.

In India, An Act is also provided for the protection of Human Rights “Protection of the Human Rights Act, 1993″. This Act directs the establishment of the National Human Rights Commission, the State Human Rights Commission and Human Rights Court for the protection of Human Rights across the Country.

Supreme Court on the protection of Human Rights

Supreme Court is the guardian of fundamental rights in India. And it is the duty of the Supreme Court to Protect the Human Rights of the citizens of India Nationally as well as internationally.

The people of India can directly approach the Supreme Court and High Court under Articles 32 and 226 of Indian Constitution respectively. The only exception to this Right is National Emergency under Article 32(4).

In the Indian Constitution, the Fundamental Rights under its part three are the basic structure of it and can’t be amended.

Article 32 and 226 are itself the Rights of people of India.

Judiciary is an independent body in India so it is free from the interference of Government in it. And Rights Such as Article 32 makes the Supreme Court the protector of Human Rights.

There are certain cases which are the examples that the Supreme Court advanced and promote the protection of Human Rights;

This case is also known as the “Fundamental Right Case”. This fundamental Right Case overruled the Golaknath case. This case introduced the Doctrine of Basic Structure. The Court ordered in this case that an act by Parliament to rewrite the Constitution will be counted as Ultra vires. With this judgment, the Supreme Court has protected human rights fundamentally.

This case is also known as the “Habeas Corpus case”. In this case, Justice H.R. Khanna ordered that state cannot deprive anyone of his Right to Life and Personal Liberty without due process of law.

In this case, it was held that Rights given under Article 14, 19 and 21 are interconnected. It gave a detailed interpretation of the term personal liberty.

This case is also known as Maintenance case”. In this case, the Supreme Court granted maintenance to Shah Bano beyond the personal law of Muslims. Read this judgement the Supreme Court protected the rights of Muslim women around the country.

All these judgements of the Supreme Court prove that the Supreme Court has always been protected the HumanRights and it will always be protecting the Human Rights.

In India, there is the National Human Rights Commission at Central level and the State Human Right commission at the state level to protect Human Rights. Also, there are various human rights courts for the prevention of the violation of human rights. In India, Human Rights are well protected by law and the Constitution.

India is a signatory to the UDHR and thus it respects the concept of Human Rights. The Indian Constitution has given six fundamental rights to the citizens of India in its part III which are enforceable by law. Supreme Court is the guardian of these rights and other lower courts are also the protectors of these rights.

The protection of Human Rights Act directs the High Courts to do sessions on Human Rights cases for speedy justice. The Human Rights law is well structured in India and the superior, as well as the lower courts, always do their best to promote it.


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