Question: Critically examine the fundamental right to life and personal liberty since 1978 with the help of decided cases.[BJS 2006] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [Critically examine the fundamental right to life and personal liberty since 1978 with the help of decided cases. [BJS 2006] Answer The judgment of Supreme Court in… Read More »

Question: Critically examine the fundamental right to life and personal liberty since 1978 with the help of decided cases.[BJS 2006] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [Critically examine the fundamental right to life and personal liberty since 1978 with the help of decided cases. [BJS 2006] Answer The judgment of Supreme Court in the case of Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India [AIR 1978 SC 597] (Passports Act, 1960) wherein widest possible interpretation was given to...

Question: Critically examine the fundamental right to life and personal liberty since 1978 with the help of decided cases.[BJS 2006]

Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [Critically examine the fundamental right to life and personal liberty since 1978 with the help of decided cases. [BJS 2006]

Answer

The judgment of Supreme Court in the case of Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India [AIR 1978 SC 597] (Passports Act, 1960) wherein widest possible interpretation was given to words and expression “personal liberty” observing that the expression “personal liberty” in Article 21 is of the widest amplitude and it covers a variety of rights which constitute the personal liberty of a man.

It was held that the scope of “personal liberty” is not be construed in a narrow and stricter sense. The court said that personal liberty has to be understood in the broader and liberal sense. Therefore, Article 21 was given an expansive interpretation. The court obligated the future courts to expand the horizons of Article 21 to cover all the Fundamental Rights and avoid construing it in a narrower sense.

The fundamental right to life and personal liberty encompasses within itself the following rights as subheads:

  1. Right to live with human dignity: The Right to live with dignity includes adequate nutrition, clothing, and shelter over the head with facilities of reading, writing, and expressing oneself. (Bandhua Mukti Morcha v. Union of India: AIR 1984 SC 802).
  2. Right to livelihood: It has been held by the Supreme Court that the imposition of Tehbazari by the Municipal Corporation is in violation of the rights of hawkers to carry on the business fetching them livelihood. (Olga Tellis v. Bombay Municipal Corporation: AIR 1986 SC 180).
  3. Right to Education: under Article 21A of the Indian Constitution as a fundamental right of a (Mohini Jain v. State of Karnataka: AIR 1992 SC)
  4. Right of prisoners and right against illegal detention. Even a person convicted of any offense, though deprived of freedom, but is well entitled to rights guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. Even solitary confinement of a person in jail was held to be violative of Article 21 (Sunil Batra v. Delhi Administration: 1980 SCC (3) 488). In another important case (D.K. Basu v. State of West Bengal: 1997 1 SCC 416), Supreme Court laid down the guidelines to be followed by the concerned authorities in cases of arrest and detention.
  5. Right to free legal aid and right to a speedy trial has also been held as an inalienable right of every citizen of the country (Hussainara Khatoon v State of Bihar: AIR 1979 SC 1369 and Khatri v. State of Bihar: 1981 SCC (1) 627)
  6. Right against sexual harassment at workplace: (Vishakha v. State of Rajasthan: 1997 (6) SCC 241).
  7. Right to choice of sex: The 5 Judges Constitution Bench in the case of Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of India: 2018 (1) SCC 791 has declared section 377 of IPC ultra vires, thereby striking down criminalization in same-sex relations between consenting adults.
  8. Right to clean environment: Article 21 includes the right to live a life of dignity in a healthy environment with a proper sanitation system and free of pollution (Vellore Citizens’ Welfare Forum v. Union of India: 1996 (5) SCC 647).
  9. Right to Privacy: (Justice K.S. Puttuswamy (Retd.) v. Union of India (2017) 10 SCC 1)
  10. Right to die with dignity: The Supreme Court has now allowed passive euthanasia under some exceptional circumstances and strict monitoring of the court (Aruna Ramchandra Shanbaug v. Union of India: 2011 (4) SCC 454 and Common Cause v. Union of India: (2018) 9 SCC 382)

Right to choose life partner: (Shakti Vahini v. Union of India: 2018 (7) SCC 192).


Important Mains Questions Series for Judiciary, APO & University Exams

  1. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-I
  2. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-I
  3. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-II
  4. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-IV
  5. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-V
  6. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-VI
  7. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-VII
  8. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-VIII
  9. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-IX
  10. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-X
Updated On 2021-06-01T08:12:59+05:30
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