Rights form the basis for the smooth functioning of society!

Law and order these words sound so heavy and scary at the same time, no matter how much we try to read about it, it always seems like we don’t know enough. In many situations, we find ourselves in a fix and wish that only if we knew more about it.

There are times when we see those police officers and certain officials taking advantage of our innocence or of other people and rub these laws right into our face, how we wish we knew the right version of that law or any counter save for it and we could give a monologue on how things should be and could have our own heroic moment, but this ain’t no Bollywood and life is a bitch and will remain that way.

So before we find ourselves stuck with another snooty official and it’s too late to prepare for our monologue, let’s read about some Basic Fundamental Rights that we wish we knew.

Why the basic understanding of these common laws is important?

First of all these rights form the basis for the smooth functioning of society and are very important for protecting society from taking the shape of dictatorial or authoritarian rule.

It gives the citizens a leg to stand on and the liberty to safeguard their interests and propagate their beliefs without the invasion of the state.

Before we get into the details about our rights, I’ll tell you why I felt that I need to know these basic fundamental rights to save myself from any sort of harassment and embarrassment in the future.

Back In 2019, a friend of mine went on a trip with her boyfriend and they stayed in a hotel, just like any normal person would do, but after two days there was a police round-up in the hotel(which was a reputed one), where they were checking IDs of every guest staying in that hotel and when they found out that few unmarried couples were staying, they made a big deal about it and started with their moral policing in the name of DUTY and threatened to arrest all of them in the pretext of doing illegal activities like prostitution and keep them in the police station until their parents flew in and bailed them out of it.

But at last, the matter was sorted when they got what they needed, that is some cash both from the couples and the hotel.

I know a lot of people will relate to it, but this is not the only incident, there are several other incidents where the greed and moral policing of the society and the officials knew no bounds, and the people suffering from it are the ones who don’t know about their rights or are ignorant of their rights.

Now, what are some basic fundamental rights that we all should know?

  1. Right To Life: Article 21 of the Indian Constitution says that a man’s life is more important than anything, and it is the duty of the state to make provisions for safeguarding the interests of its citizens. It also includes the right to protect one’s own life.
  2. Right To Education: The Constitution of India provides for free and compulsory education for the children up to the age of 14 years and it is the responsibility of the appropriate government to make sure that children receive education till elementary school.
  3. Right To Religious Freedom: According to the Indian Constitution every citizen of India has the right to practice and preach any religion they want and the state will have no religion of its own.
  4. Right To Freedom Of Speech And Expression: According to this right every citizen has the freedom to express their opinions, thoughts freely through words of mouth, writing, printing, pictures, or any other mode. It also includes freedom of the press.
  5. Right To Equality: According to Article 14 of the Constitution guarantees that every citizen is equal in the eyes of law and there shall be no discrimination on the basis of creed, caste, religion, language, or sex and everybody shall be given equal opportunity to grow and flourish.
  6. Freedom To Form Associations: Through this right, the constitution has provided the citizens freedom to form associations of various types in order to protect it’s social, political, and cultural interests whereas it is the duty of the state to allow them to do so.
  7. Right To Cultural Freedom: The state gives it’s a citizen the cultural freedom, under this, they are free to develop their customs, languages, traditions, and folks and a minority community is free to maintain it according to its beliefs.
  8. Right To Justice: Under this right, the weak and the poor are given proper access to justice and it gives them the right to secure justice from courts also it helps them to avail free legal aid whenever they are in need.
  9. Right To Personal Freedom: The citizens of the country are free to move anywhere they want within or outside the country and this is possible because the citizens have the right to personal freedom. This right is very important for the mental and physical growth of the citizens. The right to privacy is also an integral part of this right only.
  10. Right Against Exploitation: According to this right the trafficking of women, children, beggars, and other forced laborers is considered against human dignity, whereas the employment of children under the age of 14 in a hazardous profession is also considered illegal.

Being a Law student, I know understanding the legal language can be quite complex and monotonous, but here it’s narrowed down as much as possible to make it an eye-opener read. From now on whenever we’re stuck in a tricky situation we’ll know just the right thing to do or at least whenever a discussion of our rights would come up we will know where we stand.

This article was written by a law student Shreya Divyanshika Kumar.