Criticism of The Fundamental Rights: Exploring Key Debates and Concerns

In order to safeguard the nation's citizens, the Supreme Court of India has recognized and guaranteed fundamental rights. But there are people who have raised their problems regarding the fundamental rights under the Indian constitution.

It's important for us to know about the criticism of fundamental rights. And, this is why we have added the constructive criticism of the fundamental rights under this article. If you are also here to know about the same, then please read this article entirely.

So, let's start-

Fundamental Rights

The intellectual and moral growth of each and every person depends heavily on these rights. Each and every Indian has the following fundamental rights:

Right to Equality

Everyone has the right to the same opportunities and treatment.

Right to Freedom

The right to freedom refers to the freedom from many restrictions. Some of the important rights are the right to speak, travel freely within the country, work in any lawful job, create or join a group, and peacefully assemble without using violence.

Right against Exploitation

Trafficking beggars or any other human being is a criminal offense. A person is shielded from all forms of forced labor by this right.

Right to Freedom of Religion

Every person has the right to practice, profess, and spread their religion, and they all deserve to be treated equally regardless of their personal religious background.

Cultural and Educational Rights

It is everyone's right to preserve and advance any and all forms of culture. They can create and run educational institutions to safeguard their language.

Right to Constitutional Remedies

As stated in Article 32, the provision of a guaranteed remedy is a fundamental right in and of itself.

The Importance of Fundamental Rights

Here are a few points on the importance of fundamental rights-

  • They are the foundation of India's democratic system.
  • Establish the prerequisites for human beings' physical and moral protection
  • Act as a powerful bastion of individual freedom.
  • Promote the development of the rule of law;
  • Safeguard the interests of minorities and weaker societal groups.
  • They support India's secular structure.
  • Verify the government's authority is unquestionable.
  • Place the first brick in the path of social justice and equality.
  • They protect people's rights to respect and dignity.
  • Encourage people to participate in political and administrative processes.

Criticism of The Fundamental Rights

There are many areas of India's fundamental rights that are lacking in conviction, importance in real life, recognition, or actual impact of any appreciable proportions. These are what they are:

The Existence of Numerous Restrictions

Each of the fundamental rights is subject to numerous restrictions. Because there are so many requirements to exercise rights, even their positive aspects begin to appear negative due to the excessive amount of restrictions that are placed on them. Many critics contend that while the Constitution grants these rights to some people, it also takes those same rights away from others.

Lack of Social and Economic Rights

The fundamental rights primarily protect political freedoms, with only a few clauses protecting social and economic freedoms like the right to work, the right to leisure, the right to an employer, the right to social security, etc.

Citizens of advanced democracies are granted access to these rights. These rights were also included in the socialist constitutions of the former USSR and China. Thus, there is a lot of criticism directed at this aspect of fundamental rights.

Lack of Clarity

These fundamental rights are utterly unclear. The majority of rights are unclear in terms of what exactly is permitted and forbidden by the laws that govern them. The rights are described in a way that is extremely ambiguous, nebulous, and indefinite. So, to put it mildly, the majority of them are not precisely defined.

Emergency Suspension

When people learn that fundamental rights are suspended during times of national emergency (with the exception of Articles 20 and 21), their effectiveness suffers significantly. The rights and interests of the average person are gravely endangered by this.

It's Not Permanent

They are not unbreakable or unchangeable because the Parliament has the power to restrict or eliminate them, as it did in 1978 with the fundamental right to property. They can therefore be used as a plaything by politicians who have the support of the majority in the Parliament. The only restriction on Parliament's ability to limit or abolish the fundamental right is the "doctrine of basic structure," which was developed by the courts.

Expensive Remedy

These rights must be upheld and protected by the judiciary from interference from legislatures and executive branches. The cost of the legal system is so high that it prevents the normal citizens from using the courts to fight for his/her rights. Therefore, the rights primarily benefit the wealthy segment of Indian society, according to critics.

No enduring Philosophy

Some critics contend that there is no philosophical foundation for the chapter on fundamental rights. When he claimed that the Fundamental Rights proclaimed by the Indian Constitution are based on no coherent philosophy, Sir Ivor Jennings expressed this opinion. 25 The Supreme Court and the high courts will find it difficult to interpret the fundamental rights, according to the critics.


Q1. What is the negative concept of fundamental rights?

Ans: Simply because they forbid the State from taking any action that might violate a citizen's fundamental rights, fundamental rights are inherently negative in nature. Because a claim made by one person imposes a negative duty on everyone else, they are referred to as "negative."

Q2. What are the limitations of fundamental rights in India?

Ans: The restrictions are necessary for the general welfare, social reforms, public order, morality, and state safety. The constitution permits the state to restrict some rights "reasonably," but the "reasonability" of the restrictions is a legal issue.

Q3. Which of the following is one of the main criticisms against fundamental duties

Ans: Critics argue that it is pointless to include these obligations in the Constitution because they cannot be enforced by a court of law. Citizens are required to fulfill certain civil duties on a continuous basis, such as respecting the national anthem and flag.

Q4. What are the limitations of rights?

Ans: Limitations on rights are restrictions that are required to strike a balance between rights that are in opposition to one another or with other public goals. They do not deal with urgent circumstances.

Updated on: 05-May-2023


Kickstart Your Career

Get certified by completing the course

Get Started