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Dalit Right






SC&ST DALIT’S RIGHTS 

What Rights?


Before we look into or talk of SCs, STs, or SC&ST Dalits, or SC&ST Dalit Rights, let us think about Rights!  What are these Rights?  To understand the Rights better, let us first ask ‘What are Rights?’ and ‘What Rights We Individuals – Dalits or not – have?’  For that matter, What Right or Rights any Individual anywhere in the World, whether in India or abroad – be that in America, Canada, England or anywhere in Europe or elsewhere has?  And, what are the Source or Sources of these Rights?  Can there be any end to these Rights?  We have to ask these Questions for a specific Reason, with a particular Purpose, if we are to understand the beginning or origin and end of SC&ST Dalit Rights!

TYPES OF RIGHTS

What are the different types of Rights that one can have?

Why many!  Some examples are –


1.       Human Rights - Rights to Live, Dignity, Individual Freedom, Privacy, Equal Wages at least for the same jobs done at the same time, Equal Rights and so on!

2.       Civil Rights     - Rights to have Access to Public Places, Equal Civic Facilities etc

3.       Social Rights  - Rights to Equality, Equal Treatments, Fraternity, gather in a public place, speak and laugh publicly etc

4.       Cultural Rights  -    Rights to Speak without fear, Write, Sing, Dance, Paint, dress, eat what one likes etc


5.       Religious Rights    -    Rights to believe, opt, embrace, convert oneself and convert others, preach and propagate any Religion of ones choice, quit, and not believe or practice or belong and criticise rationally, logically, reasonably and legally any Religion affecting any individual.

6.       Educational Rights -    Rights to Education, Learning, Admissions to Schools, Colleges, Universities, Courses, different Subjects etc

7.       Political Rights  -    Rights to Vote or Universal Adult Franchise, Liberty etc

8.       Constitutional Rights  -    Rights for Protection from Discrimination, Justice etc

9.       Legal Rights   - Rights to move Courts, Legal Protection etc

10.   Land Rights    - Rights to own Lands, acquire Land, acquire any Land, sell or dispose-off any land to any person one chooses or any purpose of ones liking, etc.  That includes the right to enjoy the land, benefits accruing from the land, Rights to plough and Cultivate the Land, and harvest and market the Produce

11.   Economic Rights   -    Rights to acquire, buy, bequeath, will-away, gift, sell, dispose-off, hold Property, do business, take up any Profession or Occupation, receive and adequate and full Remuneration for Work and Services

12.   Fundamental Rights-  Rights recognised by the State as Fundamental to all People and every Person, without any exception

13.   Basic Rights   - Rights to food, shelter, housing etc

14.   Natural Rights   -    Rights based on Nature and Natural Justice

15.   Special Rights   -    Rights Specially granted to any Group or Professions etc based on their Responsible Certified Competence, without violating others’ Rights or Infringing other Liberties

16.   Professional Rights    -    Rights of a Professional to carry out the Profession in due Professional Manner as Certified and approved by the Profession, and its Professional Ethics

17.   Sovereign Rights   -    Rights of the Sovereign – the King or Queen in the Past, hence Sovereign, but the Citizen or the People these days

18.   Remedial Rights     -    Rights to Remedy any wrong, or violation of any Right or Rights

And there could be many more such Rights!

And what is/are the Source(s) of these Rights?

That need not always be the Constitution!  We must clearly Remember that!


But any Right, its utility, usefulness and capacity to benefit from it, depends upon the vigilance and capacity of the People.  That People must, particularly guard against their transgression, violation, abridgement, revocation etc.  They must be careful to preserve the Rights, and extra careful to ensure that the Rights continue, and remains with them in future also!

STRANGE AND FUNNY RIGHTS!

India, is Unique!  That because, it is a strange Country!  Here in India, there are many funny Rights.  And what is more, there is many strange and specific, cruel and inhuman Denial of Rights.  They don’t stand to any logic reason or rational thinking.

We have the following Strange Rights, that are Reserved only for a few, and denied for most others.  And there are some Specific Rights, which can not be exercised by some.  And that some, are in hundreds of millions of People!  What is more surprising is that, the millions who are denied Rights, are the most productive people.  They are the backbones of the Nation.  They are the engines of economy, and prime-movers of all developments.

 Some of the funny Rights are –

1.       Rights to get Water

2.       Rights to use Public Facilities to take Bath

3.       Rights to Dress

4.       Rights to Style of Dressing

5.       Rights to Hair-do

6.       Rights to Jewellery

7.       Rights to See and be Seen

8.       Rights to Hear and Listen certain things

9.       Rights to Approach and Proximity

10.   Rights to Walk or Drive through the Streets, where cats dogs and pigs roam freely

11.   Rights to Wear Slippers and Shoes or any Footwear

12.   Rights to Sit before others

13.   Rights to Touch

14.   Rights to Dine-with

15.   Rights to take Coffee and Tea or Water in Restaurants, Hotels, and wayside Shops 

16.   Rights of Acceptability

17.   Rights to Marry

18.   Rights to Access even the Cemetery – Burial Grounds

19.   Right of Way to ones own Residence

20.   Rights to move out of the Villages and to nearby Towns and Markets, for Sale of Surplus Produce, Jobs etc

21.   Rights to Gather and Speak-out the Mind openly and boldly, without fear of loosing employment, jobs, earnings, physical safety, and even life of the person and of the family members

22.   Rights to Meet Others

Most of the above Rights are denied to SC&ST Dalits, specifically and particularly.  Hence, some of these Rights, have been Guaranteed to the SC&ST Dalits, by the Constitution, in a general manner, as the Rights of all Citizens of India.  But they have been built, particularly into the Constitution, only for the specific purpose of ensuring that SC&ST Dalits get them.  Some Rights have been Specifically included in the Constitution, as Specific Rights, exclusively for SC&ST Dalits, to doubly ensure that the SC&ST Dalits are not denied of them.

CONSTITUTION OF INDIA

Constitution of India was drafted by the Constituent Assembly of India.  It was originally elected before Independence for the United India.  It met first on the 9th of December 1946.  It worked for two years eleven months and eighteen days, before it adopted the Constitution.  The Constituent Assembly had held eleven sessions.  First six Sessions were spent in passing the Objectives Resolution, and Consideration of the Reports of various Committees including the one on Fundamental Rights.  The seventh to eleventh sessions debated the Draft Constitution.

After Partition of the Country, on 15th August 1947, the Members elected to the Constituent Assembly from Areas that remained with Indian Union, continued with the work of framing Free India’s Constitution.  All those elected from the areas that fell into the newly created Pakistan went to Pakistan, or resigned.  Baba Saheb Dr BR Ambedkar, elected in a by-election from the constituency vacated by Mandal, lost his Membership of the Constituent Assembly, as that fell into East-Pakistan, the present day Bangladesh.  Baba Saheb was thankfully re-elected to the Constituent Assembly, from the seat vacated for him by Jayakar, of the Congress Party.

In the Constituent Assembly, Baba Saheb was also elected to the Drafting Committee of the Constitution, and ultimately became the Chairman of the Drafting Committee.  As Chairman, he moved the Draft Constitution, defended or redrafted every provision of the Constitution.  The Constitution finally was moved by Baba Saheb, for adoption on 25th November 1949.  And the Constitution was approved on 26th November 1949.  Every year, Supreme Court of India and the legal fraternity celebrate 26th of November as Law Day.  The Constitution of India formally came into effect on 26th Jan 1950.  That day, free India became Sovereign Democratic Republic, and every year we remember and gratefully celebrate the day as the Republic Day of India.  And after Constituent (Forty-second Amendment) Act passed by Parliament, the Nation is said to be a Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic.

The Drafting Committee, to prepare and accept the Draft Constitution, and presentation before the Constituent Assembly of India, for Consideration, was elected on 29th August 1947.  It met first, on 30th August 1947.  Its sessions lasted for 141 days in preparing the Draft Constitution.  The Draft by the Constitutional Adviser had 243 Articles and 13 Schedules.  The Drafting Committee worked on it, and presented to the Constituent Assembly, a Draft Constitution with 315 Articles and 8 Schedules.  At the end of Consideration of the Draft Constitution by the Constituent Assembly, the Articles were 386.  In its final form, there were 395 Articles and 8 Schedules.  Amendments tabled by Members were about 7,635.  Of those, the ones actually moved were 2,473.

In comparison, the American Convention, met on 25th May 1787, and completed the Constitution with only seven Articles and 21 Sections in the first four, within four months, on 17th Sept 1787.  The Constitutional Convention of Canada assembled on 10th October 1884, and finished its task in two years and five months, with 147 Articles, by March 1867.  The Australian Constitutional Convention, was convened in March 1891 and finished its work on 9th July 1900, with 128 Articles.  That, after a period of nine years.  All of them completed their work, without considering any amendments.

We must always remember that, Constitution is the basic Law of a Country.  It provides specifically to the Citizens particular Rights, defines their Duties, and delineates the Responsibilities of every authority, official, institution and individual, living in the Country and governed by the Constitution.  All Authorities and Institutions, derive their existence and power from the Constitution of the Land.  Hence, every one of them, has to work and function within the ambit of that Constitution.  All others, like the Authorities and Institutions, have to exist and operate, within the limits and boundaries of the Constitution.

The Preamble of the Constitution is more significant.  For, the Preamble reflects the Sole of any Constitution.  It embodies the Ideals and Aspirations of the People who made the Constitution, adopted and accepted it for their governance, and future.  It is the most significant Part of the Constitution, and can be amended like any other Provision in the Constitution, as long as that does not affect the basic character, principles and spirit of the Constitution.  All Laws, Practices and Procedures preceding, and all those that existed before the Constitution, are repealed if they are in contradiction and are violative of any Provisions of the Constitution.

The PREAMBLE of the Indian Constitution, reads as follows –

 THE CONSTITUTION OF INDIA

 PREAMBLE

   WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVERIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens :

  JUSTICE, social, economic and political;

  LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;

  EQUALITY of status and opportunity;

and to promote among them all

  FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and unity and integrity of the Nation;

  IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this twenty-sixth day of November 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION.

Apart from the PREAMBLE, the Constitution has 22 main Parts with 23 Chapters, 395 Articles and Nine Schedules.  These provide to every citizen, many Rights and Freedoms.  And naturally, with Rights and Freedoms, come many Duties.

 Indian Constitution is one of the largest written Constitution in the World.  It has in it many of the noblest concepts, human mind had conceived of, before it was drafted.

RIGHTS & DUTIES OF INDIVIDUALS

The Indian Constitution is one of the largest written Constitution, drafted after the path breaking and epoch-making French Revolution, American Revolution and Russian Revolution.  It also came after Industrial Revolution in Europe, the Liberal Thinkers and their Ideas.  And it had been framed long after the Unification of the German and Italian Nations by Bismarck and Garibaldi.  Therefore, every Progressive and Noble Thoughts of the World have been adopted and built into Indian Constitution.  And in the words of Baba Saheb, framer of the Constitution - not to do so would have only been irrational.  The Indian Constitution, naturally had derived a lot from the unwritten British Constitution.  It had adopted the British Parliamentary System, British Legal System and Principles of Administration.  And it had also incorporated many main Provisions drawn from various Govt of India Acts, made by the Imperial British for India and Indian People, and to the British Colonial Govt in India for its Governance.  Those were only to be expected.

The Rights Freedoms and Duties of Individuals, as Citizens of the Country, had been built into the Constitution in various Parts Chapters and Articles.  It will be a Study of the whole Constitution, all the Parts, Articles and Schedules, if we are to talk of all the Rights and Duties.  For almost all the Articles and Provisions such as the Preamble and Schedule hold many promises and hopes to the Citizens, and even to other Individuals.

As we had discussed earlier, some of the Rights are specific and special for specified segments of the Society – those who are otherwise marginalised discriminated exploited and suppressed.  These are specifically in addition, and apart from those clearly laid out, as the Rights and Duties of all Citizens.

The Rights one can derive, depends upon the way the People or Individual agitate demand legislate and govern themselves, before the authorities, the political parties, elected peoples representatives, in the Legislatives and Parliament, before the political executives in the Govts, and ultimately before the Govts and Courts.  However, the significant and apparently clear Rights and Duties are, specifically discussed below.

RIGHTS OF INDIVIDUALS
The Constitution has been made by Indians for Indians and their Govts.  Sovereignty of the Nation, lies with the People.  In fact it is the People, who give the Rights to others, to all Institutions - public and private - every individual in the Country, Citizens or not, and to themselves.  The People, also provide specific Directions to Govts, Political Parties and their Members, who come forward to represent them, form the Govts, and help Govern the Nation.

SOURCE OF RIGHTS!



Everyone’s Rights in the Country, start from –

      Part IV DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY

However, the Constitution Part IV on DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY, is only a Directive and guideline for the State, Parliament and Legislatives, Political Executives, Govts, the Bureaucracy and Planners, and to the People.  The DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY, do not give any direct rights and powers to the individuals.  People can not, in the normal circumstances go to Courts to demand any of the DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY, as their Rights or Dues, or ask the Courts to enforce them.

Apart from these there are specific Fundamental Rights.  They are large, specific, significant, essential and important to any Citizen in any part of the Country.  In fact, most of these are needed by any Citizen of any Nation living in any part of the World.  

The Fundamental Rights are contained in exclusive Part III of the Constitution.  They are the –

1.       Right to Equality – Articles 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18

2.       Right to Freedom – Articles 19 to 22

3.       Right against Exploitation – Articles 23 and 24

4.       Right to Freedom of Religion – Articles 25 to 28

5.       Cultural and Educational Rights – Articles 29 and 30

6.       Right to Constitutional Remedies – Articles 32 to 35

Right to Property, and the concerned Article 31, relating to Compulsory Acquisition of Property, was omitted and repealed by the Constitution (Forty-fourth Amendment) Act 1978.

Saving of Certain Laws, with related Articles 31A to 31 D were added by various Constitutional Amendments.  However, Article 31 D wrt Saving of Laws in respect of Anti-National Activities was subsequently repealed by the Constitutional (Forty-third Amendment) Act of 1977.

Rights have no meaning at all, unless one can force those others, or authorities or the Govts to give the Rights being denied, withheld or delayed, deliberately or otherwise, to yield and give the Rights.  Or one should be able ask or force the Govt and other authorities to intervene, and ensure or force those who are denying, withholding or standing in the way of the Rights, discipline them, and get the Rights.  Hence, the Constitution provides, vide Article 32, remedies for enforcement of Rights conferred by this Part.  This Article 32, in fact is the most important provision of the Constitution, forming part of Part III on Fundamental Rights.  It provides every Citizen and every individual, the Right to move the Supreme Court by appropriate proceedings for the enforcement of the Rights.

Other Relevant Provisions are –

1.       Under the Right to Equality,

a)                Article 14 provides the Right of EQUALITY BEFORE LAW

b)                Article 15 provides Rights for PROHIBITION OF DISCRIMINATION ON GROUNDS OF RELIGION, RACE, CASTE, SEX OR PLACE OF BIRTH

c)           Article 16 gives the Right to EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY IN MATTERS OF PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT

d)                Article  17 deals with Rights associated with the ABOLITION OF UNTOUCHABILITY, and

e)                Article 18 deals with Rights associated with the ABOLITION OF TITLES

2.       Under the Right to Freedom,

 a)                Article 19 on PROTECTION OF CERTAIN RIGHTS REGARDING FREEDOM OF SPEECH etc, it is said that,

(1)    all citizens shall have the right –

(a)    to freedom of speech and expression

(b)    to assemble peaceably and without arms

(c)    to form association or unions

(d)    to move freely throughout the territory of India

(e)    to reside and settle in any part of the territory of 

and,

(f)      to practice any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business

At the same-time vide part (2) of the same Article 19, the Constitution allows the Operation of any existing law, permits the States to make any law to impose restrictions on the above rights, that can be considered as reasonable.

b)                Article 20 gives the Rights of PROTECTION IN RESPECT OF CONVICTION FOR OFFENCES, in some unfair or unjust manner

c)                 Article 21 gives the Rights of PROTECTION OF LIFE AND PERSONAL LIBERTY

d)                Article 22 gives the Rights for PROTECTION AGAINST ARREST AND DETENTION IN CERTAIN CASES, in some unfair and unjust manner



3.       Under the Rights against Exploitation,



a)                Article 23 deals with PROHIBITION OF TRAFFIC IN HUMAN BEINGS AND FORCED LABOUR

b)                Article 24 deals with PROHIBITION OF EMPLOYMENT OF CHILDREN IN FACTORIES, etc


4.       Right to Freedom of Religion – Articles 25 to 28

5.       Cultural and Educational Rights – Articles 29 and 30

6.       Right to Constitutional Remedies – Articles 32 to 35


DUTIES OF INDIVIDUALS

 The Duties of individual Citizens of India, have been laid out in Article 51A, Part IVA of the Constitution, as Fundamental Duties.  These were not there in the Original version of the Constitution framed and adopted by the Constituent Assembly.  These were inserted by the Constitution (Forty-second Amendment) Act passed by the Parliament in 1976.  Those read as –

 PART  IVA


FUNDAMENTAL DUTIES

 51A.    Fundamental duties.

 It shall be the duty of every citizen of India –

a)                to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the National Flag and National Anthem;

b)                to cherish and follow the noble ideals which inspired our National Struggle for Freedom;

c)                 to uphold and protect the sovereignty, unity and integrity of India;

d)                to defend the Country and render National Service when called upon to do so;

e)                to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India transcending religious, linguistic and regional or sectional diversities; to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women;

f)                  to value and preserve the rich heritage of our composite culture;

g)                to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wild life, and to have compassion for living creatures;

h)                 to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform;

i)                   to safeguard public property and to abjure violence;

j)                   to strive towards excellence in all spheres of individual and collective activity so that the Nation constantly rises to higher levels of endeavour and achievement.

All these Rights available to every Citizen and the People of India, are equally available for the SC&ST Dalits!


SC&ST DALIT RIGHTS



SC&ST Dalit Rights are Specific Rights, but not Undue Rights or Exceptional Rights, or Unreasonable Rights, seen in any way, or in any manner!  These do not make the Citizens any way special or superior, or endows them with any Extraordinary Rights.  They are the Rights, which are due to them, as human beings, but denied historically over the ages and many millenniums.  And many of the Rights are still being denied to them, in different parts of the Country still, to different extents, and also different times and different occasions.

Apart from the general Constitutional Rights available for every Citizen, SC/ST have some Specific Rights guaranteed to him/her in the Constitution.  These are also not really Special, Exceptional, and are in no-way violative of the general Principles of the Constitution, or the Basic Philosophy of Equality in the Constitution.  They are only Special Classes, to Emphasise the Rights of SC&ST Dalits!  In other words, they are only part of General, very Ordinary Rights.  They are the basic ones, available to every-other Citizen in India.  But, they have been Specifically Built into the Constitution, to emphasise and doubly make sure that the Basic and Fundamental Rights of the Citizens, are extended to all.  Yes, to all without any exception, including SC&ST Dalits!  The Special Clauses ensure that at least Basic Fundamental Rights are also available to the SC&ST Dalits of India in India, through those Constitutional Mandates or Provisions.  That, because of historical Reasons, and the traditional practices to deny every Right to SC&STS!  It is to prevent such denial, those Special Provisions for SC&ST Dalits, have been specially drafted and adopted by the Founding Fathers of the Indian Nation, in the Constitution.  Special Provisions for SC&ST Dalits, being Basic and Fundamental, can not should not and must never be either abridged or set aside or repealed by anyone under any circumstances!

All Rights and Duties always remain as silent Provisions interned in the Constitution.  It is unto the People to realise them.  They have to make the Govts to work, and ensure that they do their Duties and they get their Rights.  Where necessary they have to fight for them, go to the Courts to agitate for them, and struggle in the Society to retain them.  As Baba Saheb said, in his last speech in the Constituent Assembly on 25th November 1949, while moving the Draft Constitution for adoption, the success or effectiveness of any Law and Constitution depends upon those who work them.

Yet, even today, SC&ST Dalits don’t have those crucial Rights of  Governance, Self-Governance, Survival without disturbances and harassments, Justice and Peace - Social Cultural Political Economic and Educational.

And it had been rightly said,

Rights can not Descend on a People!

The People shall have to rise up, to get the Rights!  

That Dictum always holds good, as far as enjoying the benefits from any Rights! 




DALIT RIGHTS
  1. The general rights offered by the Constitution to all citizens.
  2. The special rights and protections offered to Dalits by the Presidential Order of 1950.
  3. The exclusion of Christian dalits from the special rights and protections of #2 above.
1. General Rights in the Constitution
The Constitution of India, which came into force on  26 January 1950.  provides the following fundamental rights to every citizen:-
WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens
  1. Justice, social, economic and political;
  2. Liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;
  3. Equality of status and of opportunity, and to promote among them all fraternity assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity of the nation.   Equality of status and of opportunity, and to promote among them all fraternity assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity of the nation.  
Compensatory discrimination was one of the means chosen to achieve those ends. Its purpose is  to promote equalization by offsetting historically accumulated inequalities. The Government of India has used compensatory discrimination as a means of achieving greater equality by deliberately overcoming some of those historically accumulated disabilities from which Dalits have long suffered.
The Constitution provides some preferential options to the Dalits who for so many centuries have been deprived of their rights  in Indian society.    It was    Dr. Ambedkar, himself a Dalit and the chief architect of the Indian Constitution, who really formulated the provision of compensatory discrimination.

Article 14 :   Equality before the Law
The State shall not deny to any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India.

Article 15 : Prohibition of Discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth
(1) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.
(2) No citizen shall, on ground only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them, be subject to any disability, liability, restriction or condition with regard to -
(a) access to shops, public restaurants, hotels and places of public entertainment; or
(b) the use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resort maintained whole or partly out of State funds or dedicated to the use of the general public.
(3) Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any special provision for women and children.
(4) Nothing in this article or in clause (2) or article 29 shall prevent the State from making any special provision for the advancement of any socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes.
(5) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.
(6) No citizen shall, on ground only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them, be subject to any disability, liability, restriction or condition with regard to -
(a) access to shops, public restaurants, hotels and places of public entertainment; or
(b) the use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resort maintained whole or partly out of State funds or dedicated to the use of the general public.
(7) Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any special provision for women and children.
(8) Nothing in this article or in clause (2) or article 29 shall prevent the State from making any special provision for the advancement of any socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes.
Article 16, Equality of Opportunity in matters of public employment
(1) There shall be equality of opportunity for all citizens in matters relating to employment or appointment to any office under the State.
(2) No citizen shall, on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, descent, place of birth, residence or any of them, be ineligible for, or discriminated against in respect of, any employment or office under the State.
(3) Nothing in this article shall prevent Parliament from making any law prescribing, in regard to a class or classes of employment or appointment to an office under the Government of, or any local or other authority within, a State or Union territory, any requirement as to residence within that State or Union territory prior to such employment or appointment.
(4) Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any provision for the reservation of appointments or posts in favour of any backward class of citizens which, in the opinion of the State, is not adequately represented in the services under the State.
(4A) Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any provision for reservation in matters of promotion to any class or classes of posts in the services under the State in favour of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes which, in the opinion of the State, are not adequately represented in the services under the State.

Article 17,  Abolition of Untouchability 'Untouchability' is abolished and its practice in any form is forbidden. The enforcement of any disability arising out of 'Untouchability' shall be an offence punishable in accordance with law.

Article 25, Freedom of Conscience and Free profession, practice and propagation of religion
(1) Subject to public order, morality and health and to the other provisions of this Part, all persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right freely to profess, practice and propagate religion.
(2) Nothing in this article shall affect the operation of any existing law or prevent the State from making any law -
(a) regulating or restricting any economic, financial, political or other secular activity which may be associated with religious practice;
(b) providing for social welfare and reform or the throwing open of Hindu religious institutions of a public character to all classes and sections of Hindus.
Explanation I: The wearing and carrying of kirpans shall be deemed to be included in the profession of the Sikh religion.
Explanation II: In sub-Clause (b) of clause (2), the reference to Hindus shall be construed as including a reference to persons professing the Sikh, Jaina or Buddhist religion, and the reference to Hindu religious institutions shall be construed accordingly.
2 .   Special Rights Under the Presidential Order, 1950,  known as  the Constitution  (SCHEDULED CASTE)    Order, no.19, Aug.10, 1950

Political Rights and Privileges
Article 330, Reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the House of the People
(1) Seats shall be reserved in the House of the People for -
(a) the Scheduled Castes;
(b) the Scheduled Tribes except the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam; and
(c) the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam.
(2) The number of seats reserved in any State or Union territory for the Scheduled Castes or the Scheduled Tribes under clause (1) shall bear, as nearly as may be, the same proportion to the total number of seats allotted to that State or Union territory in the House of the People as the population of the Scheduled Castes in the State or Union territory or of the Scheduled Tribes in the State or Union territory or part of the State or Union territory, as the case may be, in respect of which seats are so reserved, bears to the total population of the State or Union territory.
(3)
Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (2), the number of seats reserved in the House of the People for the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam shall bear to the total number of seats allotted to that State a proportion not less than the population of the Scheduled Tribes in the said autonomous districts bears to the total population of the State.
Explanation: In this article and in article 332, the expression "population" means the population as ascertained at the last preceding census of which the relevant figures have been published:
Provided that the reference in this Explanation to the last preceding census of which the relevant figures have been published shall, until the relevant figures for the first census taken after the year 2000 have been published, be construed as a reference to the 1971 census.


Article 332, Reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assemblies of the States
(1) Seats shall be reserved for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes, except the Scheduled Tribes in the autonomous districts of Assam, in the Legislative Assembly of every State.
(2) Seats shall be reserved also for the autonomous districts in the Legislative Assembly of the State of Assam.
(3) The number of seats reserved for the Scheduled Castes or the Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assembly of any State under clause (1) shall bear, as nearly as may be, the same proportion to the total number of seats in the Assembly as the population of the Scheduled Castes in the State or of the Scheduled Tribes in the State or part of the State, as the case may be, in respect of which seats are so reserved, bears to the total population of the State.
(3A) Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (3), until the taking effect, under article 170, of the re-adjustment, on the basis of the first census after the year 2000, of the number of seats in the Legislative Assemblies of the States of Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Nagaland, the seats which shall be reserved for the Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assembly of any such State shall be, -
(a) if all the seats in the Legislative Assembly of such State in existence on the date of coming into force of the Constitution (Fifty-seventh Amendment) Act, 1987 (hereafter in this clause referred to as the existing Assembly) are held by members of the Scheduled Tribes, all the seats except one;
(b) in any other case, such number of seats as bears to the total number of seats, a proportion not less than the number (as on the said date) of members belonging to the Scheduled Tribes in the existing Assembly bears to the total number of seats in the existing Assembly.
(3B) Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (3), until the re-adjustment, under article 170, takes effect on the basis of the first census after the year 2000, of the number of seats in the Legislative Assembly of the State of Tripura, the seats which shall be reserved for the Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assembly shall be, such number of seats as bears to the total number of seats, a proportion not less than the number, as on the date of coming into force of the Constitution (Seventy-
second Amendment) Act, 1992, of members belonging to the Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assembly in existence on the said date bears to the total number of seats in that Assembly.
(4) The number of seats reserved for an autonomous district in the Legislative Assembly of the State of Assam shall bear to the total number of seats in that Assembly a proportion not less than the population of the district bears to the total population of the State.
(5) The constituencies for the seats reserved for any autonomous district of Assam shall not comprise any area outside that district.
(6) No person who is not a member of a Scheduled Tribe of any autonomous district of the State of Assam shall be eligible for election to the Legislative Assembly of the State from any constituency of that district.
The second important element in the compensatory discrimination is found in Article 335
Economic and Social Rights and Privileges

Article 335, Claims of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to services and postsThe claims of the members of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes shall be taken into consideration, consistently with the maintenance of efficiency of administration, in the making of appointments to services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or of a State.
When taken with Article 16(4), this forms the basis for reserving jobs in government service for Dalits, Scheduled Tribes and "Other Backward Classes".

Article 16, Equality of opportunity in matters of public employment 


(4)
Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any provision for the reservation of appointments or posts in favour of any backward class of citizens which, in the opinion of the State, is not adequately represented in the services under the State.
(4A)
Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any provision for reservation in matters of promotion to any class or classes of posts in the services under the State in favour of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes which, in the opinion of the State, are not adequately represented in the services under the State.
The other important element in the compensatory discrimination system was both the reservation of seats in educational institutions as well as the provision of financial assistance.  This was set forth under the Directive Principle of State Policy in Article 46:

Article 46, Promotion of educational and economic interests of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and other weaker sections
The State shall promote with special care the educational and economic interests of the weaker sections of the people, and in particular, of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes, and shall protect them from social injustice and all forms of exploitation.
The Constitution also provided for a special officer (Article 338) for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes as well as for a Commission to investigate the condition of the Backward Classes (Article 340). Both of these were appointed by and responsible to the President.

Article 338, National Commission for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes
There shall be a Special Officer for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to be appointed by the President.
  1. It shall be the duty of the Special Officer to investigate all matters relating to the safeguards provided for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes under the Constitution and report to the President upon the working of those safeguards at such intervals as the President may direct, and the President shall cause all such reports to be laid before each House of Parliament.
Article 340, Appointment of a Commission to investigate the conditions of backward classes
(1) The President may by order appoint a Commission consisting of such persons as he thinks fit to investigate the conditions of socially and educationally backward classes within the territory of India and the difficulties under which they labour and to make recommendations as to the steps that should be taken by the Union or any State to remove such difficulties and to improve their condition and as to the grants that should be made for the purpose by the Union or any State and the conditions subject to which such grants should be made, and the order appointing such Commission shall define the procedure to be followed by the Commission.
(2) A Commission so appointed shall investigate the matters referred to them and present to the President a report setting out the facts as found by them and making such recommendations as they think proper.
(3) The President shall cause a copy of the report so presented together with a memorandum explaining the action taken thereon to be laid before each House of Parliament.
The Constitution of India gave a special mandate to the President of India under Article 341 (1) to specify the castes, races under a Schedule. The castes as listed become eligible for the purposes of discriminatory  protections and favours designed for that purpose.

3. The Exclusion of Christian Dalits from Special Rights and Protections .
Article 341 (1) empowers the President of India, "...by public notification, (to) specify the castes, races or tribes or parts or of groups within castes, races or tribes which shall, for the purpose of this Constitution be deemed to be Scheduled Castes." But once the President has issued such an order, saying who can be included in the list or schedule,   "Parliament may ...include in or exclude from the list of Scheduled Castes ... any ... group ..."
The third paragraph of this Order reads:
"Notwithstanding anything contained in paragraph 2, no person who professes a religion different from Hindu, shall be deemed to be a member of a Scheduled Caste."  
In making this exclusion, the Indian Parliament had the excuse of following   the Government of India (Scheduled Castes) Order of 1936 in which the British had excluded the Christian dalits because these were already enjoying rights  and protection as a minority community. This third paragraph was changed in 1956 by Parliament to "Hindu or Sikh" and again in May 1990 it was changed by the Parliament to "Hindu or Sikh or Buddhist."
Thus, dalits who have converted to Christianity have lost the constitutional safeguards given to the Scheduled Castes of three other religions. This has increased their vulnerability. 



FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS



General


12. territory of India or under the control of the Government of India.


13. (a) “law” includes any Ordinance, order, bye-law, rule, regulation, notification, custom or usage having in the territory of India the force of law;b) “laws in force” includes laws passed or made by a Legislature or other competent authority in the territory of India before the commencement of this Constitution and not previously repealed, notwithstanding that any such law or any part thereof may not be then in operation either at all or in particular areas.

(2) The State shall not make any law which takes away or abridges the rights conferred by this Part and any law made in contravention of this clause shall, to the extent of the contravention, be void.



(3) In this article, unless the context otherwise requires,—



(

(

  [(4) Nothing in this article shall apply to any amendment of this Constitution made under article 368.] Right to Equality
  The State shall not deny to any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India.  

14.fundamental rights.


Right against Exploitation
(2) Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from imposing compulsory service for public purposes, and in imposing such service the State shall not make any discrimination on grounds only of religion, race, caste or class or any of them.

23. (1) Traffic in human beings and begar and other similar forms of forced labour are prohibited and any contravention of this provision shall be an offence punishable in accordance with law.
24.
employed to work in any factory or mine or engaged in
any other hazardous employment.
No child below the age of fourteen years shall be
http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/asiapcf/04/30/india.caste/index.html
SC&ST DALIT’S RIGHTS

RIGHTS

What Rights?

Before we look into or talk of SCsSTs, or SC&ST Dalits, or SC&ST Dalit Rights, let us think about Rights!  What are these Rights?  To understand the Rights better, let us first ask ‘What are Rights?’ and ‘What Rights We Individuals – Dalits or not – have?’  For that matter, What Right or Rights any Individual anywhere in the World, whether in India or abroad – be that in AmericaCanadaEngland or anywhere in Europe or elsewhere has?  And, what are the Source or Sources of these Rights?  Can there be any end to these Rights?  We have to ask these Questions for a specific Reason, with a particular Purpose, if we are to understand the beginning or origin and end of SC&ST Dalit Rights!

TYPES OF RIGHTS

What are the different types of Rights that one can have?

Why many!  Some examples are –

1.       Human Rights - Rights to Live, Dignity, Individual Freedom, Privacy, Equal Wages at least for the same jobs done at the same time, Equal Rights and so on!
2.       Civil Rights     - Rights to have Access to Public Places, Equal Civic Facilities etc
3.       Social Rights  - Rights to Equality, Equal Treatments, Fraternity, gather in a public place, speak and laugh publicly etc
4.       Cultural Rights  -    Rights to Speak without fear, Write, Sing, Dance, Paint, dress, eat what one likes etc
5.       Religious Rights    -    Rights to believe, opt, embrace, convert oneself and convert others, preach and propagate any Religion of ones choice, quit, and not believe or practice or belong and criticise rationally, logically, reasonably and legally any Religion affecting any individual.
6.       Educational Rights -    Rights to Education, Learning, Admissions to Schools, Colleges, Universities, Courses, different Subjects etc
7.       Political Rights  -    Rights to Vote or Universal Adult Franchise, Liberty etc
8.       Constitutional Rights  -    Rights for Protection from Discrimination, Justice etc
9.       Legal Rights   - Rights to move Courts, Legal Protection etc
10.   Land Rights    - Rights to own Lands, acquire Land, acquire any Land, sell or dispose-off any land to any person one chooses or any purpose of ones liking, etc.  That includes the right to enjoy the land, benefits accruing from the land, Rights to plough and Cultivate the Land, and harvest and market the Produce
11.   Economic Rights   -    Rights to acquire, buy, bequeath, will-away, gift, sell, dispose-off, hold Property, do business, take up any Profession or Occupation, receive and adequate and full Remuneration for Work and Services
12.   Fundamental Rights-  Rights recognised by the State as Fundamental to all People and every Person, without any exception
13.   Basic Rights   - Rights to food, shelter, housing etc
14.   Natural Rights   -    Rights based on Nature and Natural Justice
15.   Special Rights   -    Rights Specially granted to any Group or Professions etc based on their Responsible Certified Competence, without violating others’ Rights or Infringing other Liberties
16.   Professional Rights    -    Rights of a Professional to carry out the Profession in due Professional Manner as Certified and approved by the Profession, and its Professional Ethics
17.   Sovereign Rights   -    Rights of the Sovereign – the King or Queen in the Past, hence Sovereign, but the Citizen or the People these days
18.   Remedial Rights     -    Rights to Remedy any wrong, or violation of any Right or Rights

And there could be many more such Rights!
And what is/are the Source(s) of these Rights?
That need not always be the Constitution!  We must clearly Remember that!
But any Right, its utility, usefulness and capacity to benefit from it, depends upon the vigilance and capacity of the People.  That People must, particularly guard against their transgression, violation, abridgement, revocation etc.  They must be careful to preserve the Rights, and extra careful to ensure that the Rights continue, and remains with them in future also!


STRANGE AND FUNNY RIGHTS!

India, is Unique!  That because, it is a strange Country!  Here in India, there are many funny Rights.  And what is more, there is many strange and specific, cruel and inhuman Denial of Rights.  They don’t stand to any logic reason or rational thinking.

We have the following Strange Rights, that are Reserved only for a few, and denied for most others.  And there are some Specific Rights, which can not be exercised by some.  And that some, are in hundreds of millions of People!  What is more surprising is that, the millions who are denied Rights, are the most productive people.  They are the backbones of the Nation.  They are the engines of economy, and prime-movers of all developments.

Some of the funny Rights are –
1.       Rights to get Water
2.       Rights to use Public Facilities to take Bath
3.       Rights to Dress
4.       Rights to Style of Dressing
5.       Rights to Hair-do
6.       Rights to Jewellery
7.       Rights to See and be Seen
8.       Rights to Hear and Listen certain things
9.       Rights to Approach and Proximity
10.   Rights to Walk or Drive through the Streets, where cats dogs and pigs roam freely
11.   Rights to Wear Slippers and Shoes or any Footwear
12.   Rights to Sit before others
13.   Rights to Touch
14.   Rights to Dine-with
15.   Rights to take Coffee and Tea or Water in Restaurants, Hotels, and wayside Shops
16.   Rights of Acceptability
17.   Rights to Marry
18.   Rights to Access even the Cemetery – Burial Grounds
19.   Right of Way to ones own Residence
20.   Rights to move out of the Villages and to nearby Towns and Markets, for Sale of Surplus Produce, Jobs etc
21.   Rights to Gather and Speak-out the Mind openly and boldly, without fear of loosing employment, jobs, earnings, physical safety, and even life of the person and of the family members
22.   Rights to Meet Others

Most of the above Rights are denied to SC&ST Dalits, specifically and particularly.  Hence, some of these Rights, have been Guaranteed to the SC&ST Dalits, by the Constitution, in a general manner, as the Rights of all Citizens of India.  But they have been built, particularly into the Constitution, only for the specific purpose of ensuring that SC&ST Dalits get them.  Some Rights have been Specifically included in the Constitution, as Specific Rights, exclusively for SC&ST Dalits, to doubly ensure that the SC&STDalits are not denied of them.

Thus Rights are varied; sometimes they are so basic, that it in fact appears to be extremely strange and funny, even to mention about them as Rights.  And the most Obvious and Explicit Rights are those conferred by, or specifically built into the Constitution of the Nation!

CONSTITUTION OF INDIA

Constitution of India was drafted by the Constituent Assembly of India.  It was originally elected before Independence for the United India.  It met first on the 9th of December 1946.  It worked for two years eleven months and eighteen days, before it adopted the Constitution.  The Constituent Assembly had held eleven sessions.  First six Sessions were spent in passing the Objectives Resolution, and Consideration of the Reports of various Committees including the one on Fundamental Rights.  The seventh to eleventh sessions debated the Draft Constitution.

After Partition of the Country, on 15th August 1947, the Members elected to the Constituent Assembly from Areas that remained with Indian Union, continued with the work of framing Free India’s Constitution.  All those elected from the areas that fell into the newly created Pakistan went to Pakistan, or resigned.  Baba Saheb Dr BR Ambedkar, elected in a by-election from the constituency vacated by Mandal, lost his Membership of the Constituent Assembly, as that fell into East-Pakistan, the present day Bangladesh. Baba Saheb was thankfully re-elected to the Constituent Assembly, from the seat vacated for him by Jayakar, of the Congress Party.

In the Constituent Assembly, Baba Saheb was also elected to the Drafting Committee of the Constitution, and ultimately became the Chairman of the Drafting Committee.  As Chairman, he moved the Draft Constitution, defended or redrafted every provision of the Constitution. 

The Constitution finally was moved by Baba Saheb, for adoption on 25th November 1949.  And the Constitution was approved on 26th November 1949 Every year, Supreme Court of India and the legal fraternity celebrate 26th of November as Law Day.  The Constitution of India formally came into effect on 26th Jan 1950.  That day, free India became Sovereign Democratic Republic, and every year we remember and gratefully celebrate the day as the Republic Day of India.  And after Constituent (Forty-second Amendment) Act passed by Parliament, the Nation is said to be a Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic.

The Drafting Committee, to prepare and accept the Draft Constitution, and presentation before the Constituent Assembly of India, for Consideration, was elected on 29th August 1947.  It met first, on 30th August 1947.  Its sessions lasted for 141 days in preparing the Draft Constitution.  The Draft by the Constitutional Adviser had 243 Articles and 13 Schedules.  The Drafting Committee worked on it, and presented to the Constituent Assembly, a Draft Constitution with 315 Articles and 8 Schedules.  At the end of Consideration of the Draft Constitution by the Constituent Assembly, the Articles were 386.  In its final form, there were 395 Articles and 8 Schedules.  Amendments tabled by Members were about 7,635.  Of those, the ones actually moved were 2,473.

In comparison, the American Convention, met on 25th May 1787, and completed the Constitution with only seven Articles and 21 Sections in the first four, within four months, on17th Sept 1787.  The Constitutional Convention of Canada assembled on 10th October 1884, and finished its task in two years and five months, with 147 Articles, by March 1867.  The Australian Constitutional Convention, was convened in March 1891 and finished its work on 9th July 1900, with 128 Articles.  That, after a period of nine years.  All of them completed their work, without considering any amendments.

We must always remember that, Constitution is the basic Law of a Country.  It provides specifically to the Citizens particular Rights, defines their Duties, and delineates the Responsibilities of every authority, official, institution and individual, living in the Country and governed by the Constitution.  All Authorities and Institutions, derive their existence and power from the Constitution of the Land.  Hence, every one of them, has to work and function within the ambit of that Constitution.  All others, like the Authorities and Institutions, have to exist and operate, within the limits and boundaries of the Constitution.

The Preamble of the Constitution is more significant.  For, the Preamble reflects the Sole of any Constitution.  It embodies the Ideals and Aspirations of thePeople who made the Constitution, adopted and accepted it for their governance, and future.  It is the most significant Part of the Constitution, and can be amended like any other Provision in the Constitution, as long as that does not affect the basic character, principles and spirit of the Constitution.  All Laws, Practices and Procedures preceding, and all those that existed before the Constitution, are repealed if they are in contradiction and are violative of any Provisions of the Constitution.



The PREAMBLE of the Indian Constitution, reads as follows –

THE CONSTITUTION OF INDIA

PREAMBLE

  WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVERIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens :

  JUSTICE, social, economic and political;

  LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;

  EQUALITY of status and opportunity;

and to promote among them all

  FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and unity and integrity of the Nation;

  IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this twenty-sixth day of November 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION.


Apart from the PREAMBLE, the Constitution has 22 main Parts with 23 Chapters, 395 Articles and Nine Schedules.  These provide to every citizen, many Rights and Freedoms.  And naturally, with Rights and Freedoms, come many Duties.

Indian Constitution is one of the largest written Constitution in the World.  It has in it many of the noblest concepts, human mind had conceived of, before it was drafted.


RIGHTS & DUTIES OF INDIVIDUALS

The Indian Constitution is one of the largest written Constitution, drafted after the path breaking and epoch-making French Revolution, American Revolution and Russian Revolution.  It also came after Industrial Revolution in Europe, the Liberal Thinkers and their Ideas.  And it had been framed long after the Unification of the German and Italian Nations by Bismarck and Garibaldi.  Therefore, every Progressive and Noble Thoughts of the World have been adopted and built into Indian Constitution.  And in the words of Baba Saheb, framer of the Constitution - not to do so would have only been irrational.  The IndianConstitution, naturally had derived a lot from the unwritten British Constitution.  It had adopted the British Parliamentary System, British Legal System and Principles of Administration.  And it had also incorporated many main Provisions drawn from various Govt of India Acts, made by the Imperial British for India and Indian People, and to the British Colonial Govt in India for its Governance.  Those were only to be expected.

The Rights Freedoms and Duties of Individuals, as Citizens of the Country, had been built into the Constitution in various Parts Chapters and Articles.  It will be a Study of the whole Constitution, all the Parts, Articles and Schedules, if we are to talk of all the Rights and Duties.  For almost all the Articles and Provisions such as the Preamble and Schedule hold many promises and hopes to the Citizens, and even to other Individuals.

As we had discussed earlier, some of the Rights are specific and special for specified segments of the Society – those who are otherwise marginalised discriminated exploited and suppressed.  These are specifically in addition, and apart from those clearly laid out, as the Rights and Duties of all Citizens.

The Rights one can derive, depends upon the way the People or Individual agitate demand legislate and govern themselves, before the authorities, the political parties, elected peoples representatives, in the Legislatives and Parliament, before the political executives in the Govts, and ultimately before the Govts and Courts.  However, the significant and apparently clear Rights and Duties are, specifically discussed below.




RIGHTS OF INDIVIDUALS

The Constitution has been made by Indians for Indians and their Govts.  Sovereignty of the Nation, lies with the People.  In fact it is the People, who give the Rights to others, to all Institutions - public and private - every individual in the Country, Citizens or not, and to themselves.  The People, also provide specific Directions to Govts, Political Parties and their Members, who come forward to represent them, form the Govts, and help Govern the Nation.

SOURCE OF RIGHTS!

Everyone’s Rights in the Country, start from –

1.       Citizenship of the Country
2.       The hopes and expectations that flow from –

      Part IV DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY

However, the Constitution Part IV on DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY, is only a Directive and guideline for the State, Parliament and Legislatives, Political Executives, Govts, the Bureaucracy and Planners, and to the People.  The DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY, do not give any direct rights and powers to the individuals.  People can not, in the normal circumstances go to Courts to demand any of the DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES OF STATE POLICY, as their Rights or Dues, or ask the Courts to enforce them.

Apart from these there are specific Fundamental Rights.  They are large, specific, significant, essential and important to any Citizen in any part of the Country.  In fact, most of these are needed by any Citizen of any Nation living in any part of the World. 

The Fundamental Rights are contained in exclusive Part III of the Constitution.  They are the –

1.       Right to Equality – Articles 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18
2.       Right to Freedom – Articles 19 to 22
3.       Right against Exploitation – Articles 23 and 24
4.       Right to Freedom of Religion – Articles 25 to 28
5.       Cultural and Educational Rights – Articles 29 and 30
6.       Right to Constitutional Remedies – Articles 32 to 35

Right to Property, and the concerned Article 31, relating to Compulsory Acquisition of Property, was omitted and repealed by the Constitution (Forty-fourth Amendment) Act 1978.

Saving of Certain Laws, with related Articles 31A to 31 D were added by various Constitutional Amendments.  However, Article 31 D wrt Saving of Laws in respect of Anti-National Activities was subsequently repealed by the Constitutional (Forty-third Amendment) Act of 1977.

Rights have no meaning at all, unless one can force those others, or authorities or the Govts to give the Rights being denied, withheld or delayed, deliberately or otherwise, to yield and give the Rights.  Or one should be able ask or force the Govt and other authorities to intervene, and ensure or force those who are denying, withholding or standing in the way of the Rights, discipline them, and get the Rights.  Hence, the Constitution provides, vide Article 32, remedies for enforcement of Rights conferred by this Part.  This Article 32, in fact is the most important provision of the Constitution, forming part of Part III on Fundamental Rights.  It provides every Citizen and every individual, the Right to move the Supreme Court by appropriate proceedings for the enforcement of the Rights.

Other Relevant Provisions are –

1.       Under the Right to Equality,

a)                Article 14 provides the Right of EQUALITY BEFORE LAW
b)                Article 15 provides Rights for PROHIBITION OF DISCRIMINATION ON GROUNDS OF RELIGION, RACE, CASTE, SEX OR PLACE OF BIRTH
c)                 Article 16 gives the Right to EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY IN MATTERS OF PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT
d)                Article  17 deals with Rights associated with the ABOLITION OF UNTOUCHABILITY, and
e)                Article 18 deals with Rights associated with the ABOLITION OF TITLES

2.       Under the Right to Freedom,

a)                Article 19 on PROTECTION OF CERTAIN RIGHTS REGARDING FREEDOM OF SPEECH etc, it is said that,
(1)    all citizens shall have the right –
(a)    to freedom of speech and expression
(b)    to assemble peaceably and without arms
(c)    to form association or unions
(d)    to move freely throughout the territory of India
(e)    to reside and settle in any part of the territory of
and,
(f)      to practice any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business

At the same-time vide part (2) of the same Article 19, the Constitution allows the Operation of any existing law, permits the States to make any law to impose restrictions on the above rights, that can be considered as reasonable.

b)                Article 20 gives the Rights of PROTECTION IN RESPECT OF CONVICTION FOR OFFENCES, in some unfair or unjust manner
c)                 Article 21 gives the Rights of PROTECTION OF LIFE AND PERSONAL LIBERTY
d)                Article 22 gives the Rights for PROTECTION AGAINST ARREST AND DETENTION IN CERTAIN CASES, in some unfair and unjust manner

3.       Under the Rights against Exploitation,

a)     Article 23 deals with PROHIBITION OF TRAFFIC IN HUMAN BEINGS AND FORCED LABOUR
b) Article 24 deals with PROHIBITION OF EMPLOYMENT OF CHILDREN IN FACTORIES, etc

4.       Right to Freedom of Religion – Articles 25 to 28
5.       Cultural and Educational Rights – Articles 29 and 30
6.       Right to Constitutional Remedies – Articles 32 to 35




DUTIES OF INDIVIDUALS

The Duties of individual Citizens of India, have been laid out in Article 51A, Part IVA of the Constitution, as Fundamental Duties.  These were not there in the Original version of the Constitution framed and adopted by the Constituent Assembly.  These were inserted by the Constitution (Forty-second Amendment) Act passed by the Parliament in 1976.  Those read as –

PART  IVA

FUNDAMENTAL DUTIES

51A.    Fundamental duties.

It shall be the duty of every citizen of India –

a)                to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the National Flag and National Anthem;
b)                to cherish and follow the noble ideals which inspired our National Struggle for Freedom;
c)                 to uphold and protect the sovereignty, unity and integrity of India;
d)                to defend the Country and render National Service when called upon to do so;
e)                to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India transcending religious, linguistic and regional or sectional diversities; to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women;
f)                  to value and preserve the rich heritage of our composite culture;
g)                to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wild life, and to have compassion for living creatures;
h)                 to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform;
i)                   to safeguard public property and to abjure violence;
j)                   to strive towards excellence in all spheres of individual and collective activity so that the Nation constantly rises to higher levels of endeavour and achievement.

All these Rights available to every Citizen and the People of India, are equally available for the SC&ST Dalits!

SC&ST DALIT RIGHTS

SC&ST Dalit Rights are Specific Rights, but not Undue Rights or Exceptional Rights, or Unreasonable Rights, seen in any way, or in any manner!  These do not make the Citizens any way special or superior, or endows them with any Extraordinary Rights.  They are the Rights, which are due to them, as human beings, but denied historically over the ages and many millenniums.  And many of the Rights are still being denied to them, in different parts of the Country still, to different extents, and also different times and different occasions.

Apart from the general Constitutional Rights available for every Citizen, SC/ST have some Specific Rights guaranteed to him/her in the Constitution.  These are also not really Special, Exceptional, and are in no-way violative of the general Principles of the Constitution, or the Basic Philosophy of Equality in the Constitution.  They are only Special Classes, to Emphasise the Rights of SC&ST Dalits!  In other words, they are only part of General, very Ordinary Rights. They are the basic ones, available to every-other Citizen in India.  But, they have been Specifically Built into the Constitution, to emphasise and doubly make sure that the Basic and Fundamental Rights of the Citizens, are extended to all.  Yes, to all without any exception, including SC&ST Dalits!  The Special Clauses ensure that at least Basic Fundamental Rights are also available to the SC&ST Dalits of India in India, through those Constitutional Mandates or Provisions.  That, because of historical Reasons, and the traditional practices to deny every Right to SC&STS!  It is to prevent such denial, those Special Provisions for SC&ST Dalits, have been specially drafted and adopted by the Founding Fathers of the Indian Nation, in the Constitution.  Special Provisions for SC&ST Dalits, being Basic and Fundamental, can not should not and must never be either abridged or set aside or repealed by anyone under any circumstances!

All Rights and Duties always remain as silent Provisions interned in the Constitution.  It is unto the People to realise them.  They have to make the Govts to work, and ensure that they do their Duties and they get their Rights.  Where necessary they have to fight for them, go to the Courts to agitate for them, and struggle in the Society to retain them.  As Baba Saheb said, in his last speech in the Constituent Assembly on 25th November 1949, while moving the Draft Constitution for adoption, the success or effectiveness of any Law and Constitution depends upon those who work them.

Yet, even today, SC&ST Dalits don’t have those crucial Rights of  Governance, Self-Governance, Survival without disturbances and harassments, Justice and Peace - Social Cultural Political Economic and Educational.

And it had been rightly said,

Rights can not Descend on a People!
The People shall have to rise up, to get the Rights! 

That Dictum always holds good, as far as enjoying the benefits from any Rights!


Mahadalits & Dalits of Bihar
Dalits constitute nearly 15 percent of Bihar's population of 83 million. The poorest Dalits were declared Maha Dalits in Bihar. A government commission has identified 21 of the 22 Dalit sub castes, including Musahar, Bhuiyan, Dom, and Nat as Maha Dalits. They constitute 31 percent of the Dalit population in the state. The commission has not included four Dalit castes - Paswan, Pasi, Dhobi and Chamar - in the Maha Dalit category. These four constitute 69 percent of the Dalit population in the state. A few months ago Nitish Kumar announced a special package of Rs.3 billion ($76 million) for the socio-economic development of the poorest among Dalits. He set up a commission in August last year for the welfare of certain Dalit castes that are socially and educationally more backward than others. Bihar is the first state to constitute a commission to study the status of the neglected Subcastes among Dalits and suggest ways to uplift them. The commission in its first interim report to the government a few months ago painted a bleak picture of the Dalit sub-castes. The report said there were no high school teachers or senior officials from these castes in the state despite reservations in government jobs for them.
    • 21 Mahadalits Castes -Bantar, Bauri, Bhogta, Bhuiyan, Chaupal, Dabgar, Dom, Ghasi, Halalkhor, Hadi, Kanjar, Kuraria, Lalbegi, Mushar, Nat, Pan, Rajwar and Turi., Pasi, DhobiChamar
    • 1 Dalit Caste Paswan

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