Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles
The fundamental rights and directive principles are described in part 3 and part 4 of the Indian constitution respectively. They are two sides of the same coin which complement each other and together comprise the "conscience" of the Indian constitution. The fundamental rights ensure political democracy while the directive principles ensure economic and social democracy. Let us understand how they differ from each other!
Fundamental rights can be described as the basic rights guaranteed to the citizens of India under the constitution of India. These rights are written in part 3 of the Indian Constitution and ensure civil liberty to every citizen of the country so that people can live peacefully. They also prevent the state from snatching the freedom of the citizens of the country.
Fundamental rights equally apply to all citizens of the country irrespective of their race, caste, creed, sex, religion, place of birth etc. Violation of the fundamental rights is a punishable offence under the Indian Penal Code (IPC), based on the discretion of the judiciary. The fundamental rights as recognized by the Indian Constitution are as follows:
Directive principles are written in Part 4, Article 36-51 of the Indian constitution. They contain directives or guidelines to be followed by the state while establishing laws and policies. The legislative and executive powers of a state are exercised in accordance with the directive principles of the Indian Constitution.
The directive principles follow the basic philosophy of the Constitution of India like an overall development of the nation, social justice, economic welfare, foreign policy etc. However, the violation of directive principles is not a punishable offence. They cannot be enforced in a court of law and state cannot be sued for not following the same. The directive principles are divided into three categories: Socialistic Directives, Gandhian Directives, and Liberal Intellectual Directives. They aim to create a positive socio-economic environment to help the citizens live a better life.
Based on the above information, some of the key differences between fundamental rights and directive principles are as follows: