Cases of Article 21 Indian Constitution with Short explanation

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Cases of Article 21 Indian Constitution with Short explanation

 Cases of Article 21 Indian Constitution

Article 21 reads as:
“No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to a procedure established by law.”
According to Bhagwati, J., Article 21 “embodies a constitutional value of supreme importance in a democratic society.” Iyer, J., has characterized Article 21 as “the procedural magna carta protective of life and liberty.
This right has been held to be the heart of the Constitution, the most organic and progressive provision in our living constitution, the foundation of our laws.
Article 21 can only be claimed when a person is deprived of his “life” or “personal liberty” by the “State” as defined in Article 12. Violation of the right by private individuals is not within the preview of Article 21
  1. What do we include in ‘life and personal liberty’.
  2. What is ‘procedure establish by law’.

Due process of law

  • American constitution  follows this principle.
  • Checks whether any law in question is fair and not arbitrary.
  • Principle provided very wider power to the Judiciary to while protecting the interest of its citizens.

Procedure Established by Law

‘Procedure established by law’ means that a law that is duly enacted by the legislature or the body in question is valid if the procedure to establish it has been correctly followed.

Also Read: Important Amendments to Indian Constitution to (105th) 
Article 21 of Constitution & various dimensions added by SC:

1. AK Gopalan V State of Madras:

Procedure established by law

A rigid and inflexible following of the procedure established by law may raise the risk of compromise to life and personal liberty of individuals due to unjust law made by the law-making authorities.

2. Maneka Gandhi V UOI

Right to have fair procedure-

The 7 Judges bench was held that Article 19 and Article 21 must be read together and the procedure established by the law restricting there rights should stand the scrutiny of the other provisions of the Constitution as well- including Article 14. This case also held that Article 14, 19 and 21 is the ‘golden triangle’ of the Indian Constitution.

Facets of ‘Life and Liberty’

3. Hussainara v Home Sec , Bihar Right to legal Aid-

Supreme Court held that “under-trial prisoners, in jail for period longer than what they would have been sentenced if convicted, was illegal as being in violation of Article of 21.”

 4. Right to Public Trial- Vineet Narain V UOI

5. Right to go abroad- Satwant Singh Sawhney v. Assistant Passport Officer, New Delhi,

6. Right to privacy-

Kharak Singh v. State of U.P

“The meanings of the expression’s “life” and “personal liberty” in Article 21 were considered by this court in Kharak Singh’s case. Although the majority found that the Constitution contained no explicit guarantee of a “right to privacy”, it read the right to personal liberty expansively to include a right to dignity. It held that “an unauthorized intrusion into a person’s home and the disturbance caused to him thereby, is as it were the violation of a common law right of a man -an ultimate essential of ordered liberty, if not of the very concept of civilization.”

7. Right against solitary confinement

Sunil Batra v. Delhi  Administration

SC held that the “right to life” included the right to lead a healthy life so as to enjoy all faculties of the human body in their prime conditions. It would even include the right to protection of a person’s tradition, culture, heritage and all that gives meaning to a man’s life. It includes the right to live in peace, to sleep in peace and the right to repose and health.

8. Right against hand cuffing Prem Shankar v. Delhi Administration

9. Right to Medical Care- Parmananda Katara v. Union of India
10. Right to Health- Consumer Education and Research Centre v. Union of India
11. Right to Social Security and Protection of Family- L.I.C. of India v. Consumer Education and Research Centre
12. Right to Shelter- Chameli Singh v. State of U.P

13. D.T.C. v. D.T.C. Mazdoor Congress

Right To Livelihood-

Apex Court held that “A regulation conferring power on the authority to terminate the services of a permanent and confirm employee by issuing a noticing without assigning him any reasons and without giving him a hearing has been held to be a wholly arbitrary and violative of Art. 21.”

14. D.F. Marion v. Minnie Davis

Right to Reputation-

“good reputation was an element of personal security and was protective by the Constitution, equally with the right to the enjoyment of life, liberty and property. The court affirmed that the right to enjoyment of life, liberty and property. The court affirmed that the right to enjoyment of private reputation was of ancient origin and was necessary to human society.”

15. Vishakha v. State of Rajasthan

Right Against Sexual Harassment at Workplace-

Supreme Court has declared sexual harassment of a working woman at her work as amounting to violation of rights of gender equality and rights to life and liberty which is clear violation of Articles 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution.

16. Right To Live with Human Dignity- Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India,Francis Coralie v. Union Territory of Delhi
17. Right against Bar Fetters-Sunil Batra v. Delhi Administration-

18. Right to Write a Book-State of Maharashtra v. Prabhakar Pandurang

19. Right against Delayed Execution: Sher Singh v. State of Punjab

20. Right against Public Hanging : Attorney General of India v. Lachma Devi

21. Death by Hanging not Violative of Article 21- Deena v. Union of India
22. Right to Bail.- Babu Singh v. State of Uttar Pradesh
23. Right to Fair Trial- Zahira Habibullah Sheikh v. State of Gujarat
24. Right to Speedy Trial- Hussainara Khatoon v. Home Secretary, State of Bihar.

25. M.H. Hoskot v. State of Maharashtra

Right to Free Legal Aid & Right to Appeal-

Supreme Court said while holding free legal aid as an integral part of fair procedure the Court explained that “ the two important ingredients of the right of appeal are; firstly, service of a copy of a judgement to the prisoner in time to enable him to file an appeal and secondly, provision of free legal service to the prisoner who is indigent or otherwise disabled from securing legal assistance. This right to free legal aid is the duty of the government and is an implicit aspect of Article 21 in ensuring fairness and reasonableness; this cannot be termed as government charity.

26. Right against Illegal Detention- Joginder Kumar v. State of Uttar Pradesh
27. Disclosure of Dreadful Diseases- Mr. X v. Hospital Z
28. Tapping of Telephone- PUCL v. Union of India
29. Right Against Noise Pollution- In Re: Noise Pollution
30. Murli S. Deora v. Union of India- smoking in public place
31. Right to get Pollution Free Water and Air- Subhas Kumar v. State of Bihar.

33. Euthanasia and Right to Life-Gian Kaur v. State of Punjab

“……’Right to life’ is a natural right embodied in Article 21 but suicide is an unnatural termination or extinction of life and, therefore, incompatible and inconsistent with the concept of right to life”

34. Right to Work- Olga tells v BMC

“Pavement Dwellers Case” a five judge bench of the Court now implied that ‘right to livelihood’ is borne out of the ‘right to life’, as no person can live without the means of living, that is, the means of Livelihood. That the court in this case observed that:
“The sweep of right to life conferred by Art.21 is wide and far reaching. It does not mean, merely that life cannot be extinguished or taken away as, for example, by the imposition and execution of death sentence, except according to procedure established by law. That is but one aspect if the right to life. An equally important facet of the right to life is the right to livelihood because no person can live without the means of livelihood.”

35. Right to Marriage- Mr. X V Hospital Z
36. Right to Food- PUCL v UOI
37. Right to Legal Aid- Sheela Barse v UOI
38. Right to Education- Mohini jain v state of karnatka

39. Right to have clean Environment- MC Mehta v UOI
40. Right to have shelter-chameli v state
41. Right to receive compensation – Rudal Shah v state of Bihar

Cases of Article 21 Indian Constitution for CLAT PG | Judicial Services


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