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Right to Constitutional Remedies

If rights are like guarantees, they are of no use if there is no one to honour them. The fundamental rights in the Constitution are important because they are enforceable. We have a right to seek the enforcement of the rights given by the constitution. This is called the Right to Constitutional Remedies. This itself is a Fundamental Right.

This right makes other rights effective. It is possible that sometimes our rights may be violated by fellow citizens, private bodies or by the government. When any of our rights are violated we can seek remedy through courts. If it is a Fundamental Right we can directly approach the Supreme Court or the High Court of a state. That is why Dr. Ambedkar called the Right to Constitutional Remedies, ‘the heart and soul’ of our Constitution.


Fundamental Rights are guaranteed against the actions of the Legislatures, the Executive, and any other authorities instituted by the government. There can be no law or action that violates the Fundamental Rights. If any act of the Legislature or the Executive takes away or limits any of the Fundamental Rights it will be invalid. We can challenge such laws of the central and state governments, the policies and actions of the government or the governmental organisations like the nationalised banks or electricity boards. Courts also enforce the Fundamental Rights against private individuals and bodies. The Supreme Court and High Courts have the power to issue directions, orders or writs for the enforcement of the Fundamental Rights. They can also award compensation to the victims and punishment to the violators. The judiciary in our country is independent of the government and the parliament. We also noted that our judiciary is very powerful and can do whatever is needed to protect the rights of the citizens.

In case of any violation of a Fundamental Right the aggrieved person can go to a court for remedy. But now, any person can go to the court against the violation of the Fundamental Right, if it is of social or public interest. It is called Public Interest Litigation (PIL). Under the PIL any citizen or group of citizens can approach the Supreme Court or a High Court for the protection of public interest against a particular law or action of the government. One can write to the judges even on a postcard. The court will take up the matter if the judges find it in public interest.


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