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PSIR 1B-3.2 Fundamental Rights and Duties – Previous Year Questions – Solved

Model Answers to PYQs (2018-2023)

1] The main goal of the fundamental duties in the Indian Constitution is to generate civic responsibility among the citizen. Explain. [2023/15m/200w/7b]

The fundamental duties were added to the Constitution through the 42nd Amendment Act in 1976 and are outlined in Article 51A. They are intended to promote a sense of responsibility and commitment to the country, its ideals, and its institutions among the citizens of India.

The fundamental duties serve to remind Indian citizens of their responsibilities as members of a democratic society. By outlining these duties in the Constitution, the government seeks to generate awareness of the roles and responsibilities that accompany the rights and privileges of citizenship.

Fundamental duties are meant to be seen as complementary to fundamental rights. They reinforce the idea that rights and responsibilities go hand in hand. While citizens have the right to certain freedoms and protections, they also have a duty to respect these rights in others and in society as a whole.

The fundamental duties promote the idea of national integration and unity. They encourage citizens to put the collective interests of the nation above personal or sectional interests. By fostering a sense of duty toward the country, they aim to create a cohesive and inclusive society.

The fundamental duties to protect public property and preserve cultural heritage encourage a sense of ownership and responsibility.

The duty to develop the scientific temper encourages citizens to think critically and engage with social and scientific progress.

In conclusion, the inclusion of fundamental duties in the Indian Constitution is a deliberate effort to promote civic responsibility and a sense of duty among the citizens of India. These duties remind individuals of their obligations to the nation, its values, and its collective well-being, ensuring that rights and responsibilities are balanced in the functioning of a democratic and pluralistic society. [282 words]

2] Constitutionally reconciling the Fundamental Rights with the Directive Principles of State Policy has led to frequent amendments of the Constitution and judicial interventions.” Comment. [2021/20m/250w/6a]

The Constitution of India provides a framework that balances individual rights with the state’s responsibility to promote social and economic welfare. This has led to a plethora of evolutionary processes in the constitution of India.

Over time, conflicts have arisen between Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles due to their divergent nature. In some cases, laws or government actions that promote Directive Principles may infringe upon Fundamental Rights. For example, a law providing reservations or affirmative action to promote social equality may be challenged as discriminatory against certain individuals.

To address these conflicts, the Constitution has been amended several times to reconcile the balance between Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles. Amendments have been made to introduce new Fundamental Rights (such as the Right to Education) and to impose reasonable restrictions on Fundamental Rights to accommodate social welfare objectives.

The judiciary plays a crucial role in interpreting and reconciling conflicts between Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles. The Supreme Court of India, through its power of judicial review, has intervened to strike a balance between the two. It has held that Directive Principles are fundamental to the interpretation of Fundamental Rights and that they should be read harmoniously to achieve the larger constitutional goals.

Judicial interpretations have evolved over time, emphasizing that Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles are not mutually exclusive but complementary to each other. The courts have attempted to minimize conflicts by interpreting laws and policies in a manner that upholds both individual rights and the principles of social and economic justice.

It is worth noting that the reconciliation between Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles is an ongoing process. The dynamic nature of society and the evolving needs of the nation necessitate continuous assessment and interpretation. Frequent amendments to the Constitution and judicial interventions are reflective of this ongoing endeavour to strike a delicate balance between individual liberties and the promotion of social welfare in a democratic and egalitarian society. [319 words]

3] Discuss the right to constitutional remedies in India. [2020/10m/150w/5c]

The right to constitutional remedies empowers individuals to approach the Supreme Court (under Article 32) or High Courts (under Article 226) for the enforcement of their fundamental rights. It enables citizens to seek judicial review of laws, executive actions, or decisions that violate their constitutional rights.

The Supreme Court and High Courts have the power to issue writs, including habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, certiorari, and quo warranto, as part of their remedial jurisdiction. These writs serve as powerful tools for safeguarding individual liberties, rectifying illegal actions, and ensuring accountability.

This mechanism acts as a check on the exercise of state power. It allows citizens to challenge any unconstitutional actions or policies of the government or its agencies. This ensures that the government remains accountable to the Constitution and respects the fundamental rights of individuals.

Further, the right to constitutional remedies can also be invoked against private entities that violate fundamental rights. Moreover, the right to constitutional remedies has been instrumental in the development of Public Interest Litigation in India.

Yet, the right to constitutional remedies is not without limitations and challenges. The burden of proof lies on the petitioner, and the process can be time-consuming and expensive. There can also be `instances of judicial delays and backlogs that hinder the effective realization of this right.

Overall, by providing a mechanism for judicial review and redressal, this right strengthens the protection of fundamental rights and reinforces the democratic principles of the Indian legal system. [243 words]

The post contains answers to the last 6-year papers i.e. (2023-2018). Answers to the previous year questions from 2013-2017 are a part of our book PSIR Optional Model Answers to PYQs (2013-2022)

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