Fundamental rights needs NCERT | Polity | Indian constitution detailed series - 2

Articles 14-35 of Indian Constitution deal with Fundamental Rights. These rights are conferred upon the citizens of India for the Constitution tells that these rights can not be violated in any condition. You can click here to understand the basics of Indian constitution.

  1. Right to Equality (Article 14-18)
  2. Right to Freedom (Article 19-22)
  3. Right against Exploitation (Article 23-24)
  4. Right to Freedom of Religion (Article 25-28)
  5. Cultural and Educational Rights (Article 29-30)
  6. Right to Constitutional Remedies (Article 32-35)

Need of fundamental right Example 1 - Asian Games

In 1982 during the construction work for Asian Games the government engaged a few contractors. These contractors employed a large number of very poor construction workers from different parts of the country to build the flyovers and stadiums. These workers were kept in poor working conditions and were paid less than the minimum wages decided by the government.

A team of social scientists studied their poor condition and petitioned the Supreme Court. They argued that employing a person to work for less than the minimum prescribed wage amounts to begar or forced labour, which is a violation of the Fundamental Right against exploitation. The court accepted this plea and directed the government to ensure that thousands of workers get the prescribed wages for their work.

Need of fundamental right Example 2 - Machal Lalung 

Machal Lalung was 23 when he was arrested. A resident of Chuburi village of Morigaon district of Assam, Machal was charged of causing grievous injuries. He was found mentally too unstable to stand trial and was sent as under trial to Lok Priya Gopinath Bordoloi Mental Hospital in Tejpur for treatment.

Both these examples show the importance of having rights and of the actual implementation of these rights. A democracy must ensure that individuals have certain rights and that the government will always recognise these rights. Therefore it is often a practice in most democratic countries to list the rights of the citizens in the constitution itself.

Indian constitution in Indian polity series articles

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How to download IB ACIO Admit Card ?

IB ACIO Admit Card 2020-21 has been released by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on February 15. Exam timings will be shared with the candidates 2 days before the exam.

To download the IB ACIO admit card, candidates need to login with the user ID and password. Read below for more details on IB ACIO admit card.

Follow these steps to download IB ACIO admit card:

  1. Visit the IB official website

  2. Click the admit card link on the home page

  3. Enter registration number and password

  4. The admit card appears on the screen

  5. Download the admit card and take its printout

Click here to download IB ACIO admit card 2020 - 2021

Also you can copy below link and open in browser to download IB ACIO admit card

IB ACIO admit card
Download IB ACIO admit card

IB ACIO Admit Card 2020-21

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Why we need a constitution (in detail)

What is a constitution ? What are its functions ? What role does it perform for a society ? How does a constitution relate to our daily existence ? Just go through these basics. Answering these questions is not as difficult as you might think.

Constitution allows coordination and assurance

Imagine yourself to be a member of a reasonably large group. Further imagine that this group has the following characteristics. The members of this group are diverse in various ways. They have different religious allegiances: some are Hindus, some are Muslims, some Christians and some perhaps profess no religion at all. They are also varied in many different respects: they pursue different professions, have different abilities, have different hobbies, different tastes in everything from films to books. Some are rich and some are poor. Some are old, some young. 
Imagine further that members of this group are likely to have disputes over various aspects of life: How much property should one be allowed to own? Should it be compulsory that every child be sent to school or should the parents be allowed to decide? How much should this group spend on its safety and security? Or should it build more parks instead? Should the group be allowed to discriminate against some of its members? Every question will elicit a variety of answers from different people. 
But, for all their diversity, this group has to live together. They are dependent upon each other in various ways. They require the cooperation of each other. What will enable the group to live together peacefully?

One may say that perhaps members of this group can live together if they can agree on some basic rules. Why will the group need certain basic rules? Think of what would happen in the absence of some basic rules. Every individual would be insecure simply because they would not know what members of this group could do to each other, who could claim rights over what. Any group will need some basic rules that are publicly promulgated and known to all members of that group to achieve a minimal degree of coordination. 
But these rules must not only be known, they must also be enforceable. If citizens have no assurance that others will follow these rules, they will themselves have no reason to follow these rules. Saying that the rules are legally enforceable gives an assurance to everybody that others will follow these, for if they do not do so, they will be punished. 
So The first function of a constitution is to provide a set of basic rules that allow for minimal coordination amongst members of a society.

Specification of decision making powers 

A constitution is a body of fundamental principles according to which a state is constituted or governed. But what should these fundamental rules be? And what makes them fundamental? Well, the first question you will have to decide is who gets to decide what the laws governing the society should be? You may want rule X, but others may want rule Y. How do we decide whose rules or preferences should govern us? You may think the rules you want everyone to live by are the best; but others think that their rules are the best. How do we resolve this dispute? So even before you decide what rules should govern this group you have to decide: Who gets to decide? The constitution has to provide an answer to this question. It specifies the basic allocation of power in a society. It decides who gets to decide what the laws will be. 
In principle, this question, who gets to decide, can be answered in many ways: in a monarchical constitution, a monarch decides; in some constitutions like the old Soviet Union, one single party was given the power to decide. But in democratic constitutions, broadly speaking, the people get to decide. But this matter is not so simple. Because even if you answer that the people should decide, it will not answer the question: how should the people decide? For something to be law, should everyone agree to it? Should the people directly vote on each matter as the ancient Greeks did? Or should the people express their preferences by electing representatives? But if the people act through their representatives, how should these representatives be elected? How many should there be?
So The second function of a constitution is to specify who has the power to make decisions in a society. It decides how the government will be constituted.

Limitations on the powers of government 

Constitutions limit the power of government in many ways. The most common way of limiting the power of government is to specify certain fundamental rights that all of us possess as citizens and which no government can ever be allowed to violate. The exact content and interpretation of these rights varies from constitution to constitution. But most constitutions will protect a basic cluster of rights. Citizens will be protected from being arrested arbitrarily and for no reason. This is one basic limitation upon the power of government. Citizens will normally have the right to some basic liberties: to freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, freedom of association, freedom to conduct a trade or business etc. In practice, these rights can be limited during times of national emergency and the constitution specifies the circumstances under which these rights may be withdrawn.
So the third function of a constitution is to set some limits on what a government can impose on its citizens. These limits are fundamental in the sense that government may never trespass them.

Aspirations and goals of a society

Most of the older constitutions limited themselves largely to allocating decision-making power and setting some limits to government power. But many twentieth century constitutions, of which the Indian Constitution is the finest example, also provide an enabling framework for the government to do certain positive things, to express the aspirations and goals of society. The Indian Constitution was particularly innovative in this respect. Societies with deep entrenched inequalities of various kinds, will not only have to set limits on the power of government, they will also have to enable and empower the government to take positive measures to overcome forms of inequality or deprivation.
So The fourth function of a constitution is to enable the government to fulfil the aspirations of a society and create conditions for a just society.

Food for thought
  1. The constitution makers have to address themselves to very different aspirations. Here is Nehru trying to balance between different visions and ideologies. Can you identify what these different groups stand for? Who do you think prevailed in this balancing act?
  2. The writing of the new Iraqi constitution after the collapse of Saddam Hussein's regime saw a lot of conflict between different ethnic groups in the country. What do these different people stand for? Compare the conflict depicted here with that depicted in earlier cartoons for the European Union and India.
  3. Countries of the European Union tried to create a European constitution. The attempt failed. Here is a cartoonist’s impression of this attempt. Does this always happen in any constitution making?

Why we need a constitution and Functions of constitution

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What is Minimum Support Price (MSP) | CACP

What is Minimum Support Price (MSP) 

What is MSP

The minimum price at which which Government will buy crop from farmer. This is meant to serve as “floor” price, below which Government will not allow prices to fall, EVEN If there was bumper crop.

On the basis of the recommendations of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP), Government of India declares minimum support prices before each sowing season for certain crops. Government agencies purchase the entire quantity offered by the farmers at the announced minimum price. Thus, farmer always has the option to sell produce to government, if he can’t get remunerative prices from private merchants.

How MSP save farmers

  1. Prevents Forces sale
    • National Bank for Agriculture & Rural Development’s (NABARD)‘s’ All India Rural Financial Inclusion Survey 2016-17 found that the average monthly income of an agriculture household is less Rs.9,000/- from all sources combined (cultivation, wage labour, animal husbandry.)
    • Thus, farmer rarely has surplus savings for buying inputs for the next cropping season. Access to credit (loans) is also difficult for small and marginal farmers.
    • So, if they are forced into distress-sale of produce at throw-away prices, they’ll not be able to buy high quality seeds, fertilizers, pesticides & tractor-rent for next cropping season, which will further decrease their income from the next cycle. MSP prevents this phenomenon.
  2. Informed Decision
    • Government announces MSP before the sowing season for 23 crops including cereals, pulses, oilseeds & certain cash crops.
    • This advance information helps the farmer to make an informed decision about which crop to sow for maximum economic benefit within the limitations of his farm size, climate and irrigation facilities.
  3. Limitation for private buyers
    • MSP sends a price-signal to market that if merchants don’t offer higher than MSP prices the farmer may not sell them his produce.
    • Thus it acts as an anchor or benchmark for agro-commodity market. While it doesn’t guarantee that market prices will also be higher than MSP, but atleast it ensures the market prices will not drastically lower than MSP. [e.g. IF Mandi-cartel-mafias offers wheat purchase price at 90% lower than MSP, then their political masters from ruling party will put pressure on them lest the media and opposition parties make an issue of it!]

How MSP decieded

  • Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) since ’85.
  • Under Agriculture ministry (and NOT consumer affairs ministry). CACP Has two non-official members from farming community.
  • CACP recommends minimum support prices (MSP) based on certain economic criteria.
  • Subsequently, the center announces MSPs for 24 major agricultural commodities, including sugarcane, before each season.
  • MSP announced for both RABI and Kharif SEASONS.

Season wise crops (Kharif, Rabi and Zaid)

SeasonNorth IndiaSouth India
Kharif: June to SeptRice, Cotton, Bajra, Maize, Jowar, TurRice, Maize, Ragi, Jowar, Groundnut
Rabi: Oct to MarchWheat, Gram, Rapeseeds and Mustard, BarleyRice, Maize, Ragi, Groundnut, Jowar
Zaid: April-JuneVegetables, Fruits, FodderRice, Vegetables, Fodder

What is Minimum Support Price (MSP) 

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    What is White Revolution | Milk

    The huge increase in milk supply through concerted efforts on a cooperative level is known as the White Revolution. Forty-eight years after Operation Flood – that made India the world’s largest milk producer – India continues to be on the lookout for the next breakthrough in agricultural produce and productivity.

    White Revolution 2.0 has effectuated dairy firms’ marketing strategy for milk and milk products, resuscitating the outlook of product-market mix. India emerged as the largest milk producer and consumer in 2019. Currently India has 17% of world output of dairy products, surpassing USA in 1998 as world’s largest producer of dairy. All this was achieved by operation Flood which was launched in 1970’s.

    Initiatives for the diary production and prevention:

    1. National Programme for Bovine Breeding
    2. Rashtriya Gokul Mission
    3. National Kamdhenu Bredding Centres
    4. E-Pashuhaat portal
    5. National Programme for Dairy Development (NPDD)
    The Government initiatives can ensure sustainable growth of the dairy sector as well as boost incomes of millions of small and marginal dairy farmers. Linking the animal husbandry with food processing industry, agriculture, researches & patents has all the possible potential to make India a nutritional power house of the world. Animal husbandry is the imperative hope, definite desire and urgent panacea for India as well as the world.

    What is White Revolution | Milk

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    What is Blue Revolution | fisheries

    What is Blue Revolution | fisheries

    Creating a separate department for fisheries in the Union government is a significant step. Fisheries are the primary source of livelihood for several communities. A concentrated effort by an independent department could help the government achieve its objective of doubling farmer’s income.

    The fisheries and aquaculture production contribute around 1% to India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and over 5% to the agricultural GDP. 

    India is the world’s second-largest fish producer with exports worth more than Rs 47,000 crores. Fisheries are the country’s single-largest agriculture export, with a growth rate of 6 to 10 percent in the past five years. India’s long coastline has the potential of becoming the strength of the economy, particularly through exploitation of the Blue Economy, to ensure better standards and quality of life for a large number of people living in the coastal areas.

    The new National Policy on Marine Fisheries, therefore, talks of introducing deep-sea fishing vessels and assisting fishing communities to convert their vessels and gears for the waters beyond. An integrated approach towards agro and food processing, preservation, packaging and maintenance of the cold chain will be our focus of attention.

    The Blue Revolution scheme launched a few years ago seeks to make fishery and aquaculture a viable and rewarding vocation. The Blue Revolution mission aims at doubling the income of farmers. Fish Consumption must not lead to Exploitation which affects Sustainability. However, like in rest of the world, India’s fisheries sector faces the challenge of sustainability. The Food and Agriculture Organisation’s State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture reports note that nearly 90 per cent of the global marine fish stocks have either been fully-exploited, or over-fished or depleted to an extent that recovery may not be biologically possible.

    What is Blue Revolution | fisheries

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    1.  Pulses occupy an important place in Indian agriculture. India moved from a situation of acute scarcity of pulses in 2015-16, to providing free pulses to most of the citizens in the country.
    2. The 2015-16 pulses crisis was not a wasted opportunity; it set forth an ambitious and desirable outcome to make the country self-sufficient in pulses production.
    3. The twin factors critical to an immediate increase in pulses production was the minimum support price (MSP) and procurement from farmers directly at MSP.
    4. Additional coverage was provided for pulses under the National Food Security Mission (NFSM) launched in 2016-17.
    5. As in the wheat and rice revolutions, the rewards of the increased pulse production are also being reaped by a few farmers, concentrated mostly in irrigated areas. Attracted by the high prices that such pulses as pigeon pea and chick pea fetch in the market, these farmers are now growing them on a regular basis.
    6. Despite the increasing yields of some pulses, the demand for pulses has consistently exceeded production. Though India is the world's largest producer of pulses, it is also the largest importer.
    7. According to ICRISAT there has been no concerted research effort on a particular pulse. The All India Coordinated Pulses Improvement Project has had to concentrate on 10 different crops simultaneously, so the relative research attention on each crop has been less than on rice or wheat.
    8. India need to produce 40-50 lakh tonnes of additional pulses for meeting the domestic requirement and this can be possible only if we develop high yielding short duration, drought and insect-pest resistance varieties of pulses.
    9. The important role that pulses can play in sustainable crop production systems, in particular through their contribution to improved soil fertility and to agro-biodiversity along with providing a balanced and healthy diet as evidenced by their use by the World Food Programme and other food aid initiatives makes it a naturally optimal choice.

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