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No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure

established by Law. Discuss with references to decided case.

SYNOPSIS:
1. Introduction
2. Personal Liberty Meaning and Scope
3. Conditions Under Article-21
4. The Rights Are Held To Be Covered Under Article 21 Of The Constitution:
5. Conclusion.

INTRODUCTION :
Article 21 deals with Protection of life and Personal Liberty. The inspiration of Article 21
is the 5th Amendment to the Constitution of USA which guarantees the fundamental right to
life and personal liberty. Earlier Article 21 guaranteed the right to life and personal liberty to
citizens only against the arbitrary action of the executive and not from the legislative action.
The state could interfere with the liberty of citizens if it could support its action by a valid
law. Now Article 21 protects the right to life and personal liberty of citizens not only from
the executive action but from the legislative action also. A person can be deprived of his life
and personal liberty if two conditions are complied with,
first, there must be a law and
secondly, there must be a procedure prescribed by that law, provided that the
procedure is just, fair and reasonable.

PERSONAL LIBERTY MEANING AND SCOPE:


Prior to Maneka Gandhi Case Decision: The meaning of the term personal liberty
came up for consideration of the Supreme Court for the first time in A.K. Gopalan v/s
Union of India. In Maneka Gandhi v/s Union of India, the Supreme Court has overruled
Gopalan Case and widened the scope of the word personal liberty. Prior to Maneka
Gandhi Case Article 21 guaranteed the right to life and personal liberty to citizens only
against the arbitrary action of the Executive and not from Legislative action. The state
could interfere with the liberty of citizens.
But now after Maneka Gandhi case Article 21 now protects the right to life and
personal liberty of citizens not only from the Executive action but also from the Legislative
action. The right guaranteed under Article 21 is available to Citizens as well as Non-
Citizens. The object of this article is to give assurance for the safety of life and personal
liberty of such person. Such assurance is subject to limitation, it is not an absolute guarantee.
According to J. Mukarjee of Supreme Court Personal liberty means liberty relating to the
person or body of the individual. Positive rights are well conferred under Article21.
In Maneka Gandhi Case the Supreme Court has not only overruled Gopalan Case but has
widened the scope of the Words Personal Liberty. The expression personal liberty in
Article 21 is of widest amplitude and it covers a variety of rights which go to constitute the
personal liberty of man and some of them have raised to the status of distinct fundamental
rights and given additional protection under Article 19.
CONDITIONS UNDER ARTICLE 21:
Art.21 requires the following conditions to be fulfilled before a person is deprived of
the property:-
1. There must be a valid Law
2. The Law must provide a Procedure.
3. The procedure must be just, fair and reasonable
4. The law must satisfy the requirements of Arts. 14 and 17 i.e., it must be reasonable
THE RIGHTS ARE HELD TO BE COVERED UNDER ARTICLE 21 OF THE
CONSTITUTION:
1. RIGHT TO LIVE WITH HUMAN DIGNITY:
In Maneka Gandhi case the Supreme Court gave the new dimension to Article
21. It held that right to live is not merely confined to physical existence but it also
includes within its ambit the right to live with human dignity. The right to live is not
confined to the faculty or limb through which life is enjoyed or the soul communicates
with the outside world but it also includes the right to live with human dignity, and
all that goes along with it, namely, the bare necessities of life such as adequate
nutrition, clothing and shelter, facilities for reading. Writing and expressing ourselves
in diverse forms, freely moving about and mixing with fellow human being.
People Union for Democratic Rights v/s Union of India: In this Case it was
held that non-payment of minimum wages to the workers employed in various Asiad
Projects in Delhi was a denial to them of their right to live with basic human dignity
and violative Article 21 of the Constitution

2. RIGHT TO LIVELIHOOD (securing the necessity of life):

Under Article-21 Life includes the right to livelihood also Right to life does not
mean merely that life cannot be extinguished for example, by the imposition and execution
of death sentence, except according to procedure established by law. No person can live
without the means of livelihood. If the right to livelihood is not treated as a part of the
Constitutional right to life, the easiest way of depriving a person of his right to life would be
to deprive him of his means of livelihood.
In Olga Tellis v/s Bombay Municipal Corporation: This case is popularly known as
the Pavement Dwellers case. It was held in this case that the word life in Article 21
includes the right to livelihood also.
Sodan Singh v/s New Delhi Municipal Committee: In this case the Supreme Court
held that the right to carry on any trade or business is not included in the concept of life and
personal liberty.

3. RIGHT TO SHELTER:
The right to shelter is a fundamental right under Article21 of the Constitution. In any
organised society, the right to live as a human being is not ensured by meeting only the
animals needs of man. It is secured only when he is assured of all facilities to benefit himself.
Right to life guaranteed in any civilised society implies the right to food, water, decent
environment, education, medical care and shelter. Shelter for human being, is therefore not a
mere protection of his life. It is home where he had opportunities to grow physically,
mentally, intellectually and spiritually. Right to shelter therefore includes adequate living
peace, safe and decent, structure, clean and decent surroundings, sufficient light, pure air and
water, electricity, sanitation and other civic amenties like roads etc. The right to shelter
therefore, does not mean a mere right to roof over ones head but right to all the
infrastructure necessary to enable them to live and develop as a human being.

1. RIGHT TO PRIVACY:
The right to privacy is a fundamental right under Article21. The right to privacy or the
right to let alone is guaranteed under Article 21. A citizen has a right to safeguard the
privacy of his own, his family, marriage, procreation, motherhood, child-bearing and
education among other matters. No one can publish anything concerning the above
matters without his consent whether truthful or otherwise and whether laudatory or
critical. If he does so, he would be violating the right of the person concerned and would
be liable in an action for damages.
This is subject to exceptions that,
1. If any publication of such matters are based on public record including court record
it will be unobjectionable. If a matter becomes a matter of public record the right to
privacy no longer exists and it becomes a legitimate subject for comment by press and
media among others.
2. The right to privacy or the remedy action for damages is simply not available to
public officials as long as the criticism concerns the discharge of their public duties.
In Auto Shankar Case: The Supreme Court held that the right to privacy or
the right to be let alone is guaranteed by Art.21 of the Constitution.
In Mr. X v/s Hospital Z: The Supreme Court held that by disclosing that
the appellant was suffering from AIDS the doctors had not violated the right to privacy
of the appellant guaranteed under Article 21. The Court held that although the right
and restrictions can be imposed on it. The right to marry is an essential element of
right to privacy but is not absolute.
2. RIGHT TO HEALTH AND MEDICAL ASSISTANCE:
In Paramananda Katara v/s Union of India: Right to health and medical
assistance is a fundamental right under Article21. Therefore it is the professional
obligation of all doctors, whether Government or Private to extend medical aid to the
injured immediately to preserve life without waiting for legal formalities to be
complied with by the police. Article 21 casts obligation on the state to preserve life so
that the innocent may be protected and the guilty may be punished. In a historic
judgment in Consular Education and Research Centre v/s Union of India: The
Supreme Court held that right to medical care is a fundamental right.
In Paschim Bang Khet Mazdoor Samiti v/s State of W.B.: The Supreme Court
held that denial of medical care by governments hospitals to an injured person on the
ground of non- availability of beds amounted to violation of right to life under Article
21 of Constitution.
3. RIGHT TO DIE:
The question whether the right to die is included in Article-21 of the Constitution.
State of Maharashtra v/s Maruty Sripati Dubal. The Court listed several
circumstances in which people may wish to end their lives, including disease, cruel or
unbearable condition of life, a sense of shame etc. The right to life under Article 21 also
includes the right not to live, i.e., right to die or terminate ones life
4. PRISONERS RIGHT & ARTICLE 21:
Mahatma Gandhiji said Hate the Sin dont Hate the Sinners. Article 21 is based
on this principle. Article 21 not only gives the protection to the ordinary citizens but also
it gives the protection to the prisoners. The protection under Article 21 is available even
to convicts in jail. The convicts are not by mere reason of their conviction deprived of all
the fundamental rights which they possess. Even a convict is entitled to the precious
rights guaranteed by Article 21 and he shall not be deprived of his life or personal liberty.
5. RIGHT TO FREE LEGAL AID:
The right to free legal aid and speedy trial are guaranteed fundamental right under
Article 21. Article 39-A provides equal justice and free legal aid. It means justice
according to law. In a democratic policy governed by the rule of law, it should be the main
concern of the state to have a free legal system. The crucial words are to provide free legal
aid, by suitable legislation or by schemes. So, that opportunities for securing justice are not
denied to any citizen be reason of economic or other disabilities. In order to enable the State
to afford free legal aid vast number of persons trained in law are needed. Legal aid is
regarded in many forms for obtaining guidance, for resolving disputes in Courts, Tribunals or
other authorities. The need for a continuing and well organised legal education is absolutely
necessary. The legal education should be able to meet the ever-growing demand of the
society.
6. RIGHT TO SPEEDY TRIAL:
In Hussainara Khatoon v/s Home Secretary, State of Bihar: A petition for a writ of
habeas corpus was filed by number of under trial prisoners who were in jail in the State of
Bihar for years awaiting their trial. The Supreme Court held that right to speedy trial a
fundamental right is implicit in the guarantee of life and personal liberty given Article 21
of the Constitution. Speedy trial is the essence of criminal justice. The right to speedy trial
flowing from Article21 is available to accused at all stages namely in the stage of
investigation, inquiry trial, appeal, revision and retrial.
7. RIGHT TO GET POLLUTION FREE WATER AND AIR:
All are entitled to enjoy the right to get pollution free water and air as it is a
fundamental right to life. The Supreme Court said that enjoyment of pollution free
water and air which is included in the right to live under Article 21 of the
constitution.
8. RIGHT TO EDUCATION A FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT UNDER ARTICLE 21-A:
The Constitution 86th Amendment Act, 2002 has added a new Article 21- A after
Article 21 and has made education for all children of the age of 6 to 14 a fundamental right.
It provides that the State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the
age of 6 to 14 years in such manner as the state may, by law determine. It is well known
that education is a basic human right for the success of democratic system of government;
education is one of the elements. The framers of the Constitution realising the importance of
education have imposed a duty on the state under Article 45 as one of the directive principle
of state policy to provide free and compulsory education to all children.
The object was abolish illiteracy from the country. But it is unfortunate that even after
the lapse of somany years from the commencement of the constitution they did not take any
concrete steps to implement this 40% of the population of the country is still illiterate. The
right to life under Article 21 and the dignity of the individual cannot be realised unless it is
accompanied by the right of education.
In Mohini Jain v/s State of Karnataka: The matter was raised by the petitioner that
the right to education is a fundamental right under Article 21. The Court held that right to
education in all level is a fundamental right under Article 21-A and charging the high fee for
admission is illegal and amount to denial of citizen right to education. The education in India
has never been a commodity.
In Unni Krishna v/s State of A.P. : Where the Court specifically held that the right to
education for the children of age of 6 to 14 is a fundamental right. Article 21-A makes it
obligatory for the Government to enact a Central Legislation to give effects to the
Constitutional amendments. The Legislation will create a mechanism by which a citizen
who is aggrieved that the right to education has not been fulfilled should be able to get relief
by filing writ petitions in the High Courts and the Supreme Court.
Ultimately Right of Children to Compulsory Education Act, 2009 was passed by the
parliament to give effect to the 86th Amendment Act, 2002. It provides the responsibility of
the Central and State Government, teachers, parents and community members in ensuring
that all children of the age of 6 to 14 years receive free and compulsory education.

CONCLUSION:
Under Article 21 of the Constitution No person shall be deprived of his life or
personal liberty. This fundamental right is the personal right which are given to both
citizens and non-citizens therefore no State can interfere with the liberty of the citizens.