Directives also play the following roles:
1. They facilitate stability and continuity in domestic and foreign policies in political, economic and social spheres in spite of the changes of the party in power.
2. They are supplementary to the fundamental rights of the citizens.
• They are intended to fill in the vacuum in Part III by providing for social and economic rights.
3. Creates a favourable atmosphere for the full and proper enjoyment of the fundamental rights by the citizens-> Political democracy, without economic democracy, has no meaning.
4. They enable the opposition to exercise influence and control over the operations of the government-> Opposition can blame the ruling party on the ground that its activities are opposed to the Directives.
5. Test for the performance of the government-> People can examine the policies and programmes of the government
6. They serve as common political manifesto.
CONFLICT BETWEEN FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS
AND DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES
Champakam Dorairajan case (1951)-> the Supreme Court ruled that in case of any conflict between the Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles, the former would prevail.
Declared DPSP have to conform to and run as subsidiary to the Fundamental Rights.
Underwent a major change in Golaknath case 1967 – the Supreme Court ruled that the Parliament cannot take away or abridge any of the Fundamental Rights, which are ‘sacrosanct’ in nature.
Fundamental Rights cannot be amended for the implementation of the Directive Principles.
42nd -> Amendment Act accorded position of legal primacy and supremacy to the Directive Principles over the Fundamental Rights conferred by Articles 14, 19 and 31.
Fundamental Rights conferred by Article 14 and Article 19 were accepted as subordinate to the Directive Principles specified in Article 39 (b) & (c).
Minerva Mills case (1980)–> Supreme Court also held that ‘the Indian Constitution is founded on the bedrock of the balance between Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles.
Present – Fundamental Rights enjoy supremacy over the Directive Principles.
Yet, this does not mean that the Directive Principles cannot be implemented.
Minerva Mills case (1980) – Directive Principles were once again made subordinate to the Fundamental Rights.
Parliament can amend FRs for implementing DPSPs, so long as the amendment does not damage or destroy the basic structure of the Constitution
IMPLEMENTATION OF DIRECTIVE PRINCIPLES
Since 1950, the successive governments at the Centre and in the states have made several laws and formulated various programmes for implementing the Directive Principles.
These are mentioned below:
1. Planning Commission was established in 1950 to take up the development of the country in a planned manner.
• The successive Five Year Plans aimed at securing socio-economic justice and reducing inequalities of income, status and opportunities.
2. Almost all the states have passed land reform laws to bring changes in the agrarian society and to improve the conditions of the rural masses.
• These measures include :
(a) Abolition of intermediaries like zamindars, jagirdars, inamdars, etc;
(b) Tenancy reforms like security of tenure, fair rents, etc;
(c) Imposition of ceilings on land holdings;
(d) Distribution of surplus land among the landless labourers; and
(e) Cooperative farming.
3. Have been enacted to protect the interests of the labour sections :
• Minimum Wages Act (1948),
• Payment of Wages Act (1936),
• Payment of Bonus Act (1965),
• Contract Labour Regulation and Abolition Act (1970),
• Child Labour Prohibition and Regulation Act (1986),
• Bonded Labour System Abolition Act (1976),
• Trade Unions Act (1926),
• Factories Act (1948),
• Mines Act (1952),
• Industrial Disputes Act (1947),
• Workmen’s Compensation Act (1923) and so on
• In 2006, the government banned the child labour.
4. Maternity Benefit Act (1961) and the Equal Remuneration Act (1976) have been made to protect the interests of women workers.
5. Legal Services Authorities Act (1987) has established a nation-wide network to provide free and competent legal aid to the poor and to organise lok adalats for promoting equal justice.
• Lok adalat is a statutory forum for conciliatory settlement of legal disputes.
• Its awards are enforceable, binding on the parties and final as no appeal lies before any court against them.
6. Set up for the development of cottage industries in rural areas :
• Khadi and Village Industries Board,
• Khadi and Village Industries Commission,
• Small-Scale Industries Board,
• National Small Industries Corporation,
• Handloom Board,
• Handicrafts Board,
• Coir Board, Silk Board and so on
7. Launched for raising the standard of living of people.
• The Community Development Programme (1952),
• Hill Area Development Programme (1960),
• Drought-Prone Area Programme (1973),
• Minimum Needs Programme (1974),
• Integrated Rural Development Programme (1978),
• Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (1989),
• Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (1999),
• Sampoorna Grameena Rozgar Yojana (2001),
• National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme (2006) and so on.
8. Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, have been enacted to safeguard the wildlife and the forests respectively.
9. Three-tier panchayati raj system (at village, taluka and zila levels) has been introduced to translate into reality Gandhiji’s dream of every village being a republic.
10. Laws to prohibit the slaughter of cows, calves, and bullocks have been enacted in some states.
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