Right to education

Article 21A asks the State to provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of six to fourteen years in such a manner as is determined by the State (Added by 86th amendment, 2002).

Safeguards against arbitrary arrest and detention

Article 22 deals with protection against arrest and detention.

  1. “The relevant part reads: (1) No person, who is arrested, shall be detained in custody, without being informed as soon as may be, on the grounds for such arrest nor shall be denied the right to consult, and to be defended by, a legal practitioner of his choice. (Article 22(1)).
  2. Every person who is arrested and detained in custody, shall be produced before the nearest magistrate, within a period of twenty-four hours of such arrest excluding the time necessary for the journey from the place of arrest to the court of the magistrate and no such person shall be detained in custody beyond the said period without the authority of a magistrate. (Article22 (2)).
  3. Nothing in clause (1) and (2) shall apply- (a) to any person who for the time being is an enemy alien, or (b) to any person who is arrested or detained under any law providing for preventive detention. (Article 22(3)).
  4. No law providing for preventive detention shall authorize the detention of a person for a longer period than three months unless—(a) an Advisory Board, consisting of persons who are, or have been, or are qualified to be appointed as Judges of a High Court, has reported before the expiration of the said period of three months that there is in its opinion sufficient cause for such detention. (Article 22(4a)).
  5. When any person is detained in pursuance of an order made under any law providing for preventive detention, the authority making the order shall, as soon as may be, communicate to such person the grounds on which the order has been made and shall provide him the earliest opportunity of making a representation against the order. (Article 22(5)).
  6. Nothing in clause (5) shall require the authority making any such order as is referred to in that clause to disclose fact which such authority considers to be against the public interest to disclose. (Article 22(6)).
  7. Parliament may by law prescribe

(a) the circumstances under which, and the class or classes of cases in which, a person may be detained for a period longer than three months under any law providing for preventive detention without obtaining the opinion of any Advisory Board in accordance with the provisions of sub-clause (a) of clause (4);

(b) the maximum period for which any person may in any class or classes of cases be detained under any law providing for preventive detention; and

(c) the procedure to be followed by an Advisory Board in an inquiry under sub-clause (a) of clause (4). (Article 22(7, a, b, c)) Under Article 22, an arrested person has the right to be informed of the grounds of his arrest (see Jogindar Kumar v. State of Uttar Pradesh – 1994) and also has the right to have free legal services (Hussainara Khatoon v. Home Secretary, Bihar (1979). Such a person has the right to be produced before a magistrate and also has the right not to be detained beyond 24 hours except by the order of the magistrate. “The Preventive Detention Laws have come up from time to time in respect of the detenues. Some of these are the Preventive Detention Act 1950 which was to cease in its effect in 1951, though its life was extended till 1969. In 1971, the Preventive Detention Law got revived in the form of the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) which continued to be in operation till 1977.

“Though the MISA was repealed in 1978, but appeared within a period of two years. In 1980, the President issued an ordinance known as the National Security Act (1980) which has now become a law (see A.K. Roy v. Union of India – 1982) (providing for preventive detention of persons responsible for communal and caste riots. “The Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Preventive) Act— TADA was passed in 1987 for dealing with the terroristic activities. However, the constitutional safeguards against detention laws including TADA have been provided so to minimize its misuse. In any case, the detenu has the right to make a representation against the detention order (see Lawrence D Souza v. State of Bombay – 1956).

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