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Right To Constitutional Remedies (Article 32)

Declaration of fundamental rights is not enough unless the effective machinery for the enforcement of these rights were provided. Keeping this thing in mind the framers of the Indian constitution has inserted the Article 32 (right to constitutional remedies) which gives every individual right to move to the Supreme Court to enforce his or her fundamental rights guaranteed in Part III of the Constitution. Article 32 itself is a fundamental right and must be protected by State.

The importance of this Article can be understood by the following words of Dr. Ambedkar

“If I was asked to name any particular Article in this Constitution the most important- an Article without which the Constitution would be nullity- I could not refer any other Article except this one (Article 32)………..It is the very soul of the Constitution and very heart of it,”  

Article 32(1) guarantees the right to move to the Supreme Court by ‘appropriate proceeding’ for the enforcement of the fundamental rights conferred in Part III of the Constitution. Article 32(2) confers powers to the Supreme Court to issue appropriate directions or order or writ including the writs in the nature of habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, quo-warranto and certiorari for the enforcement of any right conferred in Pat III.

It must be noted that the Supreme Court has the power to issue any direction, order or writs including the writs in the nature of the five writs including habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, quo-warranto and certiorari. The Supreme Court can issue any other writs which may be deemed appropriate besides these above-mentioned five. A similar power was also conferred to the High Courts under Article 226. But the power regarding the issuance of writs, the High Courts enjoy wider power than the Supreme Court as the High Courts have the power to issue writs not only for the enforcement of fundamental rights but for any other purpose also whereas the Supreme Court’s power is limited in fundamental rights only.

Under clause (3) of Article 32, the Parliament is authorized to empower any other court to exercise within the local limits of its jurisdiction all or any of the power exercisable by the Supreme Court under clause (2). Further clause (4) says that rights guaranteed in this Article shall not be suspended excepts as otherwise provided for the Constitution.

There is no limitation to the Supreme Court in regards to the kind of proceeding envisaged in Article 32 except the proceeding must be ‘appropriate’ and the purpose of such proceeding must be to enforce the fundamental rights.

Thus Article 32 provides an expeditious and inexpensive remedy that is right to constitutional remedies, for the protection of fundamental rights from legislative and executive interference, And the Supreme Court here enjoys the widest power for this purpose.

It is clear from Article 32(1) that wherever there is a violation of fundamental rights, any person can move to the Supreme Court for an appropriate remedy. Thus the Supreme Court has been conferred as the supreme protector of fundamental rights under this Article.

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