Human rights are those rights which a person should have in order to be a human being. These are the rights which every person should enjoy to lead an honourable life as a human being. All individuals should enjoy these rights without any distinction of race, religion, caste, colour or sex. These laws have been given a proper place in the constitutions of almost all the democratic”countries of the world. In the present day world, there is a lot of concern about the protection of human rights.
The United Nations on Decembers 10, 1948 adopted the Universal declaration of Human Rights and called upon the different member nations to assure all the human rights to their people. December 10 thus became a historic day in the annals of the world history. As such this day, i.e. December 10 is therefore celebrated all over the world every year as Human Rights Day.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights enumerates two sets of human rights. The first set of rights is civil and political rights which include right to freedom of speech, right to life and liberty, right to equality before law, right to have judicial remedy, right to move freely and right to vote or take part in the governance of one’s country. The second set of rights is economic and social rights. These rights include right to work, right to have rest and leisure, right to have a good standard of living, right to education and right to have equal pay for equal work.
All the above rights are important in their own ways. The united Nation has taken a great deal of interest in abolition of discrimination against women. One of the most serious of violations of human rights is the case of racial discrimination. South Africa for example, had for quite some time practised a policy called Apartheid. As a result the black people who were in majority there had no political rights.
The country was ruled by a minority regime of whites. The UN passed resolution to condemn its racist policy. Many countries including India broke their diplomatic relations with South Africa. However, the practice of Apartheid did not last for long. After a long struggle South Africa saw a significant change in this regard. For the first time in its histoiy, the people of South Africa got a Black President, Nelson Mandela, on the basis of one person one vote. Now, all the people of South Africa enjoy civil and political rights irrespective of race, colour and creed.
Human Rights must be ensured to all human beings for their prosperity and happiness. India, being a democratic country, provides such rights to its citizens. The makers of the Indian Constitution have incorporated many of the human rights mentioned above in our constitution. Our fundamental rights are based on these rights. These rights have great importance for the Indian people.
1. Rights to freedom of speech and expression enable a person to discuss freely for public and national well being.
2. Rights to have judicial remedy enable a citizen to move any court if his rights are encroached upon by the Government, any person or any agency.
3. Rights to Vote freely and to take part in the government of one’s country ensures political rights to a citizen.
4. Rights to have equal pay for equal work save a citizen from economic exploitation.
Thus human Rights are the basic human needs and demands. They are necessary for the all round development of a human being. Hence it is expected that every civilised state will incorporate these rights in its Constitution and try to ensure that its citizens enjoy them.