Human Rights and Duties

what is the importance of human rights and duties and human rights transformed positive rights and positive duties
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Published Date:03-07-2017
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UNIVERSITY OF PUNE I IN NT TR RO OD DU UC CT TI IO ON N T TO O H HU UM MA AN N R RI IG GH HT TS S A AN ND D D DU UT TI IE ES SUNIT I BASIC CONCEPTS This Unit will briefly introduce the basic concepts of values and the linkage that they have with human rights. These conceptual perspectives play a significant role for the promotion and realization of human rights in any society. Values help to crystallize any legal action, and play a very important role in the development of a society. The strict adherence of each of these values not only helps in the realization of human rights but to establish the concept of one world as envisaged by international law. This unit focuses in without much debate and discussion on the theoretical perspective, the meaning of each one of the value. It briefly, highlights the significance of human rights education. However, some of the concepts are dealt in detail in Unit II, while explaining the origin and concept of right to the extent necessary. Significance of Value Value in general is a part of philosophy. Philosophy is one of the basic subjects which deals with the basic problems of mankind. In its discourse, it deals with issues such as existence, knowledge, values, reasons, mind, and language. It's theoretical perspective developed by various theoreticians mainly based on a rational approach with critical outlook. Basing on the parameters of value, a number of other aspects developed to regulate the behavioral patterns of man. These values such as dignity, liberty, equality justice, ethics, and morals, have had their significant impact to shape the human relations in a society. These philosophical concepts have a profound impact on law. The main aim and function of Law in any society is to regulate the relations between men and to alleviate the intensity of conflicts to promote peace, security, good and orderly behaviour of mankind to establish a conflict free society. This being the main function of law, it absorbs all the essential tools from every field of study with a critical outlook. This in turn will help to analyse each issue and lay norms to develop a rational human mind to achieve maximum results in their inter-relationships with each other. Since the concept of right and its exercise and regulation centered round basing on a number of values developed from ancient to modern times, they have had a great impact in the realization, promotion, and protection of human rights. In view of the linkage and importance that values play a significant role in the promotion and realization of human rights; the different concepts of values are examined in brief. 1 1Human Values "The value concept… is able to unify the apparently diverse interests of all the sciences concerned with human behavior."……Rokeach. The above view of the psychologist makes it clear, the concept of value and its relationship with the behavioural pattern of individuals in a society. In general, we think of values that are commonly followed by us in day to day life. These values vary from person to person, depending on their experiences and circumstances in which they grow. However, there are certain basic values which are common to all. They are life, liberty, security, freedom, and success, security to life, kindness, pain and pleasure. Depending on the circumstances, which each person grow up considers which value is important to him. But adhering to values which are common to all, in the longer run develop a society to establish peace for the progressive all round development of all the sections of a society. This will help to learn to live with unity in diversity. According to a number of scholars, conceptually values are beliefs which are subjective in their exercise by each individual. Values motivate people to achieve their goals. Values transcend time and territory and develop relationships and regulate the behavioral patterns of individuals. These being the central aspects of values, a number of scholars identified ten basic values, which motivate and regulate the behavior of human beings in achieving their goals. They are : m Self-destruction, which promotes an independent thought which results in a judicious decision making process in creating or exploring the goal. m Stimulation creates excitement, novelty and challenges in life. m Hedonism (Self Satisfaction) brings in pleasure and sensuous gratification for oneself. m Achievement demonstrates, the competence of individuals according to the standards of society. m Power brings in social status and prestige, control over people, and resources. m Security brings in harmonious relationship between individuals, to guide the society to establish a compatible environment for people to lead a life with pleasure and groom their freedoms. m Conformity to social standards mainly regulates the behaviour of individuals, 2Introduction to Human Rights & Duties and prevent the wrong doing activities by individuals to themselves, and towards one another in the society. m Tradition promotes the qualities of respect to the practices that are inherent in society. m Religion promotes the innovation of knowledge and furtherance of values to the achievement of peace and security. It teaches a happy sharing of the benefits that are derived through the promotion of knowledge. m Benevolence establishes the belief, and enhances the qualities of welfare to promote the interests of the individuals with whom each one interacts in their day to day activities. m Lastly, universalism promotes the qualities of understanding, appreciation, tolerance, and protection for the welfare of people. It takes care of developing harmonious living, and to work for the benefit of advancement of scientific knowledge, and to share the resources equally. The philosophy of human rights is similar with that of the above values. Therefore, values are one of the basic aspects of human rights. The strict adherence of human rights restores not only to values, but also in turn able to achieve peace, security and harmonious living community without any kind of discrimination that exist between individuals and nation-states. Dignity Dignity is another value that regulates the behaviour of individuals. Dignity is a relative term with regulatory nature. It prescribes the norms and ethical standards needs to be followed and adopted. In the day to day inter-relationships, individuals are expected to behave with one another in a dignified and honest manner. This concept dictates that every one of us has to exercise due caution and care in our relations without undermining the capacities of other persons. Further, it teaches us not to create a situation wherein others are made to undergo either emotional, psychological, physical, tense situations, or to harm their personality. Since dignity plays a vital role, in regulating the human relations and for the furtherance of human rights, (especially, the basic rights of liberty, equality, and freedom), the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), in no uncertain terms 3declared that all individuals are equal in the eye of law. All are deserves to be treated with utmost respect without harming the dignity of others at all times. If people across the world follow the ethical norm of dignity without any deviance, the realisation of right would be easy. This fundamental norm applies to individuals and States to follow with strict adherence. In the modern context though a number of conventions, covenants, and declarations have been adopted in the international arena, to promote human rights on the concept of dignity. The lack of adherence by individuals and nation-states brought in untold sorrow, and miseries to mankind. The non adherence to ethical values, especially, indecent behaviour of individuals at times, posing a number of problems in the contemporary era. This in turn has an effect in the promotion and realisation of human rights. Liberty Liberty is another concept which play a vital role in the promotion of human rights. Liberty is an ancient concept. This concept has its roots in the political philosophy. A number of philosophers like, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and many more have articulated Liberty in different contexts. In simple terms, liberty means, human beings are free to regulate their relations, and are able to govern their relations, behave at their own will, and be responsible for their acts. The concept of liberty is centred around responsibility or duty. Basing on the acts performed by individuals, liberty can be enjoyed or achieved. If the acts are bad or performed with an intention to defray anybody or deprive them of their legal claims, they not only affect the rights of others, but also of their own in the long run. This in turn will have an effect on the realisation of their rights. The concept of liberty is the basics for the development of a right. According to Hobbes, every individual is empowered to enjoy their freedoms freely without the interference of any other person. In his social contract theory, he argued that the divine will of kings to regulate the relations and to restrict the freedoms of individuals is antithesis to liberty of individuals. The enlightenment of liberty by various political and legal philosophers, led to a number of political revolutions across the world. This in turn led to establish democratic societies on the basis of liberty of individuals to choose their leaders. In the contemporary era, the excessive arguments for liberty, and its indiscriminate exercise without strict adherence to duty by individuals in their 4Introduction to Human Rights & Duties numerous acts, again resulted in bringing miseries to the world. In order to resolve the problems and to provide a problemfree world, the UN took a number of legal steps for the promotion of human rights. The aim of these acts of UN is to regulate the behaviour of the mankind and to guide them to discharge their duties to uplift the moral and ethical values. This in turn will help to restore liberty in its true sense and makes individuals to be happy for their legal and justified actions. Apart from the above, it is the duty of nation-states also to adhere to the principles of international law and human rights in their relations, respecting the concept of liberty of the other nations and their citizens. The Strict adherence to liberty and practice of self restraint alone would yield the desired results in protecting the rights of every citizen as guaranteed by law. Equality Equality is another important component of human rights. From ancient to modern times, people are fighting to achieve this in terms of its practical application to each situation. In general, equality proposes to bring all the people into one category, and apply the principles of law, and justice without any distinction, whatsoever it may be among the individuals. Equality is a relative concept which may be distinguished basing on a number of factors, and the enjoyment of rights on an equal footing. The aim of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Constitutions of the various countries including India are to treat all the people on an equal footing without any kind of discrimination. This may be referred to formal equality, wherein in the eyes of law all are equal. Although, all people are numerically considered as equal in the eyes of law, in providing the amenities or distribution of resources, all may not be considered or treated as equal in reality. This is because of the socio, economic, political and cultural conditions that prevail in each society. In order to uplift the people who are not equal on any ground specified above, they need to be given certain concessions and facilities to improve their status and to reach the equal status with that of others who are on a high pedestal. 5To achieve the rigour of equality and to fill the gap especially on socio-economic, and cultural grounds, the principles of international law of human rights provides for the necessary concessions to be extended, to people at the national level by states. This will result in to achieve the status of equality of all in the eye of law. Once they achieve the equal status in all respects, the concessions extended to specific group of people to uplift their status, may be withdrawn by the state. The same principle applies to states at the International level. Accordingly the developed states need to extend concessions to the developing states. Justice Justice in simple terms may be defined as righteousness, fair and to be treated on just and equitable grounds. Justice is an important concept which has attracted a number of fields especially, law and philosophy. To achieve absolute justice, scholars have prescribed a number of factors. Basing on the various factors that are relevant to each society, and to fill the gap between unequals and equals, from ancient to modern times, a number of scholars have advocated various theories to achieve the concept of justice. In order to measure the concept of Justice, a number of tools are required. To achieve perfect justice, it lays its emphasis on concepts of equality, morality and ethics. The aim of human rights is to provide such stable conditions to everyone by the states, which alone could help to achieve the rights in a justiciable manner. According to Plato, Justice being the highest value, and to attain it, an individual has to be provided with all the necessary conditions to realise the right, and to discharge his duties towards society. It again lay emphasis on the actors and the state as well to discharge every single obligation with devotion of duty and respect for other values. 6Introduction to Human Rights & Duties Ethics and Morals Ethics and Morals are considered as equal concepts. However, there exists a subtle difference between these two. Morals deal with the personal character of an individual. On the other hand, Ethics lays its importance on a social system, which regulates the code of conduct of a group of individuals. In other words, the morals need to be applied in each society depending on the values that are acceptable by a society. From the perspective of human rights, the concept of freedom and liberty being basic principles forms part of moral principles. The concept of Justice, Equality and the participation of individuals in the socio-cultural aspects of the community are ethical aspects. Accordingly, every human being in a society is responsible at all times to strive to achieve human rights as a moral or ethical subject of society. Value is the central issue of ethics. Ethics is a normative science of human conduct in society, which differentiates between right and wrong, good or bad, proper or improper. The standard, which makes one to differentiate good from bad or right from wrong, is a value. Ethics with reference to human rights presupposes freedom as a necessary pre-condition. A free man can take his decision of action and such a decision can be evaluated as good or bad, right or wrong, proper or improper. Goodness is the highest of value. Goodness is objective, universal and rational. Some basic values are: courage, tolerance, benevolence, kindness and friendship. Values are instrumental or absolute, intrinsic or extrinsic. Values provide a standard to decide that an action is good. The basic issues of ethics/moral philosophy are: freedom, duty, rights, responsibility, happiness and goodness. Values are based on common or social consent. They are shared by all in the society. The above brief discussion of the various concepts, highlight the significance that human rights can never be achieved in toto until and unless, we the people of the United Nations (which includes the nation-states), discharge the responsibilities with utmost sincerity. This in turn enables us to achieve, universalization of human rights without any kind of deviation to race, sex, language, religion, region, etc. This leads one to learn how to live in a diversified world, more particularly in the contemporary era of fourth phase of globalization, wherein the concept of unity in diversity assumes greater significance than in yester years. 7Unity in Diversity Unity in diversity in general means, people of different backgrounds basing on their socio-economical, politico-cultural perspectives have to live like a single family. This means, the different faiths and characters that people posses have to live in a compatible manner under a single legal roof governed by a State. The same is applicable to people around the world, and the nation-states learn to live as one community. This being the main aim of international law to establish a one world concept, it had given birth to human rights. Its aim is to achieve, the aspirations of profoundly divided humanity by setting a common standard of norms for all people and all nations. To accomplish the one world concept, the mankind has a responsibility to learn to live harmoniously. Further, it will enable us to achieve the basic tenets of life, liberty, equality, dignity and freedom of thought and expression with due care and caution to promote the rights of all the people living in different political systems. This will in turn enable us to claim legitimately the protection extended by human rights. And, to justify the existence of man as a human kind living under different political regions. It will help further, to establish the fundamental goal of United Nations to resolve innumerable problems that are haunting us both nationally and internationally. Nearer home, the concept of 'vasudhaiva kutumbakam', in the Indian context advocates the same ideology of living together of mankind with values and morals, which alone ultimately establish a conflict free society. Meaning and Significance of Human Rights Education Education should encompass values such as peace, non-discrimination, equality, justice, non-violence, tolerance, to live in peace and security and respect for human dignity. These objectives can be achieved only through imparting human rights education, which is an integral part of right to education. Human Rights and Duties Education helps in achieving a comprehensive growth of every society. According to the UN decade document for human rights education (1995-2004), human rights education means, “a lifelong process by which people at all levels of development and in all strata of society learn respect for the dignity of others and the means and methods of ensuring that respect in all societies.” 8Introduction to Human Rights & Duties From the above definition, it is clear that people living in any society have to discharge their duties with utmost sincerity at all times without any deviation. Such practices will promote the freedoms of all and could transform a society to achieve its objectives. This being the concern of human rights education, impartation of it results in, to achieving the principles of democracy, rule of law, and social justice. Further, it will help to establish peace and security. It further enables us to achieve an all round socio-economic, political, and cultural sustainability. Objectives of Human Rights Education m Human Rights Education promotes respect for human rights of all individuals. m It develops the knowledge, skills, and values of human rights. m It develops the socio-psychological, human personality. m It helps people and policy makers to evolve the ways and means to overcome the problems of each nation and that of the International Community. m It helps to foster understanding, tolerance, gender equality and m Develops friendship among all nations and eliminates racial, ethnic, religious, and linguistic differences. A number of models are developed to impart the above values of human rights education. Among the various models, the following three considered as the vital ones, to achieve the aims and objectives of human rights. 1. Values and Awareness Model: This model focuses on transmitting basic knowledge of human rights and to foster the integration into public values through a curriculum of educational institutions. 2. Accountability Model: This model focuses on the ways in which professional responsibilities to inculcate directly monitoring human rights violations and advocating the authorities to protect the rights of the people. 3. Transformational Model: This model aims to empower the individuals in order to recognize the abuses of human rights and their prevention. These being the core concepts of human rights education, the UN has framed guidelines to propagate human rights through various methods and means both in the International and the National levels. Summary: 9¦ Value being an important aspect of life, it forms part of Law and Society. Value being a central point regulates the relations between individuals; scholars have identified number of points. By adhering to these points, an individual can achieve the goals in life. ¦ Dignity being another aspect of value regulates the behaviour of individuals. The human relations and the exercise of human rights depend on the dignity, is the most important aspect in the basic rights of liberty, equality and freedom. The entire human rights law has been developed basing on these aspects. ¦ Liberty is another important concept. According to various scholars, duty alone protects the concept of liberty. It is this concept that has given a basis for right. If liberty is not exercised properly, it will result in upsetting the applecart of rights. ¦ Equality is an important component of human rights. Equality proposes to bring in all people under one category. Any kind of inequalities are in existence, it is for the States to eliminate them through a legal mechanism. This will result into a classless society. ¦ The aim of human rights is to do justice to every individual. In order to achieve perfect justice, all the qualities of human kind and the values need to be followed by every individual to achieve the realistic concept of justice. ¦ Ethics deals with personal character of individuals. Morals lay emphasis on the social system. The strict adherence of ethical practices alone makes a society healthy which in turn could help the people to realise their human rights. ¦ There exist a number of differences between various individuals in a society. However, obedience to human rights will result in living together with unity in diversity among the individuals. The outcome of it will bridge the gap between nation-states and to establish the concept of one world. ¦ Human Rights Education teaches us the practice of various values to be adhered. At the same time, the knowledge of it, transforms individuals accountable for their acts either at personal level or societal level. The knowledge of human rights would also lead us to establish an orderly, peaceful, and friendly society both at the international and national spheres. 10Introduction to Human Rights & Duties Model Questions Write only one Word answer to the questions 1. Which subject in general deals with values? (A) Philosophy 2. What does dignity conveys? (A) A Decent behaviour 3. Which concept gave the basis for right? (A) Liberty 4. Ethics deals with what aspect ? (A) Personal character 5. Human Rights Education is…………. (A) life Long Process Multiple Choice Questions 1. What does Unity in Diversity exactly means? (A)Single family (B) living together with differences (C) a place for everyone (D) living together with respect to every one's recognised dignified practices 2. What is advocated by Ethical Values? (A)Social system (B) compassionate living (C) Devotional living (D) Rule making 3. What is the main aim of Human Rights? (A) To teach Morals and ethics (B) to develop friendly relations (C) to make people sensible (D) to establish peace, security and one world 4. Values Model is part of which of the basic concept? (A) Dignity (B) Human Rights Education (C) Liberty (D) Justice Answer : (1) D (2) A (3) D (4) B 11UNIT II Perspective of Rights and Duties This Unit will briefly summarize the meaning of rights and their importance and the conceptual perspective in brief. It will examine the relationship between rights and duties and the values that bind on the individual in discharging their duties towards one another in a civilized society. (A) Rights Etymology of `right': The word which we use in the modern English terminology has its origin from the old English right or reht. In the early periods, it had been used with different nomenclatures in various languages across the World. Accordingly, it has gained a number of meanings, depending on the situation with a wide variety of expressions. In the language of law, they are moral, ethical entitlements which need to be conferred and exercised as framed by an authority of law. Basing on the different expressions, there exist a considerable debate in the academic circles, especially in the fields like, Political Science, Philosophy, Anthropology, and Law about the foundation, meaning, and function of right in different contexts. Before discussing the various types of rights, a simplified meaning and analysis is provided here for an easy understanding of various facets of a right. Meaning of a Right: From a historical point of view, `right' in its objective sense is described as right or just actions that individuals have to discharge to maintain harmonious relationships between themselves. In the modern or subjective sense, its definition is long and divisive. Whatever may be the controversy, and scholarly discussion that surrounds the historical origins, and the different meanings that `Right' has, in general rights mean- a legal sanction or normative value. Analysis of Right : In its analytical perspective, “right” has two parts (form and function). One is the internal structure of right (their form); and the other is what rights do for those who hold them (function). Accordingly, right is a combination of claim and duty. This 12Introduction to Human Rights & Duties means a right confers certain liberties or privileges and imposes duties upon individuals to exercise while claiming their rights. A number of jurists define the concept of exercise of rights with duty as positive and negative rights. Accordingly, the person who is possessive of positive rights entitled to provision of some goods or services. A holder of negative right is entitled to non-interference. In the eyes of law, Right confers on a person certain amount of liberties and privileges. At the same time impose obligations to discharge. Furthermore, possessing a right should also enable a person to exercise it. This part of empowerment mechanism could be achieved only by imparting the values of human rights education. However, basing on the common usage of the term philosophers and political analysts in subjects like philosophy, politics, law and logic, have defined A FREE HUMAN the rights in a number of categories. Accordingly, rights may be broadly NATURAL RIGHTS Law defined as 1) Natural Rights; 2) Legal Rights; 3) Claim rights; 4) Liberty Rights; 5) Positive Rights; 6) Negative free will/Liberty Life Freedom Principles Rights; 7) Individual Rights and 8) Group Rights. Natural Rights: The concept of Natural rights is closely associated with the philosophy or theory of Natural law. According to this theory, nature or God alone regulates the wisdom and the activities of men. The kings being the divine origin, as representatives of God, the rules framed by them were considered divine in nature. But in the age of enlightenment ( or Age of Reason) of the eighteenth century a number of Western advocators like, Hobbes, Locke, Hugo Grotius, Rousseau, Samuel Pufendorf,, challenged the origin of divine concept to natural law. A natural right is nothing but, rights based on just, fair and reasonable. This means, the individuals unite themselves to form political societies through mutual consent, and agree to form a government of their own. It will enable them to lead their life through common rules and regulations framed by either them or their representatives. At the same time, they accept a set of legal and moral duties to be observed or bound by them in the exercise of their rights in order to live in peace and security without any violence. 13 However, this being the central philosophy advocated by all philosophers of natural law, there is a difference of opinion that exists among them. A section of modern naturalists argue that since human rights are closely associated with the concept of natural rights, there exist no difference between natural and human rights; FOUNDING FATHERS GOD RIGHTS INDIVIDUALIST CITY/STATE FEDERAL INDIVIDUALIST VIEW both are one and the same. But some traditionalists argue that since natural rights are not framed by men and are the dictates of right of reason of nature, both cannot be equated. According to them, since natural rights are being above the power of any authority either state or international bodies, and are universal in nature, they cannot be equated with human rights, because they are adapted by human society through an international body and not of divine origin. A close examination of both the above pictures clearly explains the theoretical differences. In a simple manner, natural rights essentially are the Life, Liberty and Freedom that an individual possess and the way to live without any disturbance or interference by others. Accordingly, by birth, the rights are inherited with the body of the individual as the gifts of God or nature. Hence, they are inherent or inalienable rights. The second picture explains the arguments of the modern natural philosophers' view that though a human being is born with free will, as a social animal one has to have minimal limitations in the exercise of their natural rights. Because, man himself created the modern concept of state, they have to adhere to the laws framed by the state, so as not to disturb the rights of others. These rights are otherwise referred to as Legal Rights that are sanctioned by the authority of law which entitles a claim to an individual to have his rights enforced legally. Legal Rights: Legal Rights means, rights that are guaranteed to citizens of a country by law to enjoy certain freedoms without any fear or favour. Legal rights also referred to as statutory rights, bestowed by a particular government to the governed and are relative 14Introduction to Human Rights & Duties to specific cultures and governments. These rights are enumerated or codified into legal statutes by a legislative body. These rights may differ from country to country depending upon the constitution and culture that they adopted. Nevertheless, at the same time legal rights impose an obligation on other people not to exceed the prescribed limits of law. Claim Rights and Liberty Rights Claim rights means, the rights that impose an obligation on another person to respect the right of the other person. Liberty rights means, rights that are to be exercised at free will by the holder of rights, without any obligation on another person in exercise of his/her right. For example, a person has liberty to speak freely as he likes, is a liberty right. But at the same time, if it affects the rights or hurts the reputation of another person, then it turns into a claim right. Positive And Negative Rights A section of philosophers drew a distinction, which is thin and narrow between positive and negative rights. Positive rights means, rights for which a person is expected to discharge some service or to do good independently or to the society as a whole. Negative rights impose an obligation on others not to interfere with the liberty or independence of another holder of rights. In the language of law since both rights are passive rights, it is difficult always to classify these rights in a strict sense. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) has both the characteristics of Positive and Negative rights. Many scholars argue that since there is a co-existence between the two concepts; a distinction is not necessary. Examples for Positive Rights: These rights normally impose duty either on the state or on society or a group of individuals in satisfying the claims of owners of rights, (for example) Right to Education, Right to Health, Social Security etc. In the Indian context these are described as the Directive Principles of State Policy under the Constitution of India. It is not easy to achieve this category of rights as they depend on various factors including the resources. These rights are referred as Economic, Social and Cultural rights in the language of human rights. Negative Rights Examples: The rights normally impose a duty on every individual as a moral and legal obligation to refrain from causing injury to the exercise 15of the right of other person. Right to freedom of speech and expression, right to life and liberty, right to equality, right to property, right to be heard right to speedy trial and justice, right to worship, freedom of religion, right to legal remedy etc. are referred to as Civil and Political Rights in the UDHR. Individual and Group Rights Individual rights mean the rights that belong to an individual alone. These rights are mainly political, economic, or legal in nature. These rights can be exercisable by individuals to enjoy their life and liberty without any interference of anybody including the state. However, the individual rights have positive and negative elements. Positive element obligates a person to discharge the right according to law. The negative element prohibits any act that is not permitted by law. Group Rights means rights that are enjoyed by a group and as well as individually. For example, the rights of disabled persons are considered as group rights. They promote the rights of the disabled as a group. At the same time, an individual disabled person also could claim the rights independently of the group. From the above brief discussion, a right may be defined as something that one possess to exercise either naturally, legally, or socially with a moral/legal duty to act without violating the right of others. Accordingly, a right has five elements in it. They are: 1. A right holder ( which the subject of a right) has claim to 2. Some substance of it ( the object of right) 3. Which he or she may assert, demand, enjoy or enforce (exercising a right) 4. Against some individual or group ( the bearer of the correlative duty) 5. Citing in support of his or her claim on some particular ground (the justification of a right) To exercise a right at least two persons are necessary and the claim that they want to exercise should have a legal basis to justify in the eyes of law. Universal Rights Universal rights means rights that every individual would able to exercise their freedoms irrespective of their country of origin, residence freely without any interference by the state or any other person subject to legal limitations. These rights 16Introduction to Human Rights & Duties promote the dignity and the worth of an individual at all times. Hence, they impose obligations on every state to protect and promote the dignity and the freedom of individuals without any discrimination as to race, sex, language, or religion. Since these rights are the minimal in the life of an individual, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the former President of USA in his joint address to the US Congress on January 6,1941 advocated freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from fear and freedom from want as the basic principles for the worth and dignity of an individual. Basing on the above principles, the ideology of freedom of the individual advocated for many centuries. The United Nations in its Charter adopted on October 24, 1945 recognized human rights as a part and parcel of international law. Accordingly, the concept of human rights took their birth in international law. They in turn impose an obligation on every state to promote them without any discrimination. These rights have been further elaborated through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted on December 10, 1948. Though there exists a difference of opinion about the Universality of human rights between political philosophers and scholars of international law, in view of their wide acceptance by 193 member states of the United Nations, they are no doubt constituted as universal rights. A right is that which a man demands from others justifiability. A responsibility is that which makes a man accountable to his actions and consequences of his actions and conduct. A right can be moral, ethical, legal or social or cultural. Rights are treated as moral when they are natural i.e. enhance the existence. A rational right is justifiable and not emotive. A right has to be based on reasons and it has to be always general. (B) Nature and Concept of Duties Definitional differences between Obligation and Duty The word obligation commonly refers to as a synonym of duty or vice-versa. However, strictly speaking there exists a difference between the two. According to H.L.A. Hart, duty and obligation are distinct to each other. A right exists without any correspondence to an obligation incurred or created, at times. Whereas duty arises from position, status, role. This means every time a duty has a connection with the position of person, which is linked with right. Hence, an obligation may not correspond to a duty at all times. It is only usage or practice of referring to right as a synonym of duty. In the eyes of law they are different, and especially in the area of rights. 17The above distinction is described by a simple example : A invited his friend X to a dinner party. X promised him that he would attend without fail. However, X did not attend the party. In this case, X has an obligation to go to the dinner party. But by not attending, he has not either violated or breached the right of A. If a person occupies a job in an office or an organization he has, a duty to discharge all the legal work associated with the job, whether he likes it or not. One may wonder why then the concept of obligation and duty are referred to as synonyms. This may be due to the fact that political, social, or moral obligations need to be fulfilled or discharged, which are moral in character are also considered as duties many a times. For example, a person should not tell a lie at any point of time. However, in a given circumstance by revealing a truth, which may affect the life of a person, he may tell a lie, though he has a duty to speak the truth. Due to this type of interchanges between laws that are moral and legal, the word duty is equivalent to `obligation' or `ought'. On this point, there exists a vast literature in both philosophy and legal fields. The skeletal difference that exists between the two was analysed in the ancient philosophy of India on the basis of Dharma, which encompasses both moral and legal duties to be discharged by all without any deviance. Concept of Duty As discussed above, normally, duty is linked with `obligation'. The concept of duty arises from fulfillment of a requirement. Duties arise in several ways and means, such as moral duties, legal duties, parental duties, societal duties, and civil duties etc. However, from the point of view of law, duties arise from legal norms or requirements. They have to be discharged, the way it was prescribed. Accordingly, the actions constitute as right or wrong basing on the discharge of duty. If one acts contrary to a duty, it constitutes a wrong. (For example, a legal norm tells us not to speak ill of others which will affect their decency, if speaks ill of others, it constitutes as wrong.). A duty imposes an obligation to respect the rights of others and the society. Hence, rights and duties are reciprocal. A right is demand and a duty is an expectation. 18Introduction to Human Rights & Duties The different types of duties Duties may be distinguished between (1) natural and acquired duties, (2) positive and negative duties, (3) perfect and imperfect duties and (4) prima facie and all things considered as duties. (A) Natural and Acquired Duties Natural duties bind all of us without any specification by any institution or body. Each one of us discharge these duties voluntarily. For example: not to harm others, not to tell lies, not to misuse the freedoms, duty to respect others, not to injure the innocent, not to beat children, to uphold truth and justice, etc. Acquired duties are duties undertaken by individuals by virtue of something they have done, or as a particular relationship, which they might have with others. This means, certain duties are legal, and need to perform the acquired obligations basing on one's willingness. If refused to perform after consented to discharge, it attracts legal consequences. Another type of acquired duties results from special relationships that individuals undertake as groups, often referred to as responsibilities. For example, parents discharging their duties towards their children, doctors to patients, and lawyers to their clients. These duties assumed by individuals to exercise automatically by accepting to act in a specific role. (B) Positive and Negative Duties According to another legal jurist John Rawls, positive duties require us to do good. On the other hand, negative duties impose restrictions on doing bad or refraining from acting. Helping the poor may be a positive duty, which may not have any obligation. However, not to tell lies or not to harm others is a negative duty, which imposes an obligation. (C) Perfect and Imperfect Duties Perfect and Imperfect duties appear similar to that of the positive and negative duties. According to Prof Immanuel Kant, a German philosopher, they are not similar. Perfect duties expect individuals to discharge the incurred obligations as per the goal that is set at all times without any deviation. Imperfect duties have no rigidity. Imperfect duties are duties that are never completed in its true spirit. The performance of these duties depends on circumstances. According to Kant, it is difficult to cultivate one's own talent is an example for imperfect duty. 19