Monday, 31 January 2022

Directive Principles of State Policy - By Isha

 Directive Principles of State Policy – By Isha 


These Principles provide the Social and Economic Principles for the Indian Democracy and establishment of a Welfare state.


Directive Principles of State Policy are provided in Part IV ( Articles 36 to 51) of the Constitution and are not justifiable. Article 36 states that “ the meaning of the State” is same as in Part III of the Constitution, Article 12 of Part III states that the “ the State includes the Government and Parliament of India and the Government or the Legislature of each of the states and all local or other authorities within the territory of India or under the control of Government of India. Article 37 provides the provisions contained in Part IV shall not be enforceable by any court, but the principles therein laid down are nevertheless fundamental in the governance of the country and it is the duty of State to apply these principles in making of laws. Their main thrust is towards making India a welfare state. The Directive Principles are as follows:

  1. Article 36 defines the State. Article 12 also defines State.

  2. Article 37 provides that provisions of the Directive Principles shall not be enforceable by any court, but these principles are fundamental in the governance of the country and it shall be the duty of the State to apply these principles in making laws.

  3. Article 38 – State to secure a social order for the promotion of welfare of the people.

  4. Article 39- State shall regulate ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, prevent concentration of wealth and income, ensure their more equitable distribution, and enact laws to protect the interests of the workers.

  • Article 39A – Equal justice and free legal aid

  1. Article 40 – Organisation of village panchayats.

  2. Article 41 – Right to work, to education and to public assistance in cases of unemployment, old age, sickness and disablement etc.

  3. Article 42 – Provision for just and humane conditions of work and maternity relief.

  4. Article 43 – Provision for living wage, conditions of work ensuring to decent standard of life and full enjoyment of leisure and social and cultural opportunities for all workers, agricultural, industrial or otherwise and provision for the promotion of cottage industries in rural areas.

  • Article 43A – Workers Participation in management of industries.

  • Article 43B – Added by 97th amendment provides for promotion of cooperative societies by State.

  1. Article 44 – Uniform Civil Code for the citizens.

  2. Article 45 – Provision for early childhood care and education to children below the age of six years 

  3. Article 46 – Promotion of educational and economic interests of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and other weaker sections.

  4. Article 47 – Duty of the State to raise the level of nutrition and the standard of living and to improve public health.

  5. Article 48 – Organisation of agriculture and animal husbandry.

  • Article 48A – Protection and improvement of environment and safeguarding of forests and wildlife.

  1. Article 49 – Protection of monuments and places and objects of national importance.

  2. Article 50 – Separation of judiciary from executive.

  3. Article 51 – Promotion of international peace and security.


Earlier there was a controversy over the question of priority in the case of conflict between a law implementing directive principles coming into conflict with fundamental rights. Now this controversy has been resolved by the Supreme Court in Minerva Mills case 1980, that there is a fine balance between the directive principles and fundamental rights and the Court as far as possible should read the two parts of the Constitution harmoniously. Today, the Supreme Court has itself started enforcing directive principles, as is evident from Sarla Mudgal’s case ( Sarla Mudgal, President, Kalyani v. Union of India, AIR 1955 SC 1531), where the Supreme Court issued directives to the union of India to take steps to implement a Uniform Civil Code.

It may be noted that there are certain other directives addressed to the State in other Parts of the Constitution. They are

  • Article 350(A) which enjoins every state and every local authority within the state to provide adequate facilities for instruction in the mother tongue at the primary stage of education to children belonging to linguistic minority groups.

  • Article 351 which enjoins the Union to promote the spread of Hindi language and to develop it so that it may serve as a medium of expression of all the elements of the composite culture of India.

  • Article 335 which enjoins that the claims of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes shall be taken into consideration, consistently with the maintenance of efficiency of administration, in making of appointments to services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or of any State.






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