You are on page 1of 3

Article 21 has to be read along with Article 39(a) 1 and Article 372 of the Constitution for the

understanding and interpretation of Right to livelihood. The reading of above-mentioned


Articles clarifies that State is under an obligation to secure to the citizens an adequate means
of livelihood.3 Fundamental rights and DPSP which are negative and positive obligations of
the states, the Constituent assembly made it the responsibility of the Government to adopt a
middle path between individual liberty and public good.4
Personal liberty is not confined only to freedom from physical restraint, i.e. but includes a
full array of conduct which an individual is free to pursue, for instance, eat and drink what he
likes.5The Fundamental Rights and Directive principles have to be balanced. It is important to
pursue public interest but not at the cost of abridging fundamental rights. This balance is an
essential feature of the Constitution.6
Article 21 confers right to life as well as right to choose. 7In the case of Bombay Mutton
Dealer Assocaition8Bombay High Court held that, personal dietary choices of the public at
large should not be affected.9 Moreover, in Hinsa Virodhak Sanghs10 case, Supreme Court
held that, what one eats in ones personal affair and it is part of his right to privacy which is
included in Article 2111 of our Constitution as held by several decisions of the Supreme Court.
This was again reiterated by the Bombay beef ban case.
In the present case, residents of Dilli Pradesh have right to choice under Article 21 and an
entailing freedom to eat or drink what they feel like. A balance between fundamental rights
and directive principles of State policy needs to be struck and the blatant violation of their
fundamental rights warrants interference of this Court.
The Supreme Court has used Article 39(a) as a tool during the interpretation of Article 21 to
include therein the right to livelihood.12It was held in Olga Tellis v. Bombay Municipal
Corporation13that there is an obligation upon the State to secure to the citizens an adequate

1 Article 39(a), CONSTITUTION.


2 Article 37, CONSTITUTION.
3 Kehar Singh v. Union of India, (1989) 1 SCC 204 at 7.
4 I.R. Coelho v. State of Tamil Nadu, (2007) 2 SCC 1, at 101, 105, 49.
5 Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India, (1978) 1 SCC 248 at 171.
6 Id.
7 I .R. Coelho v. .State of T.N., (2007) 2 SCC 1 at 140.
8 The Bombay Mutton Dealer Association and Anr. v. State of Maharasthra and Ors.,
MANU/MH/2516/2015 at 13.
9 Id.
10 Hinsa Virodhak Sangh v. Mirzapur Moti Kuresh Jamat, (2008) 5 SCC 33 at 27.
11 R. Rajagopal v. State of T.N., [(1994) 6 SCC 632 at 26.
12 Olga Tellis v. Bombay Municipal Corporation, (1985) 3 SCC 545 at 32, 33.
13 Id.
means of livelihood and right to work. For this reason, right to livelihood is included in the
contents of right to life.14 Also, the State is under a negative obligation not to deprive a person
of the adequate means of livelihood of the citizens.15

The apex court also stated that reasonable restriction imposed should be independently
examined and that they cannot negate te requirement of part III16

The state is under obligation under Art 21 of the constitution to secure for the citizen an
adequate means of livelihood.17 The Supreme court stated that that the right to livelihood is
included in the Right to life.18 In the present case it is clearly visible that the state is taking
away the right to livelihood from the canteen owners in the university bereft of any
reasonable objective behind the Act as has been explained above in the previous contention.
Hence the council would like humbly beg the honourable court to strike down this Act as it is
against the Right to livelihood.
It is also humbly submitted that Article 21 confers a right to choose under right to privacy
which is included in right to life, this has been explained in various cases by the Supreme
Court.19 The Supreme court in the case of National Legal Service Authority v. Union of India
stated that all those aspects which go to make a citizens life meaningful and it protects
persona autonomy and right of privacy.20 In the case of Hinsa Virodhak Sangh21 that the right
to choose ones food is a part of right of privacy and reiterating the same principle the
Bombay High Court in the Bombay Beef Ban case stated that what one eats is his personal
affair and is a part of his right to privacy, and such act should not affect the personal dietary
choses at large.22 Based on the following principles established above the council would like

14 Id.
15 Id.
16 Akhil Bhartiya Soshit Karmachari Sangh v. UOI, (1981) 1 SCC 246 ; Pathumma v State of
Kerala, AIR 1978 SC 771
17 Kehar Singh v. Union of India, (1989) 1 SCC 204.
18 Olga Tellis v. Bombay Municipal Corporation, (1985) 3 SCC 545
19 Kehar Singh v. Union of India, (1989) 1 SCC 204; Maneka Gandhi v. UOI, (1978)1 SCC
248; R. Rajagopal v. State of Tamil Nadu, (2005) 1 SCC 496 ; Ramlila Maidan Incident, In re
(2012): SCC, SC, 5,
20 (2014) 5 SCC 438
21
22
to humbly submit that the right to life of the students of the university is being infringed
because they have the right to eat whatever kind of food they want and the state cannot
infringe their such right.