Human Rights in wake of changing national, global scenario

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PROF (DR) P.L.KAUL
Human Rights are inherent in nature and have come up in our society over the years. These are moral claims that are inalienable and inherent in every human being. Human Rights refer to the fundamental freedom and basic liberties without which men, women and children can’t live with respect and dignity. Rights to life, liberty and security are the fundamental rights which everybody posses. These are regulated by ‘rule of law’ and it is the duty of the Govt to enforce and protect these human rights ,irrespective of the cast, creed, colour, race, sex, religion and place of birth. However, the society is equally responsible for creating ideal situations for the mental, physical and social development of a person. The concept of human rights is rooted in freedom of thought and dignity of human beings. For protection of freedom of thought, Socrates became immortal, by drinking a cup of ‘hemlock’, ordered by democratic court. His disciple Plato furthered the cause of freedom of thought and so did Aristotle. Jesus Christ died on the cross defending the right to think and speak freely, for the welfare of the mankind.
Human Rights (and their violations) affect the daily lives of each and every individual. They are basic to the growth and development of all persons, communities, as well as nations. As human rights belong to all of us, it becomes necessary for every one of us to protect them. It should be enjoyed by all without discrimination with regard to race, language, religion, political, social, or national origin, birth or status. Human rights are essential and indispensable components of human progress and civilisation. There can be no sustainable development without promoting Human Rights.
History of human rights has been shaped by some very important events which took place in different parts of the globe, telling us the history of human struggle for securing and protecting human rights, such as The Magna Carta,1215(England), The French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the citizen (1789), the American bill of Rights (1791), Bolshevik Revolution in Russia (1917), Industrial Revolution in England, World War Second and ultimately, all these revolutions/events led to the establishment of United Nation in 1945 and human rights became its core issue. It was during World War II that conscience of mankind was aroused with the reported brutalities and large scale violations of human rights perpetrated by Hitler on innocent men, women and children of the Jewish community. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) incorporating 30 Articles was drafted by Noble Peace Prize Winner, Rene Cassin and was adopted by the General Assembly of United Nations in Paris on Dec 10,1948 which marks the first corner stone of international movement for human rights and in connections of this historic event, the world is celebrating every year international human rights day on 10th December. Following the historic event the General Assembly called upon all the Member Countries to publicise the text of the declaration that ‘recognition and respect for human rights is the foundation of freedom, peace and justice in the world’ and further signifies education as an essential instrument of awareness of human rights which enables an individual to understand his rights and those of others and disseminate and display these in all the schools and educational institutes. These rights are broadly classified as civil, and political and economic, social and cultural rights. The former includes right to life and liberty, prohibition of slavery and forced labour, right to equality before law, right to nationality, right to freedom of expression, religion, right to peaceful assembly. The latter includes right to social security, right to work, right to education, right to share scientific achievements. Under the direction and supervision of the United Nation, various conventions have been held to promote human rights such as prevention of the crime of genocide, elimination of racial discrimination, elimination of discrimination against women, rights of children, status of refugees etc.
(To be continued)

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