The Info List - Fundamental Rights

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This is a list of universally recognized rights which are described as fundamental in several international treaties and national constitutions.


* 1 List of important rights * 2 Legal meaning in the United States

* 3 Specific jurisdictions

* 3.1 Canada
* 3.2 European Union * 3.3 India
* 3.4 United States

* 4 See also * 5 Footnotes


Some universally recognized rights seen as fundamental, i.e., contained in the United Nations
United Nations
Universal Declaration of Human Rights , the U.N. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights , or the U.N. International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights , include the following:

* Right to self-determination * Right to liberty * Right to due process of law * Right to freedom of movement * Right to freedom of thought * Right to freedom of religion * Right to freedom of expression * Right to peaceful assembly * Right to freedom of association


Though many fundamental rights are also widely considered human rights, the classification of a right as "fundamental" invokes specific legal tests courts use to determine the constrained conditions under which the United States government and various state governments may limit these rights. In such legal contexts, courts determine whether rights are fundamental by examining the historical foundations of those rights and by determining whether their protection is part of a longstanding tradition. Individual states may guarantee other rights as fundamental. That is, States may add to fundamental rights but can never diminish or infringe upon fundamental rights by legislative processes. Any such attempt, if challenged, may involve a "strict scrutiny" review in court.



Main article: Charter of Rights and Freedoms
Charter of Rights and Freedoms

In Canada
, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms
Charter of Rights and Freedoms
outlines four Fundamental Freedoms. These are freedom of:

* Conscience and religion * Thought, belief, opinion, and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication * Peaceful assembly * Association.


Main article: Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union
Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union

Europe has no identical doctrine (It would be incompatible with the more restrained role of judicial review in European law.) However, E.U. law recognizes many of the same human rights and protects them through other means.

See also: Copenhagen criteria , and European Convention on Human Rights , which every member state of the EU has to comply with and for which the European Court of Human Rights
European Court of Human Rights
has final appellate jurisdiction.


The Indian fundamental rights, contrasted with such rights contained in the U. S. bill of rights, present several peculiarities.The fundamental rights in India
are far more elaborate than in the U. S. A. Thus, for example, the U. S. bill of rights (first ten amendments) only names some rights. The Supreme Court, through the process of judicial review decides the limitations on these rights. Main article: Fundamental Rights in India
Fundamental Rights in India

There are seven main fundamental rights of India:

* right to equality * right to freedom which includes freedom of speech and expression , right to assemble peacefully, freedom to form associations or unions, right to move freely throughout the territory of India
, right to reside or settle in any part of the territory of India
, right to practice any profession or to carry on any occupation. * right to freedom of religion * right against exploitation * cultural and educational rights * right to constitutional remedies * right to vote(but above 18 years)

Newly implemented 7th Fundamental right in India

* right to education

It was added in the constitution after the 86th amendment in the year 2002 under article 21A. It is the most recently implemented fundamental right. RTE Act enabled this right in the year 2010.

A recent addition was made to the list of fundamental rights in India in 2017.

* right to privacy.


In American Constitutional Law , fundamental rights have special significance under the U.S. Constitution
U.S. Constitution
. Those rights enumerated in the U.S. Constitution
U.S. Constitution
are recognized as "fundamental" by the U.S. Supreme Court . According to the Supreme Court, enumerated rights that are incorporated are so fundamental that any law restricting such a right must both serve a compelling state purpose and be narrowly tailored to that compelling purpose .

The original interpretation of the United States Bill of Rights
United States Bill of Rights
was that only the Federal Government was bound by it. In 1835, the U.S. Supreme Court in Barron v Baltimore unanimously ruled that the Bill of Rights did not apply to the states. During post-Civil War Reconstruction , the 14th Amendment was adopted in 1868 to rectify this condition, and to specifically apply the whole of the Constitution to all U.S. states. In 1873, the Supreme Court essentially nullified the key language of the 14th Amendment that guaranteed all "privileges and immunities " to all U.S. persons, in a series of cases called the Slaughterhouse cases . This decision and others allowed post-emancipation racial discrimination to continue largely unabated.

Later Supreme Court justices found a way around these limitations without overturning the Slaughterhouse precedent: they created a concept called Selective Incorporation. Under this legal theory, the court used the remaining 14th Amendment protections for equal protection and due process to "incorporate" individual elements of the Bill of Rights against the states . "The test usually articulated for determining fundamentality under the Due Process Clause is that the putative right must be 'implicit in the concept of ordered liberty ', or 'deeply rooted in this Nation\'s history and tradition. '" Compare page 267 Lutz v. City of York, Pa., 899 F. 2d 255 - United States Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit, 1990.

This set in motion a continuous process under which each individual right under the Bill of Rights was incorporated, one b