Article 14 of the Indian constitution: Equality before Law

Article 14 of the Indian constitution says that: State shall not deny any individual Equality Before Law and Equal Protection of Law within the territory of India.

Article 14 of Indian constitution seeks to promote the principles of Equality before law and equal protection of law
Article 14 of the Indian constitution,
Source: Dailynews.ik

Article 14 of the Indian Constitution aims to promote the principle of Right to Equality. It is one of the core principles of the Rule of Law. In any democratic society, it is quite obvious that all the individuals should be treated equally by state irrespective of their social, economic and political status.

If any state fails to provide equal treatment to all the citizens then it will lay the foundation of division within the society. It is also important for national integration.

Equality Before Law :

All the individuals will be treated equally irrespective of their social and economic status i.e. Law will be applied equally for all citizens. No discrimination will be done. It is a negative concept in the sense that if the law applied equally for all irrespective of the social and economic conditions the weaker section of the society will be at a disadvantage.

Example: If tax is imposed on every individual at a rate of 20% irrespective of their income then lower income groups will be at a disadvantage.

Equal Protection of Law :

It is a more positive concept, implying the right to equality of treatment in equal circumstances. This concept has been borrowed from the USA. It encompasses social and economic justice. It enables classification for the purpose of the legislation. But such classification should not be arbitrary. Possible classifications:

1. On the basis of geographical location. Example a person living in a hilly area can be given more funds for the welfare scheme.

2. On the basis of difference in time

3. The classification may be based on the difference in the nature of trade, calling or occupations.

4. Based on education: Person having certain qualifications can only perform some function. Example a Person having MBBS Degree can only prescribe medicine.

5. An offense relating to women 

Such classification should be reasonable and fair.

Examples:

Liquor consumption by Military Vs Citizen and Foreigner Vs Indian Citizens.

Selection by Public Service Commission based on merit.

So this is one of the Fundamental Rights given to the citizen of India to promote the principles of Rule of Law. All the persons will be treated equally irrespective of their social and political status.

What is article 14 of Indian constitution?

Article 14 of the Indian constitution deals with the Right to Equality. It seeks to promote the Rule of Law. As per this law, all the citizens will be treated equally irrespective of social, economic and political status in society.

article 14 and CAB/CAA?

There is a relation between article 14 and CAB/CAA. As the CAA seeks to discriminate against the citizens on the basis of religion. Which is against the principle of Right to Equality.

Article 14 does not forbit classification?

Article 14 of the Indian constitution does not prevent classification. But it should be reasonable. As per the provision of Equal Treatment of Law, citizens can be treated differently for affirmative action.