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The Six Clauses In Article 19

As before the making of the constitution our country was being ruled by foreigners for around 200 years and nothing like fundamental rights were part of our Indian law during that time. So while making of article 19 there were many things to discuss to give our citizens of India a real freedom.

The constitution of India provides six fundamental freedom rights under article 19. Article 19 is covered under part three of the constitution. All the six rights covered under article 19 deals with providing freedom to the citizens of India which can only be curtailed by order of state in case of emergency or on the basis of grounds mentioned in clause (2) of this article.
Earlier there were 7 freedom rights covered under article 19 but by the 44th amendment the Right to Hold and Dispose Property [1]earlier included in clause 1 sub clause f of article 19 was deleted and included in article 300A and now this right is no more a fundamental right it has now become an ordinary right.

There are six clauses in article 19 the first one{19(1)} deals with the important freedom rights and {19(2)-19(6)} deals with tests for restrictions imposed on freedom.
The six freedom rights covered under article 19(1) are:
  • 19(1)(a)
    Right to freedom of speech and expression
     
  • 19(1)(b)
    Right to assemble peacefully without arms
     
  • 19(1)(c)
    Freedom to form associations
     
  • 19(1)(d)
    Right to move freely in territory of India
     
  • 19(1)(e)
    Right to settle in territory of India
     
  • 19(1)(g)
    Freedom of trade and profession

Meaning
As per the bare language the article 19 is defined as follows:
Protection of certain rights regarding freedom of speech etc
  1. All citizens shall have the right
    1. to freedom of speech and expression;
    2. to assemble peaceably and without arms;
    3. to form associations or unions;
    4. to move freely throughout the territory of India;
    5. to reside and settle in any part of the territory of India; and
    6. omitted[1]
    7. to practise any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business
       
  2. Nothing in sub clause (a) of clause ( 1 ) shall affect the operation of any existing law, or prevent the State from making any law, in so far as such law imposes reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub clause in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency or morality or in relation to contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence.
     
  3. Nothing in sub clause (b) of the said clause shall affect the operation of any existing law in so far as it imposes, or prevent the State from making any law imposing, in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India or public order, reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub clause
     
  4. Nothing in sub clause (c) of the said clause shall affect the operation of any existing law in so far as it imposes, or prevent the State from making any law imposing, in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India or public order or morality, reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub clause
     
  5. Nothing in sub clauses (d) and (e) [2]of the said clause shall affect the operation of any existing law in so far as it imposes, or prevent the State from making any law imposing, reasonable restrictions on the exercise of any of the rights conferred by the said sub clauses either in the interests of the general public or for the protection of the interests of any Scheduled Tribe
     
  6. Nothing in sub clause (g) of the said clause shall affect the operation of any existing law in so far as it imposes, or prevent the State from making any law imposing, in the interests of the general public, reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub clause, and, in particular, nothing in the said sub clause shall affect the operation of any existing law in so far as it relates to, or prevent the State from making any law relating to:
    1. The professional or technical qualifications necessary for practising any profession or carrying on any occupation, trade or business, or
    2. The carrying on by the State, or by a corporation owned or controlled by the State, of any trade, business, industry or service, whether to the exclusion, complete or partial, of citizens or otherwise
So now let's discuss each freedom given under clause 19(1) of article 19 in detail with clauses 19(2)-19(6)

Freedom Of Speech And Expression

19(1)(a)
It is held to be basic and indivisible right it is a cherished and secret right it gives citizens freedom to propagate views in any form whether words, gestures, picture, art, newspaper etc. It is essential to the rule of law and liberty of citizens it the foundation of a democratic society.

This freedom is given to the citizens to ensure that they participate in the public activities. They form an opinion and have a word to say in public activities. This is why it is an important aspect of a democracy. A person can express his views on any issue and through any medium which he wishes. No country in world guarantees freedom of speech in absolute terms.

The US constitution in its 1st Amendment stated:
Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech or of the press. As this right isnot absolute so it allows Government to frame laws to impose reasonable restrictions in the interest of sovereignty and integrity of India, security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states, public order, decency and morality and contempt of court, defamation and incitement to an offence.

19(1)(a) along with restriction as mentioned in 19(2)
As from the introduction we came to know that sub clause (a) of article 19(1) deals with freedom of speech and expression and 19(2) provides a reasonable restriction to this right which are mentioned as follows:
  1. Interests of sovereignty and integrity of India. (Added by 16th Amendment, 1963)
  2. Security of the state;
  3. Friendly relations with foreign states; (Added by 1st Amendment, 1951)
  4. Public order; (Added by 1st Amendment, 1951)
  5. Decency or morality;
  6. Contempt of court;
  7. Defamation;
  8. Incitement to an offence;

Article 19(1)(a) also includes Right To Be Silent
Article 19(1)(a) contains Freedom of Speech and expression so , within the scope of it also contains Right to Silence. The famous case (national anthem case) relating to this right is mentioned below:
Bijoe Emmanuel v. State of Kerala (National Anthem Case) (1986)[4]
In this case, the Supreme Court held that the three students were not guilty of disrespect to the National Anthem just because they refused to sing it. Moreover, they did stand in respect whenever the National Anthem was being sung.

Freedom Of Press Under Freedom Of Speech And Expression

It states that no administrative or statutory control should be implemented on propagation of information, knowledge, ideas, and thoughts.

It is settled law that the right to freedom of speech and expression includes the liberty of the press. Press is supposed to guard public interest by bringing to fore the misdeeds, failings and lapses of the government and other bodies exercising governing power rightly, therefore, it has been described as the Fourth Estate

The Press has the same rights as those of an individual it cannot claim better rights. The freedom of press is not confined to newspapers and periodicals. It includes pamphlets, circulars, and every sort of information which affords a vehicle of information and opinion.

Some important case laws relating to above are mentioned below:
Brij Bhushan and Anr. v. State of Delhi (1950)[5]
In this case, Supreme Court highlighted that restriction on the liberty of the press unless it creates a danger to the State is the restriction on the freedom of speech and expression as provided under Article 19 (1) (a) of the Indian Constitution. This decision also confirms the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, 1948 standards of freedom of opinion and expression.

Romesh Thapper v. State of Madras (1950)[6]
The Court, while ruling on the validity of the impugned order that banned the entry and circulation of the weekly magazine into certain parts of Madras, held that the freedom of speech and expression includes freedom of propagation of ideas that can only be ensured by circulation.

Sakal papers v. Union of India (1961)[7]
The right to freedom of speech and expression which is an integral part of our democratic society includes the freedom of the press, freedom of circulation, freedom of publication, and dissemination of one's views and opinions. Hence the Government should not pass any acts that create conflicts among the fundamental rights of the citizens.

Are Commercial Advertisement part of freedom of speech?
Hamdard Dawakhana v Union of India (1960)[8]
The validity of the Drug and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act, which put restrictions on advertisement of drugs in certain cases and prohibited advertisements of drugs having magic qualities for curing diseases was challenged on the ground that the restriction on advertisement abridged the freedom. The Supreme Court held that an advertisement is no doubt a form of speech but every advertisement was held to be dealing with commerce or trade and not for propagating ideas.

Tata Press v. MTNL (1995) [9]
The Supreme Court ruled that the MTNL has no right to hold back Tata Press Ltd from publishing Tata Yellow Pages

Right to be informed
Information to citizens is very important no democratic government can survive without it as it helps in promoting democracy. It was enacted in 2002. A person is appointed in every government institute to provide information to the citizens at a very nominal rate. but sensitive information is not disclosed.

Right against sound pollution
This right relates to sound pollution problems.basically it deals with use of loudspeakers at gurdwaras mosques etc. Calcutta high Court held that freedom of speech and expression doesn't mean to disturb other people of locality.

Moulana Mufti Syed Md.Noorur Rehman Barkati v/s State of W.B[10]
It was held that Azan is an essential part of Islam; however the use of loudspeakers is not an essential part of Azan itself.

Right To Assemble Peacefully Without Arms

19(1) (b)
The assembly must be non-violent and must not cause any breach of public peace. If the assembly is disorderly or riotous, then it is not protected under Article 19 (1) (b) and reasonable restrictions can be imposed under clause (3) of Article 19 in the Interests of sovereignty and Integrity of India or public order.

Assembly freedom gives people the right to have public meetings, and to carry out processions. Article 19(1)(b)] allows for the right of people to meet one another. To access this right the people's assembly must be a) peaceful, and b) arms-free. In the interests of a) public order, and b) India's sovereignty and integrity, the State may further impose reasonable restrictions. Also, if magistrate feels that there is a threat to public order or peace that he can impose restrictions on the freedom of assembly of people under Section 144 of Cr.P.C.

19(1)(b) along with restriction as mentioned in 19(3)
As we know that article 19(1)(b) deals with FREEDOM OF ASSEMBLY and 19(3) lays down reasonable restrictions to it which are as follows
Grounds for Reasonable restriction
  1. Public order
  2. Maintenance of sovereignty and integrity of India.
The Assembly under 19(1) (b) should be peaceful and without arms. Section 141 of IPC defines what an unlawful assembly is.

Amit Sahni v. Commissioner of Police Oct. 2020 SC[11]
The Supreme Court of India held that public protests and demonstrations expressing dissent must only be organized in designated places. The Court allowed an appeal brought by advocate Amit Sahni for the removal of a protest organized at Shaheen Bagh, a Dehli neighborhood, against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens.

The appellant argued that the protest blocked the public way and caused grave inconvenience to commuters. Accepting this contention, the Court ruled that despite the existence of the right to peaceful protest against legislation, public ways and public spaces cannot be occupied indefinitely. It held that the rights to freedom of expression and protest under Article 19 of the Constitution are subject to reasonable restrictions pertaining to the sovereignty and integrity of India, public order and to the regulation by the concerned police authorities.

Freedom To Form Associations

19(1)(c)
The right to form association includes the right to form companies, societies, partnerships, trade union and political parties. The freedom to form association implies also the freedom to form or not to form, to join or not to join, an association or union.

Article 19(1)(c) confers the freedom to form associations or unions on the people. Article 19(1)(c) provides the right not only to join an association but also to proceed with the association as such. Free association also means the right to form or not form, join or not join an organization or union.

In the interests of a) public order, b) morality, and c) India's sovereignty and integrity, the State can impose reasonable restrictions on freedom of association or union.

19(1)(c) along with restriction as mentioned in 19(4)
Grounds for Reasonable restriction:
  1. Interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India
  2. Public order
  3. Morality
19(1)(c) guarantees freedom to form associations and co-operative societies.
The right to form association also includes right to not be part of an association
The part with co operative societies was added by the 97th amendment together with PART IX-B of constitution that talks about co-operative societies.

Damyanti v. UOI 1971[12]
The Supreme Court held that The right to form an association, the Court said:
Necessarily 'implies that the person forming the association has also the right to continue to be associated with only those whom they voluntarily admit in the association. Any law by which members are introduced in the voluntary association without any option being given to the members to keep them out, or any law which takes away the membership of those who have voluntarily joined it, will be a law violating the right to form an association

Right To Move Freely In Territory Of India 19(1) (D) &
Right To Settle In Territory Of India19 (1)(E)

Article 19(1)(d) of the Indian Constitution entitles every citizen to move freely throughout the territory of the country. This right is protected against only state action and not private individuals. Moreover, it is available only to the citizens and to shareholders of a company but not to foreigners or legal persons like companies or corporations, etc.

Article 19(1)(d) guarantees freedom of movement in the territory of India; while appropriate limitations may be placed on that right in the interest of:
  1. the general public, or b) to protect the interests of any Scheduled Tribe. Of example, movement and travel restrictions can be enforced to monitor epidemics or to protect the environment or biodiversity, or to preserve tribal culture such as Jarawas in Andaman. Likewise, restrictions can be imposed by a District Magistrate or Police Commissioner order to exclude a person from a given area (Tadipar) for a temporary duration of up to three months.
According to Article 19(1 )(e) every citizen of India has the right "to reside and settle in any part of the territory of India." However, under clause (5) of Article 19 reasonable restriction may be imposed on this right by law in the interest of the general public or for the protection of the interest of any Scheduled Tribe.

[Art. 19(1)(e)] grants people the freedom to live (temporary residence) and settle anywhere in the Indian Territory. The freedom of movement and the freedom to reside and settle are mutually complementary. Their purpose is to remove barriers inside India. They uphold India's national unity and dignity. The right is subject to fair restrictions from abuse and coercion by the State for the benefit of the:
  1. general public, or
  2. for the security of the scheduled tribes
Of the same reasons listed above, the freedom to travel and live or settle in north-eastern states of India, Uttarakhand etc. has been limited.

19(1)(d&e) along with restriction as mentioned in 19(5)
As we know that article 19(1)(d) deals with Right To Move Freely In Territory Of India and 19(1)(e) Right To Settle In Territory Of India 19(5) lays down reasonable restrictions to it which are as follows:

Grounds for Reasonable restriction:
  1. Interests of the general public
  2. For the protection of the interests of any scheduled tribe

Freedom To Own Property: Article 300a

44th Amendment, 1988-19(1)(f) And Article 31 (Right to Property) removed from constitution and Article 300A-Right to property added.

Article 300A states that persons not to be deprived of property save by authority of law. No person shall be deprived of his property save by authority of law.
After this Right to property is a constitutional right but not a fundamental right.

Kharak Singh V. State of UP (1963)[13]
The Supreme Court held that the right to move freely throughout the territory of India means the right of locomotion which connotes the right to move wherever one likes, and however one likes

In U.P. Avas Evam Vikas Parishad v. Friends Co-op. Housing Society Ltd.,[14]
The Supreme Court held that the right to residence assured in Articles 19(1)(e) and right to life under Article 21 included the right to shelter and to construct houses for that purpose, subject however, to the building rules.

Freedom Of Trade And Profession

19(1) (g)
Constitution has granted this fundamental right under Art 19(1)(g), for the prosperity and well being of everyone in the society. The State ensures that no individual residing within the territorial boundaries of the country is deprived of this right and if at all he is, it will take the requisite measures to avail him of an appropriate remedy and make sure that justice is delivered. Every citizen should utilize this right to the best of his capabilities and for his moral as well as economic progress.

[Art. 19(1)(g)) grants a person the freedom to choose the source of his or her choice of living. The right covers the right not to choose an undertaking or the right to close a company. The second right comes with other provisions such as payment of wages for jobs, pension, etc. The right of the person to carry on a career is fundamental to a man's life and the state does not place any specific restriction on it, except for the general public's benefit. There is of course no right to carry on a dangerous or immoral business

19(1)(g) along with restriction as mentioned in 19(6)
As we know that article 19(1)(g) deals with FREEDOM OF TRADE AND PROFESSION and 19(6) lays down reasonable restrictions to it which are as follows:
Grounds for Reasonable restriction:
  1. In the interests of the general public.
  2. State prescribed qualifications for carrying on any profession or technical occupation.
  3. State-run trade, business, industry, or service that excludes the participation of citizens or others either completely or partially.

Right to carry on business includes right to close the business? NO
Excel Wear v. Union of India (1979)[15]
It was held that the right of the businessmen to close down their business (and in particular the members' right of voluntary winding up) has to be protected. The Apex Court in Excel Wear case by holding the impugned provisions as unconstitutional has rightly prevented the businessmen from being forced to implore to the government for permission to close down their business which could have been easily denied by the government arbitrarily and without any reason.

Education covered under Article 19(1)(g)?
Unni Krishnan v. State of A.P.(1993)[16]
The Supreme Court held that the right to basic education is implied by the fundamental right to life (Article 21) when read in conjunction with the directive principle on education (Article 41). The Court held that the parameters of the right must be understood in the context of the Directive Principles of State Policy, including Article 45 which provides that the state is to endeavour to provide, within a period of ten years from the commencement of the Constitution, for free and compulsory education for all children under the age of 14The Court ruled that there is no fundamental right to education for a professional degree that flows from Article 21.

State Lotteries are not Trade or business but gambling
B.R. Enterprises v. State of U.P. (1999)[17]
The Supreme Court of India in BR Enterprises v. State of UP has held that a lottery is a game of chance and is not a business or trade; rather, it is in the nature of res extra commercium. The Supreme Court also held, while interpreting Section 5 of the Lotteries Act 1998, that a state could not exclude other states from its own lottery.
 
Conclusion
The Right to Freedom is one of the most important Fundamental Rights under the Constitution of India. Without freedom, there can't be any democratic setup. People will not be able to grow and develop if they do not have the freedom to do anything. At the same time, providing people with absolute freedom could be very dangerous. It is important to put restrictions on freedom so that people don't misuse their rights and co-exist with others peacefully.

The State thus acts as a source of limiting the freedom of individuals. Our Constitution has very nicely mentioned the freedoms and the grounds on which they can be limited. This balance of power is necessary. Thus, the Article 19 of our Constitution is one of the most important article which ensures the welfare of the citizens of our country. It enables them to form opinions and choices and work accordingly to their will. But through reasonable restrictions it also ensures that while one is exercising his right he doesn't infringe the right of any other person or create thread to the society.

End-Notes:
  1. This was deleted by 44th amendment
  2. This clause is deleted and now included in article 300A
  3. Subs. by the constitution act 1951
  4. 1987 AIR 748
  5. 1950 AIR 129
  6. 1950 AIR 124
  7. A.I.R. 1962 S.C. 305
  8. Civil Writ Petition No. 258-D of 1957
  9. 5 SCC 139
  10. W.P. 8146(W) of 1997
  11. Civil Appeal No. 3282 Of 2020
  12. AIR 1971 SC 966
  13. 1963 AIR 1295
  14. AIR 1996 SC 114
  15. 1979 AIR 25
  16. Writ Petition (Civil) No. 607 of 1992
  17. Appeal (civil) 2747 of 1999

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