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Universal Declaration Of Human Rights And Its Crises

Beginning with the phrase "all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights," the universal Declaration of human rights (UDHR) proclaims its purpose of establishing global human rights from the outset. As a common standard of achievement for all signatory nations, The UDHR constitutes an essential cornerstone in the modern history of human rights by drawing upon ancient to contemporary philosophies responses to the heinous crimes of World War II, and various visions for future human rights standards.

Introduction
Human rights are a set of principles concerned with equality and fairness. They recognize our freedom to make choices about our lives and to develop our potential as human beings. They are about living a life free from fear, harassment or discrimination. Human rights can broadly be defined as a number of basic rights that people from around the world have agreed are essential.

These include the right to life, the right to a fair trial, freedom from torture and other cruel and inhuman treatment, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and the rights to health, education and an adequate standard of living. These human rights are the same for all people everywhere – men and women, young and old, rich and poor, regardless of our background, where we live, what we think or what we believe. This is what makes human rights 'universal'.

History
The United Nations was founded by 51 countries in October 1945, two months after World War II ended. Two world wars, the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and a global refugee crisis had led to fears of a destructive World War II. The UN was founded to avoid such a disaster, as well as to address human rights. Out of all the people who wanted such notions to become a reality, it was Eleanor Roosevelt – the wife of the late United States President Franklin Delano Roosevelt – who would play a crucial role in the formulation of the Universal Human Rights Declaration.

The UDHR is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in Paris on 10 Dec 1948 as a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations. It sets out, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected and it has been translated into over 500 languages.

Originally, people had rights only because of their membership in a group, such as a family. Then, in 539 BC, Cyrus the Great, after conquering the city of Babylon, did something totally unexpected-he freed all slaves to return home. Moreover, he declared people should choose their own religion. The Cyrus Cylinder, a clay tablet sets out, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected and it has been translated into over 500 languages.

Originally, people had rights only because of their membership in a group, such as a family. Then, in 539 BC, Cyrus the Great, after conquering the city of Babylon, did something totally unexpected-he freed all slaves to return home. Moreover, he declared people should choose their own religion. The Cyrus Cylinder, a clay tablet containing his statements, is the first human rights declaration in history. The idea of human rights spread quickly to India, Greece and eventually Rome.

What is UDHR

The universal Declaration of human rights (UDHR) is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 (General Assembly Resolution 217A) as common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations. It sets out, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected and it has been translated into over 500 languages. 48 members voted in favor out of 58 members.

For example: India, China, Pakistan, united states, France.

In Keshava Nanda Bharti V. State of Kerala (AIR 1973)
Supreme Court observed that UDHR not be legally binding instrument but if it shows how Indie winder stood the nature of Human Rights at the time the Constitution was adopted.

Important provisions of UDHR

There is most important provision of universal declaration of human rights are:
  1. Free and equal (Article 1):
    All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reasons and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brother hood.
  2. Freedom of discrimination (Article 2):
    Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedom set forth in this declaration of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, Religion, political or other opinion etc.
  3. Right to life (Article 3):
    everyone has the right to life liberty and security of a person.
  4. Freedom from slavery (Article 4):
    No one shall be held in the slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.
  5. Freedom from torture (Article 7):
    No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading Treatment or punishment.
  6. Right to recognition as a person before the law (Article 6):
    You have a right to be accepted everywhere as a person according to law.
  7. Right to equality before the law (Article 7):
    You have a right to be protected and treated equally by the e law without discrimination of any kind.
  8. Right to remedy by capable judges. (Article 8):
    If your legal rights are violated, you have the right to fair and cable judges to uphold your rights.
  9. Freedom from arbitrary arrest and exit (Article 9):
    Nobody has the right to arrest you, put you in prison or to force you out of your country without good reasons
  10. Presumption of innocence (Article 11):
    Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trail at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defense.
  11. Right to privacy (Article 12):
    No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family home or correspondence nor to attacks upon his honor and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.
  12. Right to own property (Article 17):
    Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.
     

Other important provision is:
33,34,35,36, 41,42,44,48,51,61,62,68,92-96,97-101,103 105,111.

Global crises of UDHR

The UDHR has been subject to criticisms due to its supposed ethnocentrism and rhetoric, reflecting strong western influences
  1. Against the principle of state sovereignty: States are free all type of restrictions
    Declaration states that 'all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood' Concepts such as 'consciousness', 'dignity', 'reason' has been often interpreted by European scholars as deriving from western philosophy. One could even consider the term 'brotherhood' as one which relates back to the concept of égalité of the French revolution.
     
  2. Rights are non-justiciable:
    No individual cannot go to court for enforcement of their rights.
     
  3. No fixation of time limit for proper implementations of rights:
    Many states have violated and violating these rights.
     
  4. Not better than moral principle:
    Accept or not to accept is up to the sweet whish of the state.
     
  5. Wide gap between theory and practice:
    Inhuman treatment of masses.
     
  6. No provision of duties:
    Rights have no importance without duties.

Significance Of The Universal Declaration Of Human Rights:

  • The UDHR is widely regarded as a ground-breaking document that provides a comprehensive and universal set of principles in a secular, apolitical document that is beyond cultural, religious and political ideologies The Declaration was the first instrument of international law to use the phrase "rule of law", thereby establishing the principle that all members of all societies are equally bound by the law regardless of the jurisdiction or political system.
     
  • In International law, a declaration is different from a treaty in the sense that it generally states aspiration or understanding among the parties, rather than binding obligations. For this reason, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a fundamental constitutive document of the United Nations and, by extension, all 193 parties of the UN Charter.

Conclusion
The drafters of the Declaration committed a major historical and legal mistake by tying the principles and rules of the Declaration to Hitler's devilish regime. Scholars that followed this analysis have equally erred. The D declaration was intended to protect individuals, but it does not deal with minorities or any kind of human collectivity that suffers under dictatorships or cruel regimes-where the real suffering of human beings is concentrated. Instead, the Declaration is nothing more than a mere declaration. It has no force of law and was a wasted effort. Written By: Naina

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