New Delhi: Advocate Durga Dutt had filed a petition in the Supreme Court last year seeking enforcement of the Fundamental Duties under Article 4 of the Constitution.
It states: Non-observance of fundamental duties directly affects the fundamental rights enshrined in the Articles of the Constitution. Apart from a few laws there is no uniform policy in the enforcement of fundamental obligations.
It is time to encourage every citizen in the country to do their duty to protect the country’s sovereignty, unity and natural environment. Regulations should be made to make people aware about this. A high-level committee headed by a retired Chief Justice of the Supreme Court should be constituted to examine the laws related to the implementation of fundamental duties, it said.
When this petition came up for hearing in April last year, the then Attorney General KK Venugopal objected. “The Ministry of Law and Justice has done a lot of work to create awareness about fundamental duties. Before filing such petitions the petitioner should have examined certain facts. He argued that this petition is not suitable for trial.
The Supreme Court had sent a notice asking whether the central government had taken any steps to implement the recommendations made in the Justice JS Verma Committee report on the implementation of fundamental duties. The state governments were also ordered to respond regarding the implementation of basic duties.
The case came up for hearing again the day before yesterday in a session comprising Justices SK Kaul, Manoj Mishra and Aravind Kumar. Advocate Ranjit Singh, who appeared on behalf of the petitioner, argued that some states have not yet filed their reply. Some of the states that have filed their reply have also filed late,” he said.
At that time, the judges said, “Notices should be sent to the departmental secretaries of the states who have not filed a reply petition. They will appear in court via video during the next hearing. The states which do not file their reply by the specified date and the states which file their reply late will have to pay a penalty of Rs.25,000 as mentioned in the last order. The Ministry of Law and Justice is also being given a last chance to file a reply,” they ordered.
To that, Additional Solicitor General Balbir Singh, Central Government’s reply petition has now been filed. Petitioners rely on the constitutions of Japan, China and Russia to enforce fundamental obligations. “We have never seen a person relying on the Chinese Constitution in 32 petitions,” he said. The next hearing on this petition will be held on March 28.