The most important freedom we cherish

It is our 74th Independence Day. What is the uppermost thought on this day? It is of freedom. What kind of freedom? It is freedom to speak, to think, to express an opinion, to assemble as a group (without arms), to roam the country, to earn a living. After we gained independence from our colonial rulers, we gave ourselves a constitution as a democratic republic. That constitution is our sacred document, which protects our freedoms. It enshrines them as fundamental rights. There are both positive and negative rights. The right to free speech and expression, to dissent, to move freely and reside anywhere in the country, are all examples of positive freedoms.

The negative freedoms are the right not to be harassed, coerced and illegally detained or incarcerated by the state, or the government. We also have the right to a clean environment, right to food, education and rural employment (NREGA). Soon we may have the right to internet interpreted as a basic right.

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