Introduction to article 21

Article 21 of the constitution deals with the right to life in which several basic rights has been provided to the every citizen of the country. The rights are on the basis of basic needs of a person which are required to live life with dignity.  So article 21 is defined as, no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to a procedure established by law. Earlier, the supreme court took the view that “procedure established by law” in article 21 means procedure prescribed by law as enacted by the state and rejected to equate it with the American “due process of law”. Time to time this article 21 is interpreted by the courts according to the cases that come and addition of new rights in this article take place which is interpreted as basic right to life by the courts.

Breastfeeding right

So recently, Karnataka high court said that breast feeding an inalienable right of lactating mother. And addition of this new article is also took place in article 21.

Breastfeeding mother and the suckling child are the concurrent rights protected under right to life guaranteed under the fundamental rights, mentioned in the Indian constitution, the court noted. Karnataka high court held that breastfeeding is an inalienable right of a lactating mother under the fundamental rights guaranteed by the constitution. the judgement is given by the single bench of justice Krishna S dixit in the favour of  lactating mother and the suckling child in case Husna banu v. state of Karnataka.

Husna Banu v. state of karnataka

The facts of case are, Husna Banu moved to the court seeking custody of her child, who was stolen from a maternity hospital in bengaluru and sold to a childless women anupma desai from the district headquarters town of koppal. And the other woman take care of this child for 1 year.

The court also observed that the right of the suckling infant for being breastfed should be assimilated with the mother’s right. Because if we separate the child from his lactating mother then it will be violation of right to life of the child. Stressing that such incident should not be happen in a civilised society, the bench  observed, “it is unfortunate that this pretty child for no fault remained without breastfed, its lactating mother had no access to it till now. In a civilised society such a things should never happen.

The foster mother had argued the court to retain the child as she took care of the toddler for more than one year. But the court said that, your work is appreciable of taking care of that child and it is setting a good example in the nation, but look at the incidents how you got that child, if you got any orphan child or if child was given to you by the lactating mother willfully then it would be totally justified. But the incident which took place is totally against the civilised society and the court termed Desai’s contention as abhorrent to the nation of motherhood. Children are not chattel for being apportioned between their genetic mother and a stranger on the basis of their numerical abundance, “justice dixit maintained. The biological mother’s statement that the foster mother can see the child whenever her heart desires.

So this new right is added in the article 21 of the constitution by the Karnataka high court.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

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We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge

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