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Freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion

Courtesy/By: Sarah Wilson | 2021-04-04 14:29     Views : 51

Article 25 says "all persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right to freely profess, practise, and propagate religion subject to public order, morality and health." This is subject to Subject to public order, health and morality. 

Article 25 basically confers two rights:-

  • Every person has freedom of conscience (moral sense or faith)- inner freedom to
    follow a particular religion.
  • Freedom to profess, practice and propagate (spread awareness) religion- exhibit the faith or outward form of Art. 25

Article 25(2) says, 

Nothing in this article shall affect the operation of any existing law or prevent the State from making any law—

  •  regulating or restricting any economic, financial, political or other secular activity which may be associated with religious practice;
  •  providing for social welfare and reform or the throwing open of Hindu religious institutions of a public character to all classes and sections of Hindu.

In the SR Bommai v. UOi (1994) case, it was held that Secularism is a part of the basic structure of the Constitution. then in the case of Acharya Jagadishwaranand Avadhuta v. Comm. of Police (1984) since Anand Marga was a sect and practised tandava dance procession in public places using human skulls, Trishul etc. the question arose whether it was to be permitted and whether if it was an essential religious practice. since the group subscribed to fundamental Hindu notions, it was held not to be an essential religious practise for followers of Anand Marga as they followed Hinduism. therefore, the court didn’t permit as it was against public health-and stated that only essential religious practices could be continued.

In the case of State of WB v. Ashutosh Lahiri – 1995. Slaughtering of cows during bakrid was brought into question, and the court held it was optional and not an obligation thus not an essential practice.

Article 26 states freedom to manage religious affairs,  For religious denominations and sects thereof:
(a) Establish and maintain institutions for religious and charitable purposes
(b) Manage own affairs in matters of religion
(c) Own and acquire movable and immovable property
(d) Administer such property in accordance with law

Restrictions under it are of public order, health and morality.

In the case of Brahmachari Sidheshwar v. State of WB (1995) also known as the Ramakrishna mission case, the question arose whether the followers of Ramakrishna Parahamsa can be seen as a separate religious sect or denomination. They had their own systems of belief, had an organization. The court observed that even though they had their own sect and were a religious denomination., they are not a minority.


This Article Does Not Intend To Hurt The Sentiments Of Any Individual Community, Sect, Or Religion Etcetera. This Article Is Based Purely On The Authors Personal Views And Opinions In The Exercise Of The Fundamental Right Guaranteed Under Article 19(1)(A) And Other Related Laws Being Force In India, For The Time Being. 

Courtesy/By: Sarah Wilson | 2021-04-04 14:29

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