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Fundamental rights and Directive Principles - difference

Fundamental Rights are human rights conferred on the citizens of India. DPSP are ideals which are meant to be kept in mind by the State when it formulates policies and enacts laws. The difference between Fundamental Rights vs Directive Principles of State can give basic understanding of the topic.

Fundamental Rights

1. Part-III, containing articles from 12 to 35 deal with Fundamental Rights.

2. The Fundamental Rights can be enforceable by a court against the State.

3. These are primarily aim at assuring political freedom to the citizens by protecting them against the excessive State action.

4. The Fundamental Rights are given a pride of place by the Constitution makers.

5. The chapter of Fundamental Rights is sacrosanct and not liable to be abridged by legislative or executive act or orders, except to the extent provided in appropriate Article in Part III.

Directive Principles of State Policy

1. Part –IV, containing Articles from 36 to 50, deal with Directive Principle of State Policy.

2. The Directive Principles of State Policy can not be enforceable by any Court.

3. These are aimed at securing welfare, social and economic freedoms by appropriate State action.

4. The Directive Principles are given a place of permanence by the Constitution makers.

5. The Directive Principles of State policies have to confirm and to run as subsidiary to the Chapter of Fundamental Rights.


  1. Fundamental rights are negative as they prohibit the state from doing certain things. Directive principles are positive as they requires the state to do certain things

  2. Fundamental rights are justifiable, that is they are legally enforceable by the courts in the case of their violation. While directive principles are non justifiable i.e. they are not enforceable by the courts for their violation.

  3. Fundamental rights aim at establishing political democracy in the country but directive principles aim at establishing social and economic democracy in the country.

  4. Fundamental rights have legal sanctions, means can be enforced by court, but in the case of directive principles , have, legal and political sanctions.

  5. Fundamental rights want to promote the welfare of the individual so they are personal and individualistic but in the case of directive principles they promote the welfare of the community, so they are more socialistic and for the benefits of the society at large.

  6. Fundamental rights require any legislation for their implementation, they are automatically enforced. Directive principles need specific legislation for their implementation and cannot be automatically enforced.

  7. Violation of fundamental rights are unconstitutional and invalid but not in the case of directive principles. Directive principles can only be directional.

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