RIGHT AND DUTIES GO TOGETHER
“The rights and duties are wedded to each other. The biggest rights in the world are achieved through service and sacrifice.”
Today’s world is another great mire in the ominous darkness of which one only hears confused protestations and cries of alarm to ensure each one’s rights. Old and young, high and low, men and women all clamour for their rights unmindful of any genuine reason for the same. Factory workers demands to be liberated from the oppression of the authority. Old men complain that no right is guaranteed to them and that they are being discarded as an invalid gentry. So much so that school children are no longer prepared to tolerate parental authority and the tyranny of the elders.
Claiming for one’s rights may be an expression of increased awareness of one’s responsibility towards the society but, the expression does not acquire fully fledged meaning unless demand for rights is duly supplemented by an equal response to one’s duty. An individual who is careful in fully exploiting his rights is naturally inclined towards performing his job well. For, rights arise from one’s sincere discharge of duties. And it is this balancing of rights and duties that establish relationship between man and the society. Moreover the deal between the individual and society is not one-way traffic.
In consonance with the truth of the above statement, the Russian Constitution aptly declares that the state gives to each according to his needs and expects from each according to his capacity. The concept of perestroika only strengthens this reality. In fact it is the individual’s capacity to give that determines his rights. A farmer claims his rights as much as a professor. However degree and the nature of their rights vary. But the farmer’s job is not to be treated with condemnation. He feeds the entire world. On the other hand, a teacher’s job is far more superior in that he provides food for the mind. It is obviously that their demands vary considerably. In order to get the best out of life, one has to put ones best into it. What we put into life is our duty and what we obtain out of it is our right. Our capacity to give should be the basis of our right.
We are tipping off the balance once we become unduly conscious of our rights or even of our duties. An undue awareness of our rights without j a proportionate discharge of duties is liable to encroach upon others rights. And it is sincere discharge of duties that provides a healthy check on our rights.
Democracy is a government by consent. In an election, a candidate sees that his rights to stand for election are protected. However if he shirks | from his responsibility after being elected, the much canvassed right is curtailed by the same person. In fact, the very basis of democracy lies in the fact each citizen should try to do what he is capable of doing without waiting for others to perform the same work.
Dr. S. Radhakrishnan once said “each individual in civilized society should only think of what he is capable of doing for his country and not what he can get out it.” And the more one is capable of giving without considering what he can get in terms, gets the maximum.
“Science has given us knowledge but not wisdom, it has given us contort but not happiness” said Bertrand Russell liberalism has only made us conscious of our rights; it has foiled to render happiness. Our ancestors were much happier than us since they emphasized on duties. Now there has been a shifting of emphasis from duties to rights, which has only afforded to give monetary pleasure but not happiness. Liberty without proper execution of duties means license. The only price of freedom is blood.
The aim of every individual is to lead a balanced life. To that end, one should see that the balance of rights and duties is not ripped at one position. To fulfill a rightful demand for one’s rights should be supplemented by wise transaction of duties. It is rightly said “Give to the world the best you have and the best will came to you.” Unfortunately one of the reasons for sliding down on economic social and political fields is our too much insistence on rights only. Do the trade unions which give a call for strike on a minor issue in the so called interest of its members even care to tell their constituents to their duty towards public in general and nation in particular?
In fact, the advent of trade unionism without duties is the bane of our public life. Think of the Japanese labours that were in factories working with black badges, even though on strike. They work to their country a dedicated service so that national product does not suffer.