Right against Exploitation (Article 23-24)

2 minute read

In India, the Right Against Exploitation is a constitutional provision under Articles 23 and 24. Article 23 prohibits forced labor and human trafficking, while Article 24 prohibits child labor in hazardous industries. These constitutional safeguards reflect India’s commitment to eradicating exploitative practices and ensuring the welfare of its citizens. In this blog, we shall explore all the possible dimensions related to Article 23 and Article 24.

Article 23: Prohibition of Traffic in Human Beings and Forced Labor

Article 23 of the Indian Constitution explicitly prohibits all forms of forced labor.We have tried to provide a comprehensive analysis of the same: 

  • Definition of Forced Labor: It defines “forced labor” as any work or service which is exacted from a person under the threat of a penalty and for which the person has not offered themselves voluntarily.
  • Exceptions: This prohibition does not apply to compulsory military service or any work required during a state of emergency.
  • Protection of Human Dignity: The main purpose of Article 23 is to protect the dignity of individuals by preventing exploitative labor practices.
  • Enforcement: Laws have been enacted, such as the Bonded Labor System (Abolition) Act 1976, to enforce this constitutional provision and eradicate bonded labor.
  • Punishments: Violation of Article 23 can lead to penalties and imprisonment as prescribed by law.
  • Human Trafficking: While Article 23 directly addresses forced labor, it also indirectly discourages human trafficking, as trafficking often involves forced labor.
  • International Commitments: India’s adherence to Article 23 is in line with its international obligations, including conventions of the International Labour Organization (ILO).

Thus, Article 23 is a crucial component of India’s constitutional framework, reflecting its commitment to protecting the rights and dignity of its citizens.

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Article 24: Prohibition of Employment of Children in Factories

Here are the key points regarding Article 24 of the Indian Constitution:

  • Prohibition of Child Labor: Article 24 of the Indian Constitution prohibits the employment of children under the age of 14 years in factories, mines, or any hazardous employment.
  • Protection of Children’s Rights: The primary objective of Article 24 is to protect the rights, health, and well-being of children by preventing their engagement in dangerous and harmful work.
  • Definition of Hazardous Employment: It specifically addresses hazardous employment, which can be harmful to the physical or mental health of children.
  • Exceptions: Article 24 allows children to be employed in non-hazardous family-based occupations or in the entertainment industry, subject to certain conditions.
  • Enforcement: Laws such as the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act have been enacted to enforce Article 24 and regulate child labor.
  • Penalties: Violation of Article 24 can lead to penalties and legal action against employers who engage children in prohibited forms of labor.

This provision underscores India’s commitment to ensuring the welfare, education, and overall development of its young population.

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Quiz Time


#1. What is the primary focus of Article 24 of the Indian Constitution?

#2. How does Article 23 define "forced labor"?

#3. What does Article 23 of the Indian Constitution prohibit?


We hope you learned everything about Right against Exploitation from this blog. If you want to read more facts like this, you can check out our general knowledge page. 

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