Q. 1. Explain the term ‘Justice’.
Define the term ‘Justice’. Discuss the fundamental postulates of Justice.
Ans. ‘Justice’ is of utmost importance in Political Science. Its existence is as ancient as the human society. Several scholars have defined justice differently in every age.
Meaning and definitions of Justice: The word ‘Justice’ has been derived from Latin word ‘Jus’ which means a bond or tie. It means, Justice is that system wherein all the individuals are related to each other. In modern terms of political science, Justice stands for that state of social life in which personal rights are combined with social welfare. Main definitions of justice are mentioned below:
1. To quote J.S. Mill, “Justice is the name for certain classes of moral values, which concern the essentials of human well-being more clearly and are, therefore, of more absolute obligations, than any other rules for the guidance of life.”
2. According to Barker, “Justice is an order of persons and an order of the principles regulating the distribution of rights to persons, which is measured and determined by a final and ultimate value.”
3. According to Salmond, “Justice means to give every individual his due share.”
4. Merriam opines, “Justice consists in a system of understandings and procedures through which is accorded what is agreed upon as fair.”
Merriam’s definition highlights the following four aspects:
(i) Justice is concerned with moral values and conceptions of society.
(ii) Justice is related to procedures also. Law and courts are set to get justice.
(iii) The aim of justice is to arrange rights and conveniences for people.
(iv) Different classes of society at a time can have different conceptions of rights and conveniences.
On the basis of the above mentioned definitions, we can conclude that justice is that state in which a man can lead a well-set and disciplined life.
Fundamental Postulates of Justice
Arnold Brecht has described the following Fundamental Postulates of justice:
1. Truth: Truth is the basic postulate of justice. Truth means exact presentation of an incident. Truthfulness of the facts stated in courts is of primary importance.
2. Generality of the systems of value: It means that the same conception of justice should be applied to every matter.
3. Equality before law: All the citizens should be equal before law. The citizens should not be discriminated in the name of caste, colour, creed and sex.
4. Freedom: Justice and freedom are co-related. The liberals are of the view that man can get justice only in a free atmosphere. Freedom should be restricted for the welfare of society and the nation.
5. Respect for the essentials of nature: It is against the spirit of justice to compel a man to do some work, which is beyond his capacity naturally. For example, to expect an old and ill man to put in physical labour is purely injustice.
These above mentioned five fundamental postulates are necessary to be followed to get justice at the local, national and international level.
Q. 2. What are the socio-economic dimensions of Justice? Explain.
What do you understand by the phrase, ‘Justice, Social and Economic’? Indicate five of its major implications.
Ans. Two forms of Justice — Moral and Legal — are prevalent traditionally. However, these days justice has various aspects — legal, political, social and economic. The importance of social and economic justice is increasing day-by-day and both are, interconnected. Social and economic justice is the very basis of present welfare states.
Social justice (D.B. 1983): Social justice is extremely popular in modern age. Innumerable people, all over the world, have adopted socialism and marxism only because of social justice. Once Pandit Nehru expressed his view that Marxism is extremely popular not because of its scientific principle but for its readiness for social justice.
According to Gajendra Gadker: “Social justice means the abolition of all social inequalities and provision of equal opportunities to all the individuals living in society.” Allen says, “Social justice means the removal of inequalities and discrimination amongst the members of the society.” Thus, social justice means that all the people living in society are equal, people should not be discriminated on the basis of caste, religion, colour and sex. All people should have equal opportunities to develop their personalities, all should have equal facilities to use public places, religious places and places of entertainment. The State should not adopt the policy of untouchability and the interests of the minorities should be safeguarded.
According to Barker, it is the main objective of society to give opportunity to each individual to develop his inborn talent. So, the establishment of adequate conditions for all is social justice.
Laski is of the view that to provide equal social rights is social justice. Establishment of social justice is the responsibility of the State. Social justice has been strongly emphasised in Indian Constitution and the Government of India has passed general laws to establish Social Justice.
Economic justice: Social justice and Economic Justice are intimately related to each other. Aristotle considered economic inequality to be improper. Kautilya suggested that the State would provide means to live to the orphans, helpless and the disabled. The State would organise economic system in such a way as to provide justice to its citizens. Karl Marx, the exfounder of Communism, called economic justice to be the basis of social, political and cultural justice. Nowadays, social justice without economic justice is thought to be sheer imagination. M.C. Chagla has rightly commented that freedom is meaningless if it obstructs the realisation of economic justice. Social justice has no value for a hungry and unemployed person.
According to Setalvad, “Economic justice is the provision of equal opportunities to the citizens to acquire wealth and use it for their living, it is applied to those persons who are disabled or old or unemployed and, therefore, not in a position to acquire wealth and should be helped by society to live.” Important elements of economic justice are mentioned below:
1. The bare necessities of all the citizens should be provided with.
2. Every individual should be given the sources of livelihood. Adequate wages for their work should be given.
3. Under special circumstances, citizens have the right to get government aid. The state should protect the old, unemployed and economically infirm.
4. Men and women should get equal wages for equal work.
5. The scholars differ in their views about the control over property and sources of production.
It is the State’s responsibility to establish economic justice. The State aims at eliminating economic inequality. Economic justice is the very foundation of modern state. A just society cannot be established without economic justice. The Government of India is trying its best to maintain economic justice.
Q. 3. What measures have been taken in India to secure social justice to its citizens?
Ans. At the time of independence in 1947, India was one of the poorest countries in the world. It was largely as a result of the economic exploitation by the British regime. At that time there was no economic and social justice in India. There were inequalities based on caste, class and region. That is why the framers of the Indian Constitution set the goal of social justice in the Preamble of the Constitution.
1. Untouchability abolished. Untouchability has been a bane to the Indian Society. Social justice is impossible to achieve where untouchability is practiced in any form. Article 17 abolishes untouchability and its practice in any form is forbidden. This Article was further strengthened by the Untouchability (Offences) Act, 1995. It provided punishment for refusing admission to places of worship, restaurants, hotels, hospitals, and public wells.
2. Equal access to public places. All the citizens of India, irrespective of their caste and creed, have an equal access to public places like parks, hotels, places of entertainment, roads and the use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, etc.
3. Scheduled castes and scheduled tribes: Indian Government has taken special steps to improve the economic conditions and social status of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. Reservations have been made in the services for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. Seats have been reserved for them in the Parliament and the State Legislatures. The community development schemes have also been extended to the Harijans to remove social and economic inequalities. The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes have been given preferential treatment in schools, colleges and employment. 14 January 2019, 10%. reservation also given to economic weaker sections of general cagetory.
4. Abolition of Zamindari: Zamindari is abolished and many steps have been taken for the welfare of small farmers.
5. Free and compulsory education: The State endeavoured to provide free and compulsory education to children. In many states free education is provided upto eighth standard.
6. Five-year plans: The basic aim of Five-Year Plans is to remove poverty, unemployment and to raise the standard of living of the people. The Five-Year Plans have evolved programmes of minimum needs, particularly for the weaker sections of the society.
7. Antyodaya: In many states, Antyodaya scheme has been adopted. The aim of Antyodaya scheme is to help the poorest people so that their minimum needs are fulfilled.
8. Many steps have been taken for the promotion of cottage and small-scale industries.
9. The government has tried to provide living wage, good conditions of work and reasonable standards of living to all the workers.
10. The government has adopted various programmes of social welfare.
However, the goal of the socialistic pattern of society has yet to be achieved. In order to achieve the social justice, the government has to work for speedy economic growth and has to do a lot of things for the welfare of weaker sections of the society.
Q.4. Describe the two major concepts of justice in the context of history of ideas.
Ans. Following are the two major concepts of justice in the context of history of ideas:
1. Numerical concept of justice: According to British utilitarian philosopher, Jeremy Bentham, “Everyone is to count for one, nobody for more than one.” This statement of Bentham may be considered as the core of the concept of numerical justice.
Numerical justice gives equal share to all. Numerical Justice emphasises that none should be given preferential treatment. Numerical justice opposes inequality. It means even unequals would be treated as equals. The Greek city states took the rule so far that many offices were filled by lot. Modern liberal democracies are also based on this principle. Numerical justice is sometimes called democratic justice.
Numerical justice is opposed to the geometrical concept of justice. While the numerical justice emphasises on equal share to all, the geometrical concept of justice means, “equal share to equals and unequal to unquals”.
2. Geometric concept of justice: Plato and Aristotle were the two main supporters of the geometric concept of justice. According to this concept, the rights or powers should be allotted to persons on the basis of their merits, qualification, talent and their attitude towards the state. Aristotle is against natural equality. He asserted that a person should get as much regard and position as much ability he has. According to the geometrical concept only those person should rule who have the ability and eligibility for that. To conclude this concept means, “Equal share to equals and unequal to unequals”. Geometrical justice is also equated with the aristocratic justice.