The Concept of Fraternity

The Concept of Fraternity

What is Fraternity?
 Fraternity means a sense of common brotherhood of all Indians, which gives unity and solidarity to social life.
 In the concluding session of the Constituent Assembly, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar pointed out the absence of recognition of the principle of fraternity in the Constitution. He stated that without fraternity, equality and liberty would be no deeper than coats of paint.
 Fraternity has been most forgotten in our Constitution and in our electoral process.

Why is Fraternity essential?
 It is one of the four pillars of constitutional morality spelt out in the Preamble of India’s Constitution: justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity.
 Without fraternity, equality and liberty can’t be achieved, because the idea of fraternity is closely linked to social solidarity.
 Gains coming from the other three are strengthened and enriched by a sense of fraternity.

What are challenges in achieving Fraternity?
 The diversity of cultures and traditions among different communities can lead to misunderstandings and conflicts. This can create social and cultural barriers that hamper the spirit of brotherhood.
 Political ideologies and Political differences can create deep divides in society, can lead to polarization and restrict cooperation and dialogue.
 Lack of trust, mutual respect and understanding can undermine the spirit of common brotherhood.
 Constitutional morality, which is based on the values enshrined in the Indian Constitution, is critical to maintaining fraternity. The failure of constitutional morality can lead to a loss of confidence in institutions and the rule of law.
 Inequalities continue to persist and so do those emanating from the caste system.
 Inter-state conflicts and challenges to internal security like left-wing extremism, terrorism, cybersecurity, fake news. 

What are Constitutional provisions related to Fraternity?
 The principle of fraternity was added to the principles in the Preamble along with liberty, equality, and justice.
 Article 51A (Fundamental Duties) added to by the 42nd Amendment 1976 referred to the duty of every citizen ‘to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India’.
 While both the Preamble and the Fundamental Duties cannot be legally enforced, but they have a moral, spiritual appeal.

What are steps taken by government to ensure Fraternity?
 Facilitating cooperation through Inter-state councils, Zonal councils, NITI aayog
 Initiatives like Ek Bharat – Shrestha Bharat, National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH), etc.
 A ‘uniform’ and ‘Common Minimum Programme for Value Education’ was launched across the entire schooling system with a focus on ‘core Constitutional values’.

 Fraternity is an essential principle that requires collective action and public empathy. The Constitution recognizes the importance of fraternity, but its implications and duties require further discussion and understanding

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