Secularism refers to the belief that religion should not be involved in the organisation of a society. A secular state is one in which the State does not officially promote any particular religion as the State religion. India is a secular State. Here, all religions are treated with equal respect every citizen of India has the right to practise his/her own religion.
All citizens are equal in the eyes of the law. Our country neither favour any particular religion, nor does it discriminate against any religion. The government cannot formulate such policy which discriminates between various religious communities that live in India. In short, secularism refers to the separation of religion from the State. Every religion has the freedom to grow and prosper in India.
Our Constitution has the provision for Fundamental Rights. These rights protect us as citizens against the misuse of State power and the tyranny of efs . This is the majority communities . In this way , we see that the ideals of secularism as religious freedom for all get translated into Fundamental Rights .
Need for Secularism
It is important to separate religion from the State for the following reasons:
- Secularism is important for a country to function democratically. Almost every country in the world has more than one religious group. From among these groups, one group may be in a majority. If this majority religious group has access to state secular basis.
- According to our Constitution, only a secular state can achieve its objectives by ensuring power, it may misuse this power and financial resources to discriminate against persons of other religious groups.
- Any form of domination based on religion may violate the Fundamental Rights that a democratic country guarantees to its citizens.
- It is essential for a democratic country to be secular because it has to protect the freedom of individuals to exit from their religion, adopt another religion or have the freedom to interpret religious teachings differently.
Although, the term “Secular” was inserted in the Preamble in 1976, yet India has always been a secular state, India is a vast country with a diversity of cultures and religions. In fact, the fraternity and unity a country like India could be built only on a secular basis. According to our Constitution, only a secular state can achieve its objectives by ensuring the following elements :
- One religious community does not dominate another religious group in the country. Some members of a religious group do not dominate other members of the same religious community.
- The state does not enforce any particular religion nor does it take away the religious freedom of individuals.