The Directive Principles of State Policy are guidelines to the central and state governments of India. The governments must keep these principles in mind while framing laws and policies. These provisions of the Constitution of India are not enforceable by any court of law. But the principles are considered fundamental in the governance of the country.

The principles have been inspired by the Directive Principles stated in the Constitution of Ireland and also by the principles of Gandhian philosophy.

The main aim of these principles is to create social and economic conditions under which all the citizens can lead a good life.

The Directive Principles of State Policy have been listed in the Constitution under articles 36 to 51.

A new directive was added by Forty Second Amendment. It speaks about the duty of the state to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wild life of the country.

Types of Directive Principles

Some are concerned with socio economic development, some are related to Gandhian thought, and some to foreign policy. The Constitution does not classify them under different heads, but they are classified under the following specific categories:

  • Principles promoting social and economic equality
  • Principles related to Gandhian thought
  • Principles related to International peace and security
  • Miscellaneous Principles