Since individuals constitute society, they form the units of society. As a member (or unit) of society or the state a man must behave in a way which is good for all and which is helpful in promoting the welfare of society. Society calls upon the individuals to follow certain norms. These are obligations or duties.
A duty is an obligation. As a member of society or state, the individual has to observe these obligations of society. Rights and duties are related to each other. They are the two sides of the same coins. They are the same conditions seen from different angles.
The rights of one are the duties of the other and vice versa. In the absence of duties rights become insignificant and duties are fruitless in the absence of rights. If we have right to enjoy our rights, it is our cardinal duty to perform our duties.
If the state guarantees the enjoyment of certain rights to us, the state, at the same time, wants us to perform certain duties also. Otherwise, we are punished. We have certain moral duties to perform and certain legal duties which we are bound to perform.
Moral duties are those obligations which we should observe but we are not legally bound to observe them. It is our moral duty that we should serve our parents, teachers, brothers and sisters and the relatives. It is the moral duty of every one that he should lend a helping hand to the poor and down-trodden.
It is the moral duty of every individual that he should look after his family and earn money by fair means. It is our moral duty that we should serve our village, our province, nation and the world to all possible extents. China committed an aggression on India on 20th October, 1962 and emergency was declared in the country. In 1965 and 1971 Pakistan committed an aggression on India. At that time it was our moral duty to serve our country to our best abilities.
There is a marked difference between legal duties and moral duties. It depends entirely on the conscience of the individual to perform moral duties or not to perform them. But an individual is legally bound to perform legal duties. If he does not perform them, he will be punished by the state. It is the legal duty of every citizen to show obedience to the constitution, commands of law and pay taxes regularly and honestly. It is our legal duty to remain loyal to our country.
Traitors are tried by the Judiciary and are punished by the state. If the state recruits us in army compulsorily at the time of emergency, it is our duty to join the army and make our best possible efforts to defend the country.