Chapter III of the
Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand
Rights and Liberties of the Thai People
Section 24. All persons shall enjoy rights and liberties
subject to the provisions of the Constitution. Man and woman shall have equal rights. The restriction of rights and liberties which is
contrary to the will of the provisions of the Constitution cannot be done.
Section 25. All persons are equal before the law and shall enjoy equal protection under the law.
Section 26. All persons shall enjoy political rights. The exercise of political rights shall be in accordance with the provisions of law.
Section 27. Every person shall enjoy full liberty to
profess a religion, a religious sect or creed, and to exercise a form of worship in accordance with his belief; provided that it is not contrary to his civic duties and to public order or good morals. In exercising [such liberty], every person is protected from any act of the State, which is derogatory to his rights or detrimental to his due benefits, on the grounds of professing a religion, a religious sect or creed, or of exercising a form of worship in accordance with his belief different from that of others.
Section 28. No person shall be inflicted with a criminal
punishment unless he has committed an act which the law in force
at the time of commission provides it to be an offense and
imposes a punishment therefor, and the punishment to be inflicted
on such person shall not be heavier than that provided by the law in force at the time of commission.
Section 29. In criminal cases, it shall be presumed that an accused or an offender is innocent. Prior to the final decision indicating that such person is guilty, such person can not be treated as guilty person. Submission of bail by an accused or an offender in a criminal case shall be urgently considered and the bail can not be set in excess of necessity. The refusal of bail must be in accordance with principles provided in law and must be immediately informed to the accused or offender. The right to appeal against the refusal of bail shall be protected as provided by law. Person detained or imprisoned shall have the right to receive reasonable visits.
Section 30. Every person shall enjoy the liberty of his person. The arrest, detention or search of a person, irrespective of any circumstance, shall not be made except by virtue of law. However, the arrested or searched person shall be informed of the
charge or reason and reasonable detail of the arrest or search
without delay and the detained person shall have the right to
meet and consult with a lawyer personally. To inform any person of the charge against him, there must be reasonable evidence that such person may commit the
offenses as charged. In case of detention of any person, the detainee, the
public prosecutor or any person has the right to request to the
court with criminal jurisdiction that such detention is illegal.
After receiving such request, the court shall immediately hear the
case unilaterally. If the request has reasonable ground the
court shall order the detainor to bring the detainee to the
court immediately and if the detainor can not satisfactorily
prove to the court that such detention is legal, the court
shall immediately order the release of the detainee.
Section 31. In criminal case, the accused or defendant
shall have the right of fair and speedy investigation or trial.
Section 32. The accused or defendant in a criminal case
shall have the right of assistance from the state by providing the lawyer as specified by law. In civil cases, a person shall have the right of legal assistance from state as specified by law.
Section 33. A person shall have the right to refuse to
give any statement against oneself which might cause oneself to
be charged in criminal case. Statements from any person [which result] from torture, duress or use of force, or [a] statement resulting from any act which causes an involuntary statement shall not be heard as evidence.
Section 34. In the case where any person was inflicted with a criminal punishment by a final judgment, if it appears in
the judgment of the Court reviewing the case thereafter that
he did not commit the alleged offense, he shall be entitled to
compensation and to recover any right he had lost by virtue of
the results of the judgment upon the condition and in the manner
provided by law.
Section 35. Forced labor shall not be imposed except by
virtue of the law specifically enacted for the purpose of
averting imminent public calamity or by virtue of the law which provides for its imposition during the time when the country is
in a state of armed conflict or war, or when a state of emergency
or martial law is declared.
Section 36. Every person shall enjoy the liberty of dwelling.
Every person is protected for his peaceful habitation
in and for possession of his dwelling place. The entry into a
dwelling place without the consent of its possessor or the
search thereof shall not be made except by virtue of law.
Section 37. The property right of a person is protected.
The extent and the restriction of such right shall be
specified by law.
The succession is protected. The right of succession of
a person shall be specified by law.
Section 38. The expropriation of immovable property shall not be made except by virtue of the law specifically
enacted for the purpose of public utility, natural defence,
exploitation of national resources, town and country planning,
agricultural or industrial development, land reform, or other
public interests, and fair compensation shall be paid in due time to the owner thereof as well as to the person having the
right therein, who suffers loss by such expropriation, as to be
specified by the law.
The amount of compensation under paragraph one shall be
fairly assessed with due regard to the ordinary purchasing and
buying price, mode of acquisition, nature andsituation of the
immovable property and loss of a person who is expropriated.
The law on expropriation of immovable property shall
certainly specify the purpose of the expropriation and shall
clearly determine the period of time to fulfil that purpose of
such immovable property. The immovable property, if not being
used to fulfill that purpose within the period of time prescribed
by law, shall be returned to the original owner or his heir
unless it is used for other purposes according to paragraph one
pursuant to the provisions of law. The return of the immovable property to the original owner or his heir under paragraph three and the claim of
compensation paid shall be as specified by law.
Section 39. A person shall have the liberty to express
opinion by speech, writing, printing, advertisement and other
means of communication.
The restriction of such liberty in paragraph one shall
not be imposed except by virtue of law for maintaining the
security of state or safeguarding the liberty, dignity,
reputation, family right or privacy of other person or
maintaining public order or good morals or preventing
deterioration of mentality or health of the people.
The closure of a publishing firm or publication which is
the restriction of liberty under this section without the
judgement or order of court shall not be done.
The official censor of presentation of news or articles
in the newspaper, radio broadcast or television prior to the
presentation shall not be done except it is done while the
country is in period of battle or war, or while a state of
emergency or martial law is declared, however it must be done by
virtue of law enacted according to paragraph two.
Owners of newspaper businesses or other public media must
be persons of Thai Nationality according to the provisions of law.
The support of money or other property to private
newspaper by the state shall not be done.
Section 40. Every person shall have equal right of receiving primary education according to the law on compulsory education. Every person shall enjoy the liberty of education; provided that such education is not contrary to his civic duties under the Constitution, and to the law relating to
compulsory education and the law relating to the organization of
Liberty [in academic pursuits] shall be protected, however it must
not be contrary to the duty of the citizen.
Section 41. Persons shall have the right to receive
standard public health services and the poor person shall receive
free medical treatment according to the provisions of law.
Section 42. Every person shall enjoy the liberty to
assemble peacefully and without arms. [This] restriction on liberty . . . shall not
be imposed except by virtue of the law specifically enacted for
the case of public meetings and for securing public conveniences
in the use of public places or for maintaining public order
while the country is in a state of battle or war, or while a
state of emergency or martial law is declared.
Section 43. Every person shall enjoy the liberty to
form an association, union, league, co-operative or any other group.
The restriction of liberty under paragraph one shall not
be imposed except by virtue of provisions of law to protection of
public interest of people or to maintain peace or good morals of
the people or to prevent any economic monopoly.
Section 44. Every person shall enjoy the liberty to
form a political party for the purpose of carrying out political
activities through the means of ademocraticregime with the King
as Head of State as provided in this Constitution. The formation, incorporation, management and dissolution
of a political party shall be in accordance with the provisions
of the law on political parties. A political party shall prepare an account showing
its assets and liabilities and shall publicly declare sources of
its income and expenditure as the law provides.
Section 45. Every person shall enjoy the liberty of
communication by lawful means.
The censorship, detention, or disclosure of communication
between persons including anyother act disclosing a statement
in the communication between persons, shall not be made except
by virtue of the law specifically enacted for the purpose of
maintaining public order or good morals or security of the State.
Section 46. Every person shall enjoy the liberty of
traveling and the liberty of making the choice of his residence
within the Kingdom.
The restriction on liberties under paragraph one shall
not be imposed except by virtue of the law specifically enacted
for the purpose of maintaining the security of the State, public
order, public welfare, town and country planning, or welfare of
No person of Thai nationality shall be deported or
prohibited from entering the Kingdom.
Section 47. Family rights, dignity or reputation and
right of privacy of every person shall be protected.
The announcement or release the news either by statement
or picture or any means to the public which will effect the right
of persons in family, dignity or reputation and privacy shall not
be done except for the public interest.
Section 48. A person shall have the right to submit
complaints as the law provides.
- (PART II) A person shall have the right to
receive information or news from the government agency or state
agency or public enterprise in order to check the performance of
a government official or state official when such matter has or may have an effect on the living of such person as the law provided.
(PART III) The right of a person to sue a
governmental agency which is a juristic person to be liable for
an act done by its official is protected.
(PART IV) Persons who are in the armed
forces, the police force and other government officials, local
government officials and employees of State organizations shall
enjoy the same rights and liberties under the Constitution as
those accorded to the general person unless such enjoyment is
restricted by law, by-laws or regulations issued by virtue of the
law specifically enacted insofar as it is concerned with
politics, efficiency or discipline.
(PART V) The right of a person to
engage in an enterprise or an occupation and fair free competition
shall be protected. The restriction on such rights . . . shall
be imposed only by virtue of the law specifically enacted for the
purpose of maintaining security and safety of the State or the economy of
the country, protecting the people on public utilities,
maintaining public order and good morals, organizing the rule on
occupation, consumer protection, town and country planning,
natural resources or environment conservation, public welfare,
or for the purpose of preventing monopoly or eliminating unfair
(PART VI) No person shall exercise the rights
and liberties according to the Constitution against* the Nation,
religions, the King and the Constitution.
*[Emphasis added by ameriwire]
Public document, published by the Government of Thailand at: http://www.parliament.go.th/files/library/b05-b.htm
Accessed 26 May 2004.