ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Reaffirming the Subordinate Status of State


The idea of rule of law and the concept of human rights will not change at borders of the states. Human right is a universal concept which can be termed as the universal rule of law. The rule of law which is structured on principles of restricted governmental power, equality before law and judicial process has its roots in Magna Carta of 1215; it limited the exercise of power by the king with respect to the liberties of his subjects. The interpretation given by various nations and governmental bodies to the concept of sovereignty is only of subordinate relevance. Though one might site various authorities like that of international humanitarian law and international criminal law to counter this argument, it is a fact that crimes which have been committed by states against civilians often fall under the category of internal affairs of state which cannot be interfered with or questioned by the international community. This is because of the failure of international community to place those principles of international application above the sovereignty of the state.

The idea of state got its recognition in the international forums only because of the thought that the states will act as units to enforce law, justice and human rights in an effective, efficient and better manner. With the undeserving acceptance of the idea of sovereignty by the world community, the states sowed and harvested the evil crops popularly called as spirit of nationalism or nationhood. The spirit of nationalism undermines the universality of law. It undermines the basic purpose of the creation of the state, it gives undeserving and improper importance to the entity of the state, and it gives scope for the abuse of state power in the name of protecting, preserving and upholding national interests.

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