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

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Sandwiched Nehru

Jawaharlal Nehru’s tryst with secularism and communal politics may be enumerated through a critical rereading of the religious apprehensions expressed by the Christian community over the question of their right to propagation. Was Indian secularism an effective ideological substitute to communal politics or merely a tactical tool for achieving political gains during Nehru’s times? Nehru’s vision of secularism, in having to negotiate the politics of Hindu fundamentalism as well as Congress majoritarianism, was forced to accommodate the flavours of a majoritarian cultural climate with some preferential treatment to Hindu rights.

Aspiring for Universal Health Coverage through Private Care

The National Health Policy 2017 makes a case for expanding private sector participation through collaboration. The policy offers little assurance of providing integrated and universal healthcare.

RSS, BJP and Communal Polarisation in Uttar Pradesh Polls

Ahead of the 2017 Uttar Pradesh assembly elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and its allied organisations are making concerted efforts to achieve better coordination on the ground to consolidate the Hindu votes and crack the complex caste arithmetic of the state. With the Hindutva card unlikely to cut much ice with the backward castes and Dalits, it is crucial for the BJP, to calibrate its campaign strategy to offer these less empowered communities more political representation to reap electoral dividends in the impending polls.

Voices of Dissent

Words Matter: Writings against Silence edited and introduced by K Satchidanandan, Gurgaon: Penguin Books India, 2016; pp 260, ₹399.

Bridging the Dalit-Left-Liberal Divide

Dalit and Adivasi politics, long enslaved by liberal civil society, has found a new voice in the aftermath of Rohith Vemula's suicide and subsequent student protests. The left-liberal establishments will benefit from standing together with this subaltern democracy in resisting the Hindu right-wing forces.

Democracy and the Popular Discourse on History

The people of India are disillusioned. The present phase of neo-liberal capitalism, and the changes that it spells, do not take into account the vertically and horizontally disintegrated working class and the structurally remodelled castes-communities. The Jawaharlal Nehru University debate around the constitutional right to speak only re-emphasises the fact that if we wish to stall the rise of fascism, the past needs to be reconstructed as a paradigm for the future.

First Amendment to Constitution of India

India's Constitution has been amended over a hundred times since its inception in 1950. The landmark amendments are discussed with special emphasis on the first amendment, which altered the way the freedom of speech and expression was originally understood by the framers of the Constitution.

Sinners of the Partition

Muslims against Partition: Revisiting the Legacy of Allah Bakhsh and Other Patriotic Muslims by Shamsul Islam; Pharos Media, 2015; pp 216, ₹250.

Tracing the Emergence and Consolidation of Hindutva in Assam

While the Bharatiya Janata Party’s political experiment in making inroads into Assam over the past decade has been discussed at length, surprisingly little attention has been devoted towards understanding the contribution of the social and cultural wings of Sangh Parivar in deepening the roots of Hindutva in the state. This analysis becomes important primarily because Assam (like her other north-eastern sister states) does not provide a particularly fertile territory for the growth of Hindutva, an ideology which finds a natural point of entry in the “Hindi heartland” states, with its invocation of Ram Mandir, cow protection or the propagation of Hindi and Sanskrit languages. Given the complexity of the demography of this region that consists of a mélange of races, ethnicities, faiths, customs and cultures, and the multiplicity of issues, it becomes extremely difficult for an ideology riding on religious nationalism to identify common ground that enables it to make a dent in the region. This essay makes an attempt to understand how Hindu nationalism navigated through this difficult terrain to establish itself both institutionally and ideologically at the social and cultural realm in Assam.

Dhar on Tenterhooks

A communal flare up may have been avoided in the Bhojshala complex at Dhar in Madhya Pradesh, but majoritarian Hindu groups continue to stoke popular communal passions unabated.

Atoning for the Past

Responding to Abhijit Sarkar’s “Rhodes Will Not Fall Alone” the authors argue that the aim of their campaign has been the opposite of “sanitising history.” The campaign wants to begin and sustain a long overdue conversation in Britain about its colonial past.

History of the Undoing of History

Despite the recent controversy that has dogged history writing in India, since ancient and even pre-modern times, patricians and rulers have used history for control as well as for moral/administrative education and entertainment. This apart, historians too have been guilty of focusing too much on empiricism rather than seeking to dwell on the nature and philosophy of history.

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