May 24, 2019

Q & A: An Indian Political Theorist on the Triumph of Narendra Modi’s Hindu Nationalism | The New Yorker


On Thursday, Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (B.J.P.) handily won another five-year term from voters across India, cementing Modi’s control of the country and making clear his formidable popularity. Not only did the Hindu-nationalist B.J.P. show surprising strength in parts of the country where it has historically been weaker but the crushing defeat of the Congress Party means that there is no real alternative to Modi’s rule. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi—the son, grandson, and great-grandson of Prime Ministers and the current face of the Nehru family dynasty—even lost his seat in the state of Uttar Pradesh. Modi will now have five more years to pursue his agenda, with even less opposition.


India 2019 Election Result: Modi 2.0 - Majoritarianism Normalised? | Subhash Gatade

This election verdict will have vital ramifications for democracy’s onward journey for decades together, and silencing and further invisibilisation of religious minorities would be its logical outcome.

The Hour of Lynching - vigilante violence in India | The Guardian


India: Court Notice in Case to de-register political parties with religious, caste, ethnic or linguistic connotations

Delhi HC issues notice in plea to de-register political parties having religious connotations
Aditi Singh May 24 2019

The Delhi High Court today issued notice in a plea seeking a direction to the Election Commission to de-register political parties with religious, caste, ethnic or linguistic connotations within three months.
The plea by petitioner in person Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay also seeks to de-register such political parties which are using a flag similar to the national flag, if they fail to change it within three months.
Notice to the Election Commission was issued by a Division Bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Anup J Bhambhani.
The petitioner has argued that an appeal by any election candidate to vote or refrain from voting for any person on the grounds of religion, race, caste, community or language, national symbols, such as national flag or national emblem etc, is a corrupt practice under Section 123(3) of the Representation of the People’s Act, 1951.
Presently, there are many political parties such as Hindu Sena, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Indian Union Muslim League etc. with religious, caste, ethnic, linguistic connotations. In addition, there are political parties including Indian National Congress, which use a flag similar to the national flag, which is against the spirit of Section 123 of the RPA, 1951, the petition reads.
Such a practice is thus in violation of the mandate of Section 123 (3), it has been contended.
It is further stated that the powers of the Election Commission under Article 324 of the Constitution of India are wide-ranging and include the power to ensure smooth conduct of elections in a fair and free manner.
 The matter will be heard next on July 17.

source: https://barandbench.com/delhi-hc-issues-notice-in-plea-to-de-register-political-parties-having-religious-connotations/

India: Meghalaya High Court Division Bench overrules Hindu Country judgment

"Legally flawed, superfluous": Meghalaya High Court Division Bench overrules Hindu Country judgment

Murali Krishnan May 24 2019  

A Division Bench of Meghalaya High Court has overruled the controversial judgment of a single judge which had stated that India should have been declared a Hindu country during the Partition.
A Bench of Chief Justice Mohammad Yaqoob Mir and Justice HS Thangkhiew ruled that the judgment of Justice SR Sen is legally flawed and is inconsistent with the constitutional principles. The observations made and directions passed in the judgment are totally superfluous, the Division Bench held.
Therefore it set aside the judgment in its entirety.
“After bestowing our thoughtful consideration to the entire gamut of the matter we have reached to a firm conclusion that the judgment impugned dated 10.12.2018 is legally flawed and is in-consistent with the constitutional principles, the observations made and directions passed therein are totally superfluous, therefore, is set aside in its entirety, as such shall be non est.”
On December 10 last year, Justice Sen in his controversial judgment had urged the Prime Minister, Home Minister, Law Minister and the MPs to enact laws to allow the Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhist, Parsis, Christians, Khasis, Jaintias and Garos who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan to live in India and to be given citizenship.
The judgment, which was delivered in a case pertaining to domicile certificate, had also stated that India should have been declared a Hindu country during the Partition, though it chose to remain a secular nation. It stated,
“Pakistan declared themselves as an Islamic country and India since was divided on the basis of religion should have also been declared as a Hindu country but it remained as a secular country”
The judgment had caused outrage and Justice Sen had to subsequently issue a clarificatory statement asserting that “I am not a religious fanatic rather I respect all the religions because to me God is one.”
An appeal was filed against the same in the Supreme Court. A PIL filed against the same is still pending before the Supreme Court.
The High Court, however, noted in its judgment that pendency of SLP in Supreme Court will not bar the Division Bench from deciding the instant appeal.
“Pendency of SLP with aforesaid prayer in our humble opinion will not operate as a bar for deciding the instant appeal as is also submitted by learned counsel for the parties, more so Hon‟ble Judge against whom aforesaid relief has been sought on reaching superannuation has retired.”

India: Saffron Second Wave - Journalist Revati Lal in Conversation with Teesta Setalvad | May 23, 2019