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Showing posts from April 2, 2014

An Ambedkar for our times

Today, Ambedkar certainly outshines every other leader in terms of public acceptance. However, the incidences of casteism also show parallel growth. This paradoxical phenomenon can be explained only by separating the real Ambedkar from the unreal one In an interview published in Outlook (March 10, 2014), Arundhati Roy says, “We need Ambedkar — now, urgently” — it was in connection with the publication of a new annotated edition of Ambedkar’s

Poorly performing public services

Implementation of the Right to Education Act and the National Rural Health Mission should lead to better outcomes but we see the reverse There is something ironic about politicians making announcements about the Right to Education or the Right to Health when the only thing they can ensure is allocation of funds. Their control over the usage of these funds is somewhat weak; the overall quality of services is even weaker; their control over actual health or educational outcomes is the weakest. Looking at education and health behaviours and outcom

When the courts legislate and execute

DOCTORINE OF BASIC STRUCTURE: The Judiciary curtailed autocratic politics by striking down Article 329A during the Emergency. Picture shows Jayaprakash Narayan leading a protest against the Emergency.
Our fundamental rights are the conscience of the Constitution. Every legal right stems from our ability to retain the integrity and the structure of our Constitution In 1973, a Bench comprising 13 Supreme Court judges ruled by a majority that Article 368 of the Constitution “does not enable Parliament to alter the basic structure or framework of the Constitution.” The Court ruled what has come to be known as “the basic structure” doctrine — a judicial principle that the Indian Constitution has certain “basic features” that cannot be altered or destroyed through amendments by Parliament. Paramount among these are the fundamental rights guarenteed by the Constitution.

Democracy will not suit China: Xi Jinping

APChinese President Xi Jinping. (file photo)
China's President Xi Jinping has said that multiparty democracy and development models of other countries "did not suit China" and would "lead to catastrophic consequences" if adopted by Beijing. Mr. Xi, who began a decade-long term as President in March of last year, said the Communist Party of China (CPC) would "never stop" taking forward reforms, but at the same time as far as the ruling party was concerned the one-party political system would not change.