Current Developments

Collective punishment in the Indian-administered Kashmir

India violating the prohibition of collective punishment

On 19th May 2020, Indian security forces destroyed at least fifteen houses during a military operation against two separatist militants in Kashmir. This destruction of houses is merely a part of the larger pattern of ‘collective punishments’ carried out in the Indian-administered Kashmir. In this blog post, the author argues that the Indian government’s recent security measures and policies in Kashmir violate the prohibition of collective punishment and therefore breach …

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Current Developments

A crisis (not) averted

How the government-imposed lockdown led to a mass exodus of migrant workers in India

The COVID-19 led humanitarian crisis in India has resulted in, what journalist P. Sainath calls, ‘the discovery of its migrant workforce’. The number of internal migrants in India is estimated to be 139 million (Census 2011) with an annual average movement of 9 million people recorded between the states during the period of 2011 to 2016 (Economic Survey of India 2017). In what is known as one of the most …

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IL in Pandemic TimesSymposium

Creating a kingdom of stone walls

The crisis in India’s emergency communication strategy amidst the COVID-19 pandemic

India has 376 million active social media users, out of which 66 million are aged between 5 and 11 years, suggesting that a significant number of India’s demographics on social media are school children. Such a vulnerable demographic coupled with the rampant media censorship has created a labyrinth of misinformation on social media in the past. Similarly, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Social media is flooded with fake news – ranging …

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Current Developments

India’s battle against Covid-19: The lockdown of human rights

India is currently facing the largest lockdown in the world, with over 1.3 billion people locked inside their homes. While Prime Minister Modi adopted this measures to “win the battle” against the Covid-19 pandemic, a large portion of the country is left wondering if their well-being was also accounted for in the hasty decisions of the Government. In a bid to flatten the curve, the Indian government seems to have …

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Current Developments

The citizenship test in India

The National Register of Citizens through national and international perspectives

The National Register of Citizens (NRC), published on August 31, 2019, which documents legal citizens in India, has declared 19 lakh (or 1,9 million) residents of Assam as illegal immigrants, a number substantially lower than that provided by the Supreme Court of India in 2004 on the total number of illegal migrants in this state in North-Eastern India. This deviation raises many questions, including on the ambiguous stance of the …

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BofaxeCurrent Developments

India’s mosque that was and temple that will be

On the issue of minority land rights in international law

“Mandir mein, masjid mein tu aur tu hi hai imaano mein” [You’re there in the temples, in the mosques, and in all belief]. These lyrics, performed in a musical ode to the eternal sentiment of love as part of the famous 1960 Indian film “Mughal-E-Azam”, echoe the quest for inter-religious harmony in the subcontinent. This theme was at issue in the Indian Supreme Court’s landmark judgment of 9 November in …

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Current Developments

Manual scavenging: outlawed, yet persisting

The stinking legacy of suffocation and stigma captures the degrading practice of Manual Scavenging in India. Twenty-six years after this repulsive practice has been outlawed by the Manual Scavengers and Construction of Dry Latrines (Prohibition) Act, there are still 182,505 manual scavengers across India, with 740,048 households using the services of manual scavengers for clearing out human excreta. Alarmingly, this number does not include septic tanks, public sewers, and railway …

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BofaxeCurrent Developments

Land and identity

On India’s revocation of Jammu & Kashmir’s special constitutional status

“There will be chaos if our identity is compromised”. This statement by Mehbooba Mufti, former Chief Minister of the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), shows that the long-simmering conflict over the region (see also Bofax Nr. 517E “Trading Blows”) has once again reached boiling point. Juxtaposing the interplay of land and minority identity in Kashmir with the current ascendancy of land rights in international law, we see that …

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Current Developments

India’s anti-satellite missile test

Another reminder of the gaps in the 1967 Outer Space Treaty

In a much-publicized address on 27th March, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that the country successfully tested its anti-satellite (ASAT) missile by destroying a live mini-satellite placed in Low Earth Orbit (LEO), 300 kilometres from the earth’s surface. Codenamed “Operation Shakti”, the ASAT missile has been developed indigenously by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). Reportedly, an interceptor missile was used, which was part of the DRDO’s ongoing …

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DiscussionResponse

A BIT of resistance

A response to Prof. Prabhash Ranjan’s plea for embedded liberalism

In our current framework of post-truth/factual/reality politics, much of the debates surrounding crucial issues of both domestic and international governance are invariably couched in an inflexible, partisan and for most parts, in parochial terms. There is either utter disdain towards opposing perspectives or deliberate display of ignorance for plausible and varying rationalities. Nothing has been as vehemently contested as the role of the state in the economy, financial intermediation and …

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