Yesterday there was a case in front of me, which shook me inside out. People were more focused on the goods they purchase by money over the life of a poor animal. So, before anything I want you all to know about the Fundamental duties our constitution wants you to perform. They have incorporated under article 51A in The Constitution under the chapter called fundamental duties. The Government is also planning to assign its different Ministries with the task of spreading awareness about Fundamental duties among people.
Before anything can I ask, do our lives are possible without these animals, nature. I have seen some old people worried about the decreasing numbers of sparrows, don’t you think the number of every animal has gone down, and who is not aware of deteriorating nature and increasing associated problems such as increasing pollution. Do these animals have their homes to stay in, income to buy food, and brains to think like us, and mouth or language to share what they feel. If we are with brains, we have no right to play with the emotions of animals, they have nervous systems, which could feel pain and happiness. You don’t know but my dear everything is connected, just think before your actions. Our fundamental duties have also given us one duty which is to have compassion for living creatures. Let’s see the other duties:
The rights and duties of citizens are correlative and inseparable, so one should aware of the duties. Let’s see what duties our constitution has provided us to perform under above described act:
To abide by the Indian Constitution and to respect its ideals and institutions such as the National Flag and the National Anthem.
To cherish and follow the noble ideals which inspired our national struggle for freedom like satyagraha, liberty, equality, etc.
To uphold and protect the sovereignty, unity, and integrity of India.
To defend the country and render national service (as army personnel) when called upon.
To promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India transcending religious, linguistic, and regional or sectional diversities; to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women.
To value and preserve the rich heritage of the country’s composite culture.
To protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers, and wildlife, and also to have compassion for living creatures.
To develop the scientific temper, humanism, and the spirit of inquiry and reform.
To safeguard public property and to abjure violence.
To strive towards excellence in all spheres of individual and, collective activity so that the nation constantly rises to higher levels of endeavor and achievement.
To provide opportunities for education to his/her child or ward between the age of six and fourteen years (added by the 86th Constitutional Amendment Act, 2002).
The idea of Fundamental Duties is inspired by the Constitution of the erstwhile USSR. The Japanese constitution is the only democratic constitution in the world that contains the duties of citizens. In 1976, the congress party set up the Sardar Swaran Singh Committee to make recommendations about the inclusion of fundamental duties to our constitution. Committee recommended the inclusion of a separate chapter on fundamental duties so that citizens should be conscious in addition to the enjoyment of rights provided under fundamental rights. The central government accepted these recommendations and enacted the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act, 1976 and, incorporated them in Part IV-A of the Constitution. All the eleven duties are listed in Article 51-A of the Constitution.
Some of them are moral duties while others are civil duties such as cherishing noble ideals of freedom struggle is a moral duty and, respecting National Flag, National Anthem is civic duties. Such duties were also part of Indian tradition, mythology, religion, and our daily practice. It was just codification of tasks integral to the Indian way of living. However, like the Directive Principles, the duties are also non-justiciable, which means if someone violates these duties no case could be registered against.
Fundamental duties are also criticized for not incorporating some important fundamental duties in the chapter such as casting votes, paying taxes, family planning, etc. Some duties are vague (not clear) such as different interpretations given in phrases like ‘noble ideals,’ ‘composite culture,’ ‘scientific temper,’ and so on.
Significance of Fundamental duties
They remind citizens that while enjoying their rights, they should also conscious of duties they owe to their country, their society, and their fellow citizens. It is also a warning against anti-national and anti-social activities like burning the national flag and destroying public property. It also promotes a sense of discipline and commitment among them and also creates a feeling that citizens are not mere spectators but equal and active participants in the realization of national goals. They also help courts in examining and determining the constitutional validity of laws, in 1992, the Supreme court ruled that in determining the constitutionality of the law, if the court seeks to give effect to fundamental duties, it may consider it reasonable. One more important thing that these laws could be enforceable by-laws. Hence, Parliament can provide for the imposition of appropriate penalty on failure to fulfill.
It was earlier said that these duties are not justiciable, but parliament has come up with many legal provisions for the implementation of some fundamental duties.
Prevention of Insults to National Honor Act (1971) prevents disrespect to the Constitution of India, the National flag, and the National Anthem.
The various criminal laws for punishments’ for encouraging enmity between different section of population, language, race, place of birth, religion, etc.
The Protection of Civil Rights Act (1955) provides for punishments to national integration as punishable offenses.
The Indian Penal Code (IPC) declares the imputations and assertions prejudicial to national integration as punishable offenses.
Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act of 1967 provides for declarations of communal organizations as an unlawful association.
The representation of the People Act (1951) provides for the disqualification of members of parliament or a state legislature for indulging in corrupt practices such as asking for votes on the ground of religion, caste, race, language, etc.
The Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972 prohibits trade in rare and endangered species. And the Forest (Conservation) Act of 1980 checks indiscriminate deforestation and diversion of forest land for non-forest purposes.
If are aware of our fundamental rights then why are we not aware of our fundamental duties. It’s our responsibility to fulfill both and work of our better involvement in Counties growth.
British India during the time of independence was divided into small or big 565 princely states. These princely states were ruled by Britishers indirectly, some were having their army, own police, currency and, they accepted the British rules by themselves called Britishparamountcy.
It is the story of the integration of these 565 princely states into one nation that is called India. This story is very important and, interesting to know, and challenging also for the leaders. When Mr. Jinnah was trying to make Pakistan as big as possible and even some of the princely states were also willing to stay independent. Let’s have a look:
The story starts on 3 June 1947, with an important phase of Indian history when India’s last British Governor-General Lord Louis Mountbatten was going to visit Delhi’s All India Radio, along with Jawahar Lal Nehru, Sardar Baldev Singh (leader of Sikhs), and Muhammad Ali Jinnah. (leader of Muslim league, who was asking a separate nation for Muslims) And He announced that “My first course, in all my discussions, was, therefore, to urge the political leaders to accept unreservedly the Cabinet mission plan of May 16, 1946. In my opinion, that plan provides the best arrangement that can be devised to meet the interests of all the communities of India. To my great regret, it has been impossible to obtain an agreement either on the Cabinet mission plan or on any other plan that would preserve the unity of India. But there can be no question of coercing any large areas in which one community has a majority to live against their will under a Government in which another community has a majority—and the only alternative to coercion is partition.“
And as Congress was agreed to the plan with no other option, Jawahar Lal Nehru announced the partition… “I am not happy to accept the plan of India’s partition, but now I am not doubtful also that we only have this path, we all will be grate that India’s part is separated with its own will, but by my farsightedness, I could see today’s decision to be true…” The plan all are talking about was the “Mountbatten Plan,” this plan had disturbed many who were not keen on a separated India.
Just after one day, On 4 June 1947 Lord Mountbatten called a press conference, in the Legislative assembly of that time and today’s parliament, and for that day Mountbatten had late-night mock drills. The day was important for everyone, approximately 300 journalists from all over the world were waiting to ask questions from Mountbatten related to the future of India. In this conference, Mountbatten said “I sincerely mean it when I say power will be transferred completely by 1947, the date of power by Britain in India would be around August 1947. I have already bought my steamer ticket for august 15, so this will be the date of transfer.”
That was surprising, as earlier British were going to leave India around June 1948. However, Mountbatten announced that the day is just 72 days ahead on 15 August. The freedom was certain, but this date came with two big tension in fount of leaders of Congress, first is how to control the increasing communal riots in the country and the other was that how many countries are becoming independent one, two or 565 the reason for the same was “lapse of paramountcy.” After the British, the princely states were independent to decide their future.
Treaty singed between Indian states and Britishers says:
It was the treaty between two sovereign states, a treaty between two heads of states and it was the treaty of friendship that both will respect each other and not interfere in each other’s administration and British guarantee peace between Indian states.
And the act of independence said that “our treaty rights with Indian state are hereby terminated and Indian status will be sovereign again.” That divided the country into many pieces, which could be advantageous to Mr. Jinnah, as he was instigating princely states for uprisings to make India weaker. (by saying every princely state could decide its future)
Lord Mountbatten was the man of the future and was worried about how the coming generations will think of him, every nook of the country was wet with blood (only in Kolkata 5000 were killed) and he was aware of his contribution to the riots. And both countries were becoming independent and future relations need to be ensured. B. P. Menon was the advisor of Mountbatten, suggested him to help in the integration of princely states, to control the spread of riots to princely states. Mountbatten was suspicious that leaders of Congress would accept if he intervenes in internal matters. B. P. Menon added that as much he know them, they could do anything for the country’s integration. Then Mountbatten had given his willingness to help, and, soon met with Sardar Patel. Jawahar Lal Nehru also appointed Mountbatten as a mediator between the Indian government and princely states.
As Lord Mountbatten was a member of the British Royal family, princely states were more favoring equal talks with him than with other Indian leaders. This strengthens the position of India, but B. P. Menon the government official working under English was suspicious that congress leader could believe in his loyalty or not. Sardar Patel took him in confidence and convince him to help in India’s integration, he eagerly wanted the freedom of a single India.
B.P. Menon created the papers of Instrument of accession (a contract for princely states to accept the rule of the Indian government) under Jawahar Lal Nehru, Sardar Patel, and Mountbatten. Kings were asked to singed these papers first.
The process of integration and disintegration
Hyderabad was sure to remain independent, Bhopal was attracted to join Pakistan, in west Junagarh and Jodhpur were creating problems. Maharaja of Jodhpur, Nawab of Bhopal and Baroda was keen to join with special concessions not acceptable to states department.
On 11 June 1947Travancore, declare itself independent on the very next day the Hyderabad also declared to make it an independent country after the 15th of August. It means the whole of south India would be disconnected from north India. The chaos was increasing, and to properly deal with the situation, a separate ministry was established under Sardar Patel, and B. P. Menon was appointed as the secretary. Travancore was predominant with King Balram Verma and his Diwan C. P. Aiyar, and both wanted Travancore to be independent. However, the people of Travancore were not happy with their decision. An incident happened, a mob tried to kill King Balram Verma which was enough to convince him, what its population wanted. Just before 3 days of freedom King sent a telegram of accepting the Instrument of Accession.
Sardar Patel established a link with princely states via All India Radio On 5 July 1947. He said, “It is a just a coincidence that some people are living under princely states and others are in British India, but our blood is one and our interest is also one and no one can break us in pieces and no boundary could become a hurdle, that’s why I want to suggest, we should sit together and make the laws as friends. I invite the king and others to the constituent assembly.”
But nothing changed, even kings who earlier were in the constituent assembly not ready to sign the Instrument of accession, and so now leaders involve Mountbatten. It was dangerous but with no other situation. On 25 July 1947, Mountbatten had put on all his medals to prove his connection to British Royal Family and move towards legislative assembly which is now called a parliament. Parliament was waiting for him with more than 100 kings of princely states, their he delivers a provoking speech.
Professor L. S. Rathore considers that speech of Mountbatten was not to provoke Kings to choose India or Pakistan but was full of signs and advantages to join with the dominion of India and, many princely states choose to join India after his speech. However, the challenges in integration were not over yet.
Hyderabad and Jammu Kashmir were outside India and Bhopal’a nawab Hamidulla Khan wanted to remain independent or to join Pakistan because he was one of the important chancellors of the Chamber of Princes, was close to Jinnah (you can conclude it from that Jinna pronounced him secretary-general of Pakistan), and strong friendship with Viceroy Mountbatten. Mountbatten wrote a letter to him, before 4 days of independence, and asked to sign an accession before 15 of august and give that to him, and if he wants to cancel it in the future he could till 25 august. After that Bhopal’s Nawab Hamidullah, change his mind and sent a letter to Patel for accepting India’s rule or accession.
As the date of independence coming closer, there was a state of confusion with a rumor that Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, and Bikaner (were closely related to one another) would join Pakistan. Earlier Jodhpur signed Instrument of accession, but later were not willing integrate, even open a factory of arms in Jodhpur, with a belief that Jaisalmer and Bikaner will support. After independence till 15 February 1950 Jaisalmer was suspicious to join India or Pakistan or remain independent. (inhabitants of the region were also in suspicion or threatened of any wrong decision of kings)
Jodhpur’s Maharaj Hanumant Singh met several times with Jinnah and other leaders of the Muslim league. In the last such meeting on 6 August 1947, Maharaj Hanumant Singh took the prince of Jaisalmer Kumar Girdhar Singh with him as Maharaj of Bikaner refuses to accompany him as he was worried to go alone. Jinnah offered a signed blank paper which could be filled with any demands of Maharaja to join Pakistan. Maharaja conditions to join were, to use Karachi port, free import of arms and the control of railway line which passes from Jodhpur to Hyderabad of Sindh and, some help to deal with the drought in Jodhpur area. However, the Maharaja of Jaisalmer Girdhar Singh didn’t support the proposal and then Jodhpur Maharaj Hanumant Singh also refused (due to suspicion on Hindu and Muslim revolt, and Jinnah’s tilt towards Muslims and Jaisalmer’s Kumar Girdhar Singh also refuse to join) And also asked some time to decide on the merger with Pakistan which angered Jinnah.
On 9 August 1947, Maharaja of Jodhpur Hanumant Singh was invited by Lord Mountbatten to New Delhi and after a conversation, the viceroy asked him to meet Sardar Patel. He met Sardar Patel on very next day and expressed his views to remain independent, but after sharing some words, Hanumant agreed to integrate with India. However, On 11 August 1947, he again reached the viceroy lodge and tear the papers of Instrument of Accession by saying he is not willing to accept the dictatorships of anybody and, point the gun over B. P. Menon. The scenario was soon joined by Lord Mountbatten but his aura was different, he asked Hanumant Singh to sign the Instrument of Accession, and the Maharaja signed that immediately.
Now let’s see the story of Junagarh it was 15 August 1947 when Nawab of Junagarh Muhammad Mahabat Khanji III, decided to join his state with Pakistan. On 17 August 1947 congress leaders asked for a cabinet meeting to deal with the situation, but before that, they were called by Lord Mountbatten, which changed everything. Sardar Patel was in favor of military action against Junagarh, but Mountbatten said, its a trap by Jinnah to create a road map to acquire Kashmir (if the Indian government would say that Junagarh is Hindu majority and its Muslim leader can’t decide to join with Pakistan, they would ask how can the Hindu ruler with the majority Muslim population of Kashmir decide not to join Pakistan). This canceled the military action to Junagarh and decided to increase Blockade and also sent B. P. Menon to inquire and know the person behind the uprisings of Junagarh. (the Nawab himself or his Diwan Shah Nawaz Bhutto was the grandfather of Ex. Prime Minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto) B. P. Menon unsuccessfully tried to meet Nawab, and return to Delhi but on his way, he was able to convince two small Jageer’s of Junagarh, the Mangalore, and the Babdhiya Badh in return nawab sent his army and forced them to cancel the Instrument of Accession with India.
As decided by Prime Minister Nehru On 24 September blockade of Junagarh was started. On 27 September 1947, there was a meeting with Mountbatten, he suggested going for United Nations because this act could lead to a war between India and Pakistan, which was one of their hidden interests called retreating colonial power. Indian leaders did not accept the suggestion of Mountbatten. Junagarh was blockade by the Indian army and its people were also revolting against nawab’s decision, which frightens nawab, and, he ran to Karachi. Now all power to rule was with his Diwan Shah Nawaz Bhutto who called for help from Jinnah which was not responded by hi, so on 7 November 1947 Shah Nawaz Bhutto asked to join with India. In February 1948 Indian government conducted a referendum which was in India’s favor.
Hyderabad’s Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan (one of the richest people in the world), announced that he will not join India at any cost, he was supported by Kashim Razmi. November 1947 Kashim Razmi came to Delhi to threaten Sardar Patel, but he had committed several atrocities, (communal riots, murders, and rapes) government of Hyderabad constituted a committed which inquire and come to know that he was a criminal. Kasim Razmi’ views were Hindus will not have any political power and be under Muslim rule, and which took a communal stand.
India with very difficulty was able to sign a standstill agreement with Hyderabad, which means the status quo will be maintained for one year. Although, Hyderabad refuse to sign the Instrument of accession, and also acting against India such as it credited 20 crore rupee to Pakistan and also exchange of arms from Pakistan. The Indian army was involved in the war with Pakistan in Kashmir and Hyderabad knew that army will not turn towards it. Prime Minister of Hyderabad Layak Ali moves towards Delhi to meet Nehru and Patel. On 22 April 1948, he wrote a letter to Lord Mountbatten and said that the relation between Hyderabad’s Nizam and its population is their internal matters, and asked not to interfere.
To solve this situation on 13 June 1948, Mountbatten convinced the Indian government to provide some special status of own rule, an own army of 20,000 and Indian army could enter the boundary only on the condition of Internal emergency in Hyderabad. When the Indian government allowed them with special status Nizam changed his demand for independent status for Hyderabad.
Which gives no other options to Prime Minister Nehru besides military action. Layak Ali also threatening to take this matter to United Nations. On 10 September 1948, Sardar Patel wrote a letter to Hyderabad’s Nawab with the last option to accept India’s rule, which was not accepted by him. Now, the Indian army enters the boundary of Hyderabad and attacked on 13 September 1948 and started Operation caterpillar or Operation Polo or Police action. After combat of 5 days, on 17 September 1948 Nizam Usman Ali approach Hyderabad radio and declare their surrender and also accepted to sign the Instrument of accession.
The Supreme court of India has delivered its judgment for the Shaheen bagh Protest. The Supreme court said that the protestors who are voicing their grievances against the government because of the government bill have every right to protest legitimately. (right to protest is a fundamental right) But the people who are moving from one place to another for the job, school, colleges or business, their life or rights are getting violated due to ongoing protest, so protestors can express their concern only in the designated area that which is chosen by the administration. You have the right to descend but not have the right to create a nuisance.
The supreme court dismissed the review petition filed by 12 activists against its verdict. Supreme court said, right to protest can’t take place any time and, anywhere, the protests which are spontaneous or instantaneous and, happening because of some particular issues are allowed but protest running for a longer period, occupying a public place, and violating rights of others section of people are not allowed or allowed in a chosen place only.
Rights of protestors: Protestors don’t want to block a particular premise, but they are doing it because their grievances are not addressed by the executives or by the governments on a timely basis. There had been cases when charges have been framed against protestors, they have been arrested, so these people were also the suffers. What wrong supreme court is doing:
Any protest related to Farm Bill or CAA if the government or supreme court have taken the case and assertively deliver the judgment, in such a scenario all these protests would not come up. So, a major blunder is a judicial apathy or judicial procrastination.
The Supreme court is mediating with the protestors instead of delivering the judgment, which is beyond their real job.
Constitution gives power to the supreme court to act as the last expectation of people. However, if it is not acting as right umpire, maybe favoring government or delaying judgment, called abusive judicial review.
Whenever a constitution is amended according to the procedure as given by the constitution and is also complying with all the given rules and regulations and procedurally it is upright, but if it is not well on the substantive side it is called Unconstitutionalconstitutional amendment doctrine. Government has all rights to pass an amendment to the constitution and at the same time supreme court also has the right to declare that a particular bill is unconstitutional. And when the supreme court is not acting as right umpire and not calling this process unconstitutional or allowing anti-democratic projects of the government, this is called the abusive judicial review.
Judicial precedence, case of Himat Lal K. Shah vs Commissioner of Police, 1972 supreme court has said that the freedom of assembly is an essential element of a democratic system. Supreme court not considered this verdict of itself in the shaheen bagh case of Delhi.
In case the radicalization, protest, grievance are not addressed we require fair litigation means, where all the parties are given a fair hearing and justice is to deliver as soon as possible because: “Justice delayed is justice denied.” In the public inquiry system, in case the government comes to know about the protest, the government will try to short out the grievances of protesters. All the concerns of protestors will be included or improved in the particular bill.
Procedure followed by legislatures for amendments
The Indian Constitution is partly flexible and partly rigid or organic or having a living tree approach. Indian constitution can be amended by two means, one is through the judiciary by prescribing something to protect the fundamental rights of citizens (the supreme court is the guarantor of fundamental rights of citizens under Article 32), for example, the basic structure of the constitution is an innovation of judiciary, and another one is through legislative action (parliament has every right to amend the constitution) by introducing and then passing a bill in parliament. The provisions related to it are enshrined under Article 368 of Part XX of the Indian Constitution. The Constitution provides three ways for amendment:
By a simple majority of the Parliament, (50% +1 of the members present and voting) includes matters such as admission or establishment of new states, the formation of new states and alteration of areas, boundaries or names of existing states, allowances, privileges, and so on of the president, the governors, the Speakers, judges, etc.
Amendment by a special majority of the Parliament, the majority (that is, more than 50 percent) of the total membership of each House and a majority of two-thirds of the members of each House present and voting, at third reading) includes the matters related to fundamental rights and DPSPs and others.
By a special majority of the Parliament with the ratification by half of the total states– the provisions of the Constitution which are related to the federal structure of the polity can be amended by a special majority of the Parliament and also with the consent of half of the state legislatures by a simple majority. It includes topics such as the election of the president and its manner, supreme court and high courts, seventh schedule, etc.
Shaheen bagh protest was happened against Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019
The Bill “Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019” amends the Citizenship Act, 1955, and seeks to make foreign illegal migrants or refugees of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, and Christian religious communities coming from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan eligible for Indian citizenship. In other words, the Bill intends to make it easier for non-Muslim immigrants from India’s three Muslim-majority neighbors to become citizens of India. An illegal immigrant is a foreigner who either enters India illegally, i.e., without valid travel documents, like a visa and passport, or enters India legally, but stays beyond the period permitted in their travel documents. An illegal migrant can be prosecuted in India and deported or imprisoned under the Foreigners Act, 1946 and the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920.
In 2015 and 2016, the central government issued two notifications exempting Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis, and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, who arrived in India on or before December 31, 2014, from provisions of the 1946 and the 1920 Acts. This implies that these groups of illegal migrants will not be deported or imprisoned for being in India without valid documents.
Citizenship can be acquired in two ways,one is “Jus Soli” commonly referred to as birthright citizenship, is the right of citizenship to anyone born in the territory of a state, this system is followed by the USA and India until 2003, and other is “Jus Sanguinis” is a principle by which citizenship is determined or acquired by the nationality or ethnicity of one or both parents., irrespective of the location of childbirth) this system was followed by India after 2003.
In India, citizenship is regulated by the Citizenship Act, 1955, which specifies that citizenship may be acquired in India through five methods – by birth in India, by descent (parents), through registration, by naturalization (extended residence in India), and by incorporation of the territory into India. What changes do this act will introduce:
Persons shall be deemed to be citizens of India from the date of their entry into India. All legal proceedings against them in respect of their illegal migration or citizenship will be closed.
The Bill reduces the period of acquiring citizenship by naturalization (A person can acquire citizenship by naturalization if he/she is ordinarily resident of India for 12 years) for such group of persons from six years to five years.
One of the qualifications is that the person must have resided in India or been in central government service for the last 12 months and at least 11 years of the preceding 14 years.
What are the issues related to the above described act:
Article 14 guarantees equality to all persons, including citizens and foreigners. The act provides differential treatment to illegal migrants based on:
Country of origin, (it provide citizenship only to migrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan)
Religion(it is excluding the Muslim and jews community) Ahmadiya Muslims are also facing persecution in Pakistan, Tamil Eelams in Sri-Lanka, and the murder of atheists in Bangladesh and Rohingya’s of Myanmar are also minority community, it is unclear why illegal migrants from only six specified religious minorities have been included in the Bill, which is against the secular nature of our constitution.
Date of entry into India, differential treatment of migrants based on their date of entry into India, i.e., whether they entered India before or after December 31, 2014.
Place of residence in India,it excludes illegal migrants residing in areas covered by the Sixth Schedule (the purpose behind the enactment of the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution was to aid in the development of tribal areas through autonomous councils while protecting the indigenous population in these areas from exploitation and preserving their distinct social customs), that is, notified tribal areas and also excludes the Inner Line Permit areas, i.e., Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, and Nagaland. Once an illegal migrant residing in these areas acquires citizenship, he would be subject to the same restrictions in these areas, as apply to other Indian citizens. Therefore, it is unclear why the Bill excludes illegal migrants residing in these areas.
Above described issues are the reason for the protest, which were not considered by the government.
Migrants may increase competition for the government or private jobs, and may also contribute in mixing their culture to the indigenous people may negatively affect to culture, language, resources of the region and marginalize the indigenous people in social, economic, and political aspects. To deal with the same politicians from the North-Eastern region were meeting with the union government to protect the integrity of the tribal regions. Inner line Permit (ILP) is of two types, one is for travel, and the other is for staying in the region for a prescribed time period. After this Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019 state governments bring additional areas under ILP, to exclude new citizens under the amended act.
Priya Ramani (journalist) filled allegations of sexual harassments against the then Union Minister MJ Akbar, for sexually harassing her during a job interview. In return MJ Akbar filed a criminal defamation case against her in Delhi court. In the background of this case, let’s understand what is criminal defamation?
Defamation is the oral or written communication of a false statement about another that unjustly harms their reputation. Any defamation can be challenged in court but within a prescribed limit.
IPC section 44, speaks about “Injury,” the word “injury” denotes any harm whatever illegally caused to any person, in body, mind, reputation or property, the violation of reputation is called defamation. Defamation can be civil defamation and criminal defamation. Civil defamation is when person has filled a case, that is negatively affecting the reputation of related person in society, he could ask for the compensation or damages. The person who tried to breach the reputation of any person will pay for compensations. This comes under “Law of thoughts,” provides the judgement on the basis of precedence of court.
A civil case has to follow The Limitation Act, 1963, that prescribes a particular time period during which a right can be enforced in court of law, ordinarily this limitation act is applicable in civil cases such as property disputes, violation of contraction or tort which is not going against society or state but is an individual dispute. Law will only assist those who are vigilant and aware of rights and approached court within the time limit. I am providing time limit of some cases according to law:
3 years for a suit relating to accounts, contracts, declarations, decrees, suits relating to movable property, recovery of law suit under a contract etc.
12 years for suits relating to possession of immovable property and 30 years for mortgaged property
One year for suit relating to torts
3 years for compensation in certain cases
30 to 90 days in case of appeals under Civil Procedure Code and Criminal Procedure Code.
IPC section 499 is related to Defamation, whoever, by words either spoken or intended to be read, or by signs or by visible representations, makes or publishes any imputation concerning any person intending to harm, or knowing or having reason to believe that such imputation will harm, the reputation of such person. For eg- If person writes a letter personally, person feels offended but he/she can’t filled defamation. However, a criminal defamation, can be filled when the letter is open in public forum by any mean, and harming the reputation of person or its family or its company.
Criminal cases, which are against the society or state such as person has committed a heinous crime of murder or rape. For criminal cases there is limitation prescribes in CrPc acts, but there is an exception if after 10 years person got an new evidence then only the case could be reopened or registered or accepted by the court. But the laws are little different for rape cases as they most happened and less reported…..
In rape cases women also have right to put there grievance before any platform of her choice even decade after the incident.
The women’s right to speak up about her violation which is not restricted by the passage of time.
Right of reputation can’t be protected at the cost of the rights of life and dignity as guaranteed under Article 21 of the constitution in such a case, balance is required. When right to life hold the primary position, right to reputation become secondary. By saying this Delhi Court abide by the spirit of “Vishakha Guidelines” by upholding the the right to violence free and safe work place.
When the court of law approved defamation case, section 500 of IPC comes to picture and person can be put behind the bars for up to 2 years with or without fine, if found guilty. These criminal defamation cases could be compoundable in nature, means when compromise between the the victim and offender can be established and it is less serious in nature. If it happens, the victim could drop the cases against the offender, but it should be by bonafide act not forced intent.
Violated right to freedom of speech and expression, and also violate the freedom of press. For example, press has found out something against any famous person which is against the society, and can also harm the reputation of related person. It is required to be published, but that famous personality can fill a case against him/her. (press wanted it to be completely removed)
Freedom of speech is important but at the same time the reputation of person is also important, we need to maintain a balance between freedom of speech and reputation.
The condition of half population of the world always depended on different challenges, responsibilities, philosophies, ideologies of the time which affect society and its norms. Today let’s have a look at these changes, we will start from Indus Valley Civilization,we found shreds of evidence of Mother goddess as well as Pashupati seal but there is no clear evidence of society being matriarchal or patriarchal. The Vedic period (golden age for women) provides equality and freedom, words like “Ardhangini”, “Kanyasraddhas”, Maitri puja” (for the blessing of getting a learned and capable daughter) were widely practiced. Girls were educated as boys (Gosha, Apala, Lopamudra, Indrani, Maitreyi, and Gargi are some known names). They were involved in political affairs (in sabha and samithi), they could wear the sacred thread, and practice brahmacharya (later monopolized by boys). They could own property, choose a partner and even marriage was not mandatory, widow remarriage was popular called “Niyoga.” In the Later Vedicperiod division of work to control more people was introduced, the hereditary setting of positions, and caste system were introduced. And it denied land ownership, equal religious rights to women and, gradually snatched the rights of Vedic studies, all this happened especially around the Buddhist era.
In Gupta period women’s position started deteriorating with the prevalent dowry, no property rights, no widow remarriage, and even basic freedom was curtailed. Rajputclans contributed most to women’s condition negatively, at this time women were the reason for many wars and their protection was additional responsibility. It was the society with the lowest sex ratio, even lower than Turks and Mughals. Sati, Johar, Pardah, and forced marriage were very common even women were sold and purchased as commodities. Medieval Era (worst phase for women) was the time of Islamic invasion, they took unmarried girls and sell them as sex slaves, and prevalence of parda system, polygamy, dowry, child marriage, sati, Jauhar, etc. Most women were uneducated and there most of life were confined to homes. We witness Little improvement during the Mughal period, as women contributed in agricultural fields, still, their importance was as child-bearer of society with no individuality. There was a high mortality rate due to malnutrition, frequent pregnancy, and death during birth due to a lack of techniques. There was a shortage of women which introduce bride price (new social custom), remarriages were also legitimatized. However, in the British period, leaders of the time tried for many socio-political reform-led changes, and finally, after the independence constitution has provided many rights to women, efforts are still needed.
Today’s women is strong and continuously moving towards heights, society is also moving towards equality. The Constitution of India guarantees to all Indian women equality (Article 14), no discrimination by the State (Article 15(1)), equality of opportunity (Article 16), and equal pay for equal work (Article 39(d)). In addition, it allows special provisions to be made by the State in favor of women and children (Article 15(3)), renounces practices derogatory to the dignity of women (Article 51(A) (e)), and also allows for provisions to be made by the State for securing just and humane conditions of work and for maternity relief (Article 42).
It is an irony that, a country where religious and cultural traditions keep women in high esteem, and women are worshiped in the form of many deities, atrocities against them are on the rise. According to 1992-93 figures, only 9.2% of the households in India were headed by females. However, approximately 35% of the households below the poverty line were found to be headed by females.
Let’s see the definition of Dr. Amartya Sen on gender inequality according to him, there is anti-female bias in cultural, social, and behavioral forms of society. Gender disparity is not one affliction but a multitude of many problems. sometimes there is no significant inequality in one sphere but great inequality in another. Evidence is visible in Japan there is no gender inequality in Nutrition, education, health care but great inequality in politics, administration, and business. According to him, there are different types of gender inequality:
Survival inequality- High women mortality rate, Low sex ratio which is against the scientific average, as there is birth of 106 girls on 100 boys and the concept of “missing women.”
Natality inequality- preference for boy child that disturbs the sex ratio of society and trigger crimes related to women.
Unequal facilities- education, politics, business, employment and promotion (boys are preferred)
Ownership inequality- to own share in parents property
Unequal sharing of household benefits (if house is having two cars mostly expensive and sporty car will be driven by guy) and house chores (a social norm that women should cook in house)
Domestic violence and physical victimization, alcoholism is often associated with violence against women in India, many women groups launched antiliquor campaigns in Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh and other states. Many Indian Muslim women have questioned the fundamental leaders’ interpretation of women’s rights under the Shariat law and have criticized the triple talaq system. It could be Physical injury, Sexual assault and emotional abuse.
Challenges of Indian women, according to his study
Society prefer birth of sons and neglect daughter, couples produce till they achieve desired number of boys. Economic survey call it “Son-meta preference”, it produce “unwanted girls”, and their number is nearly 21 million, they are also neglected in food and education. Parents keen to get their daughters married quickly to reduce there burden, which led to early marriage then to early pregnancy that obstruct education and career and also bad for health. Doctors also refuse to abort the baby without the consent of parents or spouses, however, no such requirement is necessary according to law.
Health and hygiene there is successive economic services due to lack of toilets in rural area, women hold their food and water intake to avoid untimely defecation results to malnutrition and anemia. They are also considered impure during menstruation, temple entry, worshipping, and generally confined to a corner of house.
Crimes within and outside home are widespread such as domestic violence, dowry, harassment by in-laws if unable to produce a male child. 70-80 percent of Indian women face sexual harassment and raps (Nirbhaya, 2012 and many more) India report 88 rape cases daily still 90% cases are unreported. Muslim women were also facing social boundations and problems like triple talaq, nikah halala, khatana etc.
Glass ceiling in job and politics, patriarchal mindset in political and corporate sector create a glass ceiling and very few able to reach to top leadership positions, we could see only 1 women Prime Minister in last 70 years of independence. There was long period when women were not allowed to serve in permanent commission positions such as fighter pilots in airforce, navy and army. To encourage them to leadership at political position, ushering of necessary legal reforms and fast & harsher punishment for rape, and reservation could also be provided.
Empowerment and Population Kerala’s education is nearly 90% and less then 2 TFR (total fertility rate, total children a women produce during her fertility period), UP, Bihar have 55% of education and more than 3 TFR due to widespread illiteracy. Females are not aware of family planning, no financial independence to assert reproductive rights. People produce more children as economic resource to help in domestic, construction and begging work. However, more educated can earn more and studies also tell that educated can earn better, marry later, and have less children. An educated and aware girl could make herself financially independent, and could also prevent her against wrong. United Nations plan SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) number 5 require India to empower all women & achieve gender equality. Country need to change the mindset and attitude to popularize widow remarriage, mass media and active participation of social and religious organizations together with government. Religious teachers, government, famous personalities, media can set examples and encourage commoners. Money based incentive should be avoided (could be miss used), high old age pension to couples having only daughter can work. Without proper participation of half population, world could not achieve it’s full potential.
The reason behind the above challenges are:
Women continue to be vulnerable to these crimes because of: Non-Retaliation,Absence of laws addressing their rights.
Ignorance of the existing statutes, Societal attitude, stigma and conditioning also made women vulnerable to domestic violence and these are the main factors for under-reporting of cases.
This set of circumstances ensured that a majority of women preferred to suffer in silence, not out of choice but of compulsion.
There is practice of sex-specific abortions, (problem is on demand side not on supply side) which affect CSR. (Child Sex Ratio, defined as the number of females per 1000 males in the age group 0–6 years) Economic prosperity and low CSR level are not related (Haryana and Punjab are rich, Gujrat and Maharashtra are middle, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are poor states, but all have low CSR level. India’s sex ratio in 1991 was 945, in 2001 it was 927, in 2011 it was 918. (Hindu- 913, Muslim- 943, Sikh- 828, Christian- 953, Buddhist- 933 and Rural- 929, Urban- 905)
An study published by Jean Dreze and Reetika Khera established a norm that crime rate are high where sex ratio is low. Low sex ratio may not affect availability of brides, as people will start selecting younger brides, but increase crimes against women clearly visible in haryana and rajasthan. Country’s growth is also not connected to CSR as China is fastest growing country with 860 CSR. We can see clear divide between north east and south east states of India. Related crimes are honour killing, domestic violence and female infanticide.
Method to measure gender equality there are 3 dimensions (under that there are 17 indicators to measure) agency, attitude and outcome:
Agency- Women’s ability to make decision on reproduction, spending on self, on household and mobility and health.
Attitude- violence against women or wives, ideal number of preferred daughters against boys.
Outcomes- Sex ratio (son preference), female employment, choice of contraception, education level, age of marriage, age at first child, physical and sexual violence.
Women are contributing directly as teacher, wage labor, service sector, Agriculture, manufacturing, etc and now deciding to work outside also.
Still female labor participation is just 20% with only 35% illiteracy.
They contribute in Agriculture and Animal husbandry as manual labor, taking care of cattle’s and house hold chores.
Some more important topics are: cyber crime, pornography, sexual harassment at work places and equal wages.
Care economy: women take care of family, act as support system, center of family and also carrier of culture.
Source of education: they are closest to young children, they are first to introduce value, education, and atticates.
According to United Nations Development Programme index, Gender Inequality Index released in 2019 India’s MMR (maternal mortality rate, deaths due to complications from pregnancy or childbirth) is 174 per one lakh, adolescent birthrate (births to women aged 15-19, per 1,000 women) is 13.
Economic survey on gender equality- decline in violence, employment, education improved- Son preference- sex selective abortion and differential survival led to skewed sex ratio, leading to 63 million “missing women
As UN report World Population Prospects, 2019- India expected to cross China by 2027 (Empowering women can help control population)
Government focus on topics such as: reproduction rights, equal wage, development, demographic decline, sex ratio, low literacy rate, child marriage, domestic violence, dowry, eve tease, child rape victims.
Acts- Abolition of dowry, Abolition of child marriage, Natal commission for women, 1922 (reviewing laws and regulation for women)
Chipko andolan, Narmada bachao were women centred.
There are only 13% seats occupied by women in Indian parliament: with some numbered politicians are Sarojani Naidu, Indra Gandhi, Shila dixit and Sushma Swaraj (India is having reservation to women of 33% in local bodies only and no reservation at higher levels)
Reservation in representation, Odisha government is promoting Lok Sabha reservation and also gender just policies.
Empowerment includes the action of raising the status of women through education, raising awareness, literacy, and training and also give training related to self defense. Women’s empowerment is all about equipping and allowing women to make life-determining decisions through the different problems in society. Some scholars says Empowerment is the ‘process of existing power relation and gaining greater control over source of power.’ Women empowerment, introduce in women conference in 1985 at Nairobi (that defines redistribution of resources in favor of women). Indian government is also carrying out a project called Stree Swabhiman Project to create sustainable model to provide affordable sanitary products in rural India.
Parameters of women empowerment
Raising self-esteem and confidence to get equal wages, rights, freedom to move and travel, freedom to spend and enabling them to make informed choices. Government could play its role by ensuring enforcement of constitutional and legal provisions to safeguard women’s right.
Eliminate discrimination and all form of violence against women- Develop them as more aware individuals.
Building and strengthening partnership with civil society particularly women’s organizations
Building positive image in society, recognize there social, economical and political contribution and let them develop ability of critical thinking and foster decision making ability.
If all women participated in GDP, it will rise by 27%. However, workforce participation of female is decreasing from 35% in 1989 to 27% in 2014. (coronavirus time- 25%) To promote women entrepreneurship many schemes like Stand up India, Pradhan Mantri mudra Yojana and Mahila Electronic haat- marketing etc. SHG (under NABARD) emerged during late 1980 and 90s to address poverty and gender-based discrimination, maternity leaves are also increase from 12-26 weeks. Government is also trying to establish hostels for working women and allow access to credit for income generating activities that will gradually improve economic and social advancement of women. And MSME also provide trade related entrepreneurship assistance and development under TREAD.
To empower women, the government should create a national network of public, private, and NGOs to deliver reproductive and child health services for free such as contraceptive delivery services, gender sensitization training in schools, colleges, and other professional institutions. Open more child care centers for working women and ensure the availability of safe abortion care. Improve accessibility and quality of maternal and child health care services and also guardianship and custody of children and their maintenance. Develop health management and health package at all levels. Organize educational and empowerment programs to aware society and improve access to sanitation, drinking water, fuel, wood, and fodder. Promote experimentation and innovations in problems and programs to empower rural women.
How moment developed in India
First wave During national moment- mass mobilization
National conference for women in India, was established in 1923 and after then in 1927 All India women conferences and efforts were also made to empower women during non-corporation moment, civil dis-obedience and quit India moment etc.
That time they were fighting for just and equal society, learning to came out of house, and agitate for their and national rights.
Second wave from 1960s on-wards
There was resurgence of political activity
Many women of All India women conference, Young women Christian association, Self employed women association- SEWA were asking for equal wages and also attacking sources of society oppression.
Third wave was around 1970s
Organizations were fighting for domestic violence, unequal distribution of rights, employment.
1980s main focus area were development of women who were left behind, and India also going through problem of caste issue, and honor killing.
1990- main focus areas were work environment, daily survival, caste issue within gender issue, empowerment and increasing political participation (73&74 amendment- 33% reservation in local government) and awareness about gender rights.
There are many Organizations in India
All India women’s conference, 1927– it fight for monogamy, Inter community marriage, Legislative rights, adoption, divorce, etc (Kamla devi chatopadhyay and Vijay laxmi pandit are some famous names related to AIWC)
National federation of Indian women, 1954
National conference for women in India, 1923– to improve educational efforts for women and children and has expanded its scope to also tackle other women’s rights issues.
All India democratic women association, 1981
Young women Christian association, 1855– it works for the empowerment, leadership and rights of women, young women and girls in more than 100 countries
Centre for Health, Education, Training & Nutrition Awareness- CHETNA, 1984– it is working towards the taking care of health, nutrition of women, children and young people.
Self-Employed Women’s Association- SEWA, 1972- promotes the rights of low-income, independently employed female.
United Nations development fund for women, 1976
It provides financial and technical assistance to innovative approaches of women aimed at fostering empowerment and gender equality. Today the organization’s work touches the lives of women and girls in more than 100 countries. It help in acquiring knowledge, develop sense of self-worth, understand gender relation and the way they could be changed and challenge the ideology of male domination. Enable women to gain equal access and control over resources (material, human and intellectual).
Now is the time to have a look on governments efforts:
Pre-conception and Diagnostic Technique Act, 1974– to stop female foeticides and arrest the declining sex ratio in India
The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971– to provide for the termination of certain pregnancies upto 20 week for normal and 24 week for rape victims by registered Medical Practitioners. It also provide access to maternal care to safe abortions and contraceptives and create awareness for adolescent sexuality and prohibition of forced sterilizations.
Mission Parivar vikas, 2017– to accelerate access to high quality family planning choices based on information, reliable services and supplies within a rights-based framework. Improve access to contraceptives through delivering assured services, dovetailing with new promotional schemes, ensuring commodity security.
Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan, 2016- aims at boosting the health care facilities for pregnant women, especially the poor and the scheme also tries to protect pregnant ladies from infectious diseases for that they conduct free checkups on 9th of every month.
Pradhan Mantri Matritva Vandana Yojana, 2016– to financially support and ensure better nutrition to child and mother during after pregnancy, Rs 5000 are given to beneficiary in 3 installments.
Laqshya, 2017- will improve quality of care for pregnant women in labour room, maternity Operation Theatre and Obstetrics Intensive Care Units (ICUs) & High Dependency Units (HDUs).
National Nutrition Mission or Poshan Abhiyan, 2020- to improve the nutritional outcomes of adolescents, children, pregnant women and lactating mothers.
Stree Swabhiman, 2018- aim is to create sustainable model for providing adolescent girls and women an access to affordable sanitary products by leveraging Common Service Centres (CSCs).
Child and Adolescence Health
Vatsalya- Maatri Amrit Kosh, 2017- protect, promote and support breastfeeding and support to mothers through dedicated lactation counsellors. The project will act as the teaching, training and demonstration site for other milk banks to be established under the Ministry Of Health and Family Welfare.
Project Dhoop, 2018– urges schools to shift their morning assembly to noon time, mainly between 11 am and 1 pm to ensure maximum absorption of Vitamin D in students through natural sunlight
Mission Indradhanush, 2018- to ensure full immunization with all available vaccines for children up to two years of age and pregnant women.
Supreme Court rulings and other data
Triple Talaq case of Shayara Bano case, 2017 supreme court declare “Triple Talaq” unconstitutional and also make it cognizable and non-bailable offence under Muslim women bill, 2017. The supreme court also provide property rights to daughters by birth, allow temple (Sabarimala temple) entry to women of menstruating age.
Physical Molestation- under Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 (>16 yr) if heinous offence is done by under 18, person will be treated as adult. Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018- Increased punishment in rape of girl under 16 yr age.
The judgement dealt with the statutory scheme of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005. It has allowed women fighting domestic violence cases the right to reside in the ‘shared household’ even if her husband had no legal right to the house and the same was owned by the father-in-law or mother-in-law.
Least Reported Form of Cruel Behavior: The court noted that the domestic violence in India is rampant yet underreported. Women in India faced violence and discrimination in one form or the other in their various roles as daughter, sister, wife, mother, partner or single woman. The National Family Health Survey-4 (2015-16) (NFHS-4) suggests that 30% women in India in the age group of 15-49 have experienced physical violence.
As per the UN Women, globally in 2019-20, 243 million women and girls (aged 15-49) across the world have been subjected to sexual or physical violence by an intimate partner. Less than 40% of women who experience violence seeking help of any sort or reporting the crime.
Government should support with affirmative initiatives for eg reservations, may results to increasing female political participation and better responsiveness of states to crime against women and harassment. Availability of suitable jobs such as healthcare workers, and teachers. Both societal norms for behavior and the built environment affect a woman’s safety in public spaces. Knowledge of women’s issues might begin to make a shift in the way women are treated and respected in the society. While retaliation and rejecting the notion that it is okay to be inappropriately treated in public is perhaps a beginning, the journey is much longer. A crucial step is to generate more awareness about women’s safety issues in public spaces.
The behavior and attitudes of the society cannot be transformed overnight, but the built environment can be controlled and can be used as a medium for change. As a beginning we can start with creating favorable urban infrastructure, like proper lighting on the public places, safe and secure urban transportation, installing CCTV cameras at places thought to be prone to sexual violence etc. Setting up of specially designed courts (Fast Track Courts) for trying cases of violence against women.
Unlike the cases of sexual molestation registered in police stations, there is a large portion of women in India who are subjected to rape and other forms of sexual assault on a daily basis and still their cases go unnoticed. These women are the unfortunate wives who have to indulge in sexual intercourse with their husbands even if they don’t want. They don’t actually have a say in front of their husbands when it comes to sex, they have to comply with the needs and demands of their husbands.
“According to my judgment, the French Revolution and the doings of Napoleon opened the eyes of the world. The nations knew nothing before, and the people thought that kings were gods upon the earth and that they were bound to say that whatever they did was well done. Through this present change it is more difficult to rule the people.”
byT. Kolokotrones, one of the revolutionary fighters in the Greek war of independence
The French Revolution (1789–1799) had begun during the War of American Independence. It happened during the period of ideological, political, and social changes in the history of France and Europe. It underwent a radical change based on Enlightenment principles of republicanism, citizenship, and rights. These changes were achieved by violent turmoil, including executions and repression during the Reign of Terror, and warfare involving every major European power.
Earlier French society was Autocratic with the extravagant rulers, privileged nobles, clergy, landless peasants, unemployed workers with unequal taxation. In the 18th century, France was strong and fought many wars all over the world and, acquired many territories. However, the French monarchy was facing a crisis that leads to its destruction. As everything that happened in the world impacted other parts, the American revolution triggered the French Revolution, so let’s first read American Revolution.
In 1815- Defeat of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo, came a system called the Metternich system to restore imperialism via the Vienna convention.
The main reason for the revolution was the conflict between rulers and the common of French society. The French revolution is important because for the first time it focuses on individual rights- Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity for every person’s right to freedom and equal treatment. Let’s see the main causes of revolution…
It was an absolute Monarchy led by the Bourbon dynasty. Kings were very powerful as rights to them were given by Gods without any responsibilities towards citizens. It had also been practiced in India as Devam Priyashi in Ashoka times and Jille ilahi during Balban reign. Louis XIV and Louis XV were powerful kings and successfully able to centralize the political system and abandoned Representative Institution of France and Estate General. Society was facing rampant corruption, such as the prevalence of Letters de chachet by which an arrest warrant could have been issued against any citizen.
During the outbreak, Louis XVI was the king of France a man of mediocre intelligence, obstinate, and indifferent to the work of the government. He and his beautiful but empty-headed wife, Marie Antoinette squandered money on festivities and showered favors and pensions upon their friends. The state always faced financial troubles for keeping huge armies and waging wars. Finally, it brought the state to bankruptcy. Government offices were also monopolized by aristocrats and nobles. (So here you can see there was the structural fault in France)
French society was divided into three estates and two were privileged. First, were the Clergy people related to the catholic church were 1% but owned about 15 percent of the total land of France, they denied the enlightenment idea. They controlled the educational system, poor relief, hospital provision, and had extensive powers of censorship, and were also exempted from taxes! and even have rights to levy taxes, first was Tithe that was 10% of a person’s income and the second was sin letters. Taxed money was used to run schools and public functions. That contributed to the feudal burden and poverty of society.
The second class was nobility who occupy most of the administrative and high-ranking positions and were also exempted from taxes! They were 3% of population and owned about 20 percent of the total resources of France. They enjoy hereditary privileges like Gentry of the sword, Gentry of the hat, etc. They considered engaging in trade or manufacturing or doing any work against their dignity. The life of the nobility was extravagant and luxurious. There were, of course, poorer sections in these two top estates. They were discontented and blamed the richer members of their class for their misery.
The rest of the people of France were called the Third Estate. It was an only unprivileged class that pays taxes equal to 50% of income. They were about 97 percent of the total population which was again divided with many differences in wealth and style of living. The plight of the tenants and share-croppers was worse. Forced labor was prevalent in society. Workers who lived in cities were trade people, apprentices, laborers, and domestic workers. The revolution was fought by the educated middle class or the bourgeoisie were writers, doctors, judges, lawyers, teachers, civil servants, merchants, bankers, and manufacturers.
Ideological developments or Age of Reason: Christianity had taught that man was born to suffer. The French revolutionary philosophers asserted that man was born to be happy. They either denied the existence of God or ignored Him. In place of God, they asserted the doctrine of Nature and the need to understand its laws.
The first people to face the brunt of the French philosophers were clergy. Series of scientific advancements since the Renaissance campaigned against the clergy. Voltaire, one of the most famous French writers of the time, though not an atheist, believed that all religions were absurd and contrary to reason. They believed that man’s destiny lay in this world rather than in heaven. Writings attacking religion fed the fires of revolution because the Church gave support to the autocratic monarchy and the old order as he mentioned in his book Age of Louis XIV. The French economists believed in Laissez-faire, a person must be left free to manage his property in the way he thinks best. Like American revolutionaries before them, the physiocrats said that taxes should have been imposed only with the consent of whom they were levied.
The philosopher-writer, Montesquieu, thought about the kind of government that is best suited to man and outlined the principles of constitutional monarchy. However, it was Jean Jacques Rousseau who asserted the doctrine of popular sovereignty and democracy. He said, ‘Man is born free, yet everywhere he is in chains.’ He talked of the ‘state of nature’ when a man was free and said that freedom was lost following the emergence of property. He recognized property in modern societies as a necessary evil. Rousseau’s theories also contained a principle written in the American Declaration of Independence: no political system can maintain itself without the consent of the governed.
France was continuously waging war resulted in unmanageable national debt. The government was bound to increase the burden on the third class, and the inequitable system of taxation made it worse. France was spending 3/4th expense on defense. American war and the Lavish life of the king negatively contributed. The third class was unable to pay the taxes due to widespread famine, which pushed them to poverty, and intentional starvation, malnutrition, and the likelihood of disease and death. Flawed taxation policies also affected the local trade, led to the emergence of Bread prices, and Bread riots.
All these economic reasons were forcing the king to tax the nobles.
In the time between 1780-1789, the ruler was weak, the country was on the verge of bankruptcy with no income. Charles-Alexandre de Calonne was appointed as Finance minister, he called a session of the special council. This special council was constituted by members of Estate I and Estate II and the proposal of the finance minister was to tax Estate I and Estate II. He was very determined that that was the only way to deal with the situation. However, as everyone could think, the proposal was declined and Finance Minister was also dismissed.
As the situation persisted, the King appointed Étienne Charles de Loménie de Brienne his new finance minister. Brienne again sent the same proposal to the special council was again got rejected. He then sent the proposal to parliament which was also constituted by members of Estate I and Estate II (hereditary nobles) that advised to send it to Estate General. Estate general was disbanded in 1614, but nobles wanted to curb power of ruler by reviving the old system. (in 1787 agriculture crisis and in 1788 bad harvest led to bread riots, inflation, unemployment act as trigger for revolution) Estate general was comprised of 300 members from estate I, 285 members from estate II, and 621 members of estate III. All estate were provided with 1 vote each. During voting estate III demanded doubling the representation of the Third Estate (Necker accepted the demand), joint seating, and one vote for each person. (not accepted) Members of upper classes cancelled the meeting and locked the assembly hall as were not ready to abide by the request.
Abbe Sieyes awakened people by ‘Sieyès’ famous pamphlet Qu’est-ce que le tiers état? and encouraged all to join. (to join one should reject all privileges) On June 17, the Third Estate claimed to represent 96 percent of the nation’s population and formally adopted the title of National Assembly; three days later, they met in a nearby indoor tennis court and took the so-called Tennis Court Oath (serment du jeu de paume), vowed not to disperse until constitutional reform achieved.
On October 5, 1789, the people of Paris, mainly working women, marched on Versailles. The women were responding to their anger at the harsh economic situations they had to face such as bread shortages while the King and his court held banquets on October 1, 1789. They were also demanding an end to Royalist efforts to block the National Assembly. It pushed King and his administration to move to Paris to address poverty. On October 6, 1789, 20,000 National Guards, the King, and the royal family moved from Versailles to Paris thus legitimized the National Assembly.
On 27 June 1789 National assembly get recognition and as a result, Feudalism, Serfdom, privilege’s system abolished and the Church tax (tithe)removed.
On 9 July 1789 National assembly converted itself to the constituent assembly. Still, there was no solution to the economic crisis. (bread riots, unemployment) To solve the situation King appointed another finance minister Jacques Turgot, who advised the king to reduce spending, was removed. A new finance minister Jacques Necker (influential speaker in national assembly) was appointed, he again advised to tax the privileged class, was removed. Jacques Necker was compiled by the members of the National assembly….. Triggered Riots, anarchy, and widespread looting.
The mob soon had the support of the French Guard, including arms and trained soldiers, because the royal leadership essentially abandoned the city. The King and his military supporters backed down, at least for the time being. Lafayette famous for also fighting in the American Revolutionary War took up command of the National Guard at Paris. Jean-Sylvain Bailly, (president of the Assembly at the time of the Tennis Court Oath) became the city’s mayor under a new governmental structure known as the commune.
Attack on Fort Bastille on 14 July 1789 (a national holiday in France) National assembly soon joined by the guards. They surrounded the Bastille, a state prison, and they broke open the doors, freeing all the prisoners. The fall of the Bastille symbolized the fall of autocracy. After the fall of the Bastille, the revolt spread to other towns and cities and finally into the countryside. On 26 August the National Assembly adopted the famous Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen. (also called the death certificate to the old system) It specified the equality of all men before the law, eligibility of all citizens for all pubic offices, freedom from arrest or punishment without proven cause, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press. Most important of all, to the middle class, was an equitable distribution of the burdens of taxation and rights of private property. The three-terms Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity were gifted to the world.
In 1791 France became a constitutional monarchy with its first written constitution, king lost his powers but still had a suspension veto and the ability to appoint ministers. That veto provided the right to suspend any bill of the national assembly.
In the same year, in October the separation of power, rule of law, and popular sovereignty were imposed.
In 1789 the war of the first coalition (Spain, Portugal, Holland, England, Austria, Prussia, Sardinia) was fought, it was the first attempt by European monarchies to defeat the French republic. The coalition invited by the French king was defeated by the French people. King and Queen were held responsible for treason and crimes against the state and guillotined.
The Legislative Assembly was replaced by the National Convention, which proclaimed the abolition of the monarchy and the establishment of the French republic.
National Convention (1792-1795)
Following the king’s execution, war with various European powers and intense divisions within the National Convention ushered the French Revolution into its most violent and turbulent phase.
In 1792, New system was established that is called the National Convention. Its members were decided by French men over the age of 25. France was a republic now, males were provided the right to vote and hold offices. Women were not provided right to vote.
Calling for administrative and political purges, a low fixed price for bread, and a limitation of the electoral franchise to “sans-culottes” alone.
There were two groups in French society, Girondists and Montagnards with the above described believes. Montagnards wanted to capture the power and centralize, a group immerged from them was radical called Jacobins, believing in direct democracy, tame to power.
During this period France was attacked by various powers and was defended by Jacobins. In June 1793, the Jacobins seized control of the National Convention from the more moderate Girondins and instituted a series of radical measures, including the establishment of a new calendar and the eradication of Christianity.
Fearing that the Revolution was in danger, took strong measures to crush forces inimical to the Revolution. In 14 months, some 17,000 people, including those who were innocent, were tried and executed. Some people have called it the “Reign of Terror“.
Robespierre (all people executed on his orders) dominated the draconian Committee of Public Safety until his own execution on July 28, 1794. He was executed due to fear of increasing absolutism in governance which officially ended the national convention.
The Directory (1795-1799)
On August 22, 1795, the National Convention, composed largely of Girondins who had survived the Reign of Terror, approved a new constitution that created France’s first bicameral legislature. Executive power would lie in the hands of a five-membered Directory (Directoire) appointed by parliament. Royalists and Jacobins protested the new regime but were swiftly silenced by the army.
They restricted voting rights and tried to stabilize the French economy. The state was continuously in attack from surrounding European powers to capture the power and restore the monarchy.
The directory was weak, Jacobin revolutionaries were also trying to capture power, there was environment of anarchy in France led to the rise of Napoleon, who was soon to declare himself Emperor of the French Republic.
The Directory’s four years in power were riddled with financial crises, popular discontent, inefficiency, and above all, political corruption. By the late 1790s, the directors relied almost entirely on the military to maintain their authority
That strengthens the military and allowed Napoleon Bonaparte to organize a military coup and establish a new form of government that is called the consulate in 1799. European powers (Britain, Russia, and Austria) were continuously attacking France to get rid of Napoleon.
From 1792 to 1815, France was engaged in continuous war with European powers. Some historians have termed it as an international civil war because it was fought between revolutionary France and countries upholding the old order. However, until Napoleon became emperor, almost every enlightened person in the world sympathized with the French Revolution.
Napoleon was called as “the child as well as destroyer of revolution.” His only objective was “Glory of France,” he was supported by monarchy because only strongmen could handle the situation, middle class had supported because he bring stability and economic progress in society and peasants supported him because he promised them for the land rights. He is also called as “Architect of Modern Europe.” After Napoleon seized power, France recovered the territories she had lost and defeated Austria in 1805, Prussia in 1806, and Russia in 1807. However, on the sea, the French could not score against the stronger British navy.
Finally, an alliance of almost all Europe defeated France at Leipzig in 1813. These allied forces later occupied Paris, and Napoleon was defeated. His attempt at recovery was foiled at the Battle of Waterloo in June 1815.
The peace settlement, which involved all of Europe, took place at the Congress of Vienna. After the defeat of Napoleon, the old ruling dynasty of France was restored to power. However, within a few years, in 1830, there was another outbreak of the revolution. In 1848, the monarchy was again overthrown though it soon reappeared. Finally, in 1871, the Republic was again proclaimed.
Administrative reforms: He established strong and stable French state, centralized the administration, also established central secretariat. He also curbed the liberty of people to establish law and order and to establish equality he allowed only merit based appointments and centralized the education to mould students thoughts by written syllabus. He also established French Universities, military schools and also boost the industrial revolution.
Judicial reforms: In 1804 Napoleon code the civil, trade and commerce related laws known as Napoleon Code (one code for France). He established rule of law and inspired judicial system all over world.
Economic reforms: He nationalized the banks (bank of France), promoted free trade and uniform tax policy and also constructed roads and bridges.
Religious reforms: He adopted secular policy and signed an agreement with pope to be loyal to France and paid regular salary.
Consequences of the Revolution
Impact on France
End of Monarchy and establishment of Republican government, constitutional government with no divine rights.
Under the Jacobin constitution, all people were given the right to vote (equal political, and social rights) and the right of insurrection. It was the first genuinely democratic constitution in history. The peasants got their lands. The government abolished slavery in the French colonies and became torch bearer of humanity by three terms: Liberty, Equality and Fraternity.
Power of church was reduced with no special privileges to tax (dime) and tried to establish the religious freedom. There lands were confiscated. Priest were force to take the oath to be loyal to the nation and state would pay salary to them.
Many administrative and Judicial reforms: Reorganization after revolution, divided France to 83 departments then to 374 cants (districts) then to 44,000 communes. (Democracy at three levels and Napoleon’s codification of laws)
Education and social welfare programs that had traditionally been provided by the Catholic Church declined dramatically with the Revolution’s attack. Decimal and metric systems were first introduced in 1795 and have been adopted by much of the world.
The French Revolution gave theterm ‘nation’ is not the territory that the people belonging to it inhabit but the people themselves. France was not merely the territories known as France but the ‘French people’. It united French people behind the army which consisted of revolutionary citizens against Europe.
Nation is sovereign, means the people constituting the nation are the source of all power and authority. There cannot be any rulers above the people, only a republic in which the government derives its authority from the people and is answerable to the people. It is interesting to remember that when Napoleon became emperor he called himself the ‘Emperor of the French Republic’. Such was the strength of the idea of people’s sovereignty.
Impact on England & Europe
England initially welcomed the changes, because it would bring democracy in France. However, after prevalence of anarchy it suppresses the influenced anarchy in England.
England supported anti-revolutionary activities in France results in economic crisis in England. Start of Ideological changes (social and political rights) for parliamentary reforms.
Encouraged revolutionary activities in Ireland (against Britain), Poland. (against Russia) It United the kings of Europe to fought anti-revolutionary wars.
Impact of French Revolution on the World
It had been a world-shaking event. For years to come its direct influence was felt in many parts of the world. It inspired revolutionary movements in almost every country of Europe and in South and Central America.
The French soldiers, wherever they went, carried with them ideas of liberty and equality shaking the old feudal order. They destroyed serfdom in areas which came under their occupation and modernized the systems of administration.
Under Napoleon, the French had become conquerors instead of liberators. The countries which organized popular resistance against the French occupation carried out reforms in their social and political system. The leading powers of Europe did not succeed in restoring the old order either in France or in the countries that the Revolution had reached.
Modernization: The French Revolution originated the idea that ancien regimes should be “modernized” according to the principles of a rational state. Modernization extended to the military, the administrative system, and other aspects of French life, with effective results. The very idea of modernity can be traced to the revolution.
“Wherever possible we need to cooperate, wherever possible we need to compete”
by Simon and Schuster In her new book “This Brave New World: India, China, and the United States”
China’s location is very strategic it is the largest, faster-growing economy in the world. In this global world, every nation is connected and affect one another in political, economic, social, and environmental spheres.
China got the Indian help in acquiring the position of being a permanent member of the United Nations. Now blocking India’s every step. (be it UN reforms, or notifying Azar a global terrorist, India’s membership to NSG) It has border disputes, water disputes, trade disputes, issues related to Dalai Lama, Tibetan issues, Pakistan issues, and many more. It is also the 7th largest export destination for India, and India is its 24th largest exporter. (with the export of diamond, copper, iron ore, organic chemicals, and cotton yarn)
When every nation was trying to deal with an unprecedented disaster called Coronavirus, China was trying to strengthen its political power over the territories of other nations. Its illegal entry to Vietnam and Malaysian water and also the capture of Pangong Tso lake, Nakula lake, and Depsang point in India, Galwan river valley, Hotspring region.
Reasons for the current standouts are revoking of article 370 revoke, India’s increasing closeness to the United States of America, India increasing its military capability in the region by constructing Darbuk-Shyok-Daulat Beg Oldie (DSDBO) road joining Leh to the Karakoram and a Bailey Bridge on the road. It will be an alternate path through the Sasser pass (part of the silk road).
Indian forces conducted a daring counter preemptive operation at the south bank of Pangong Tso lake. Indian army along with special frontier forces (special force of India’s external agency i.e. RAW) manage to occupy several strategic areas in the region, these tactical operations were carried out in the Chusul sector. During this combat Spangur Gap, Rechin La, and Rezang La and were occupied which gave an advantageous position to India, especially a garrison located at Moldo.
China was also continuously failing to commit the border agreements signed between both nations. There are three Border agreements between India and China to deal with such a scenario:
In the 1993 Agreement on the maintenance of peace and Tranquility along LAC under this agreement, both countries agreed not to overstep each other’s perception of Line of Actual Control. (because both have a different view on the alignment of borders). Pull back troops if any caution is issued by another side in case of any accidental manifest. And to maintain a minimum level of forces along borders with minimum heavy artillery’s gun, missiles, fighter jets, etc.
In 1996 Confidence Building Measure was signed to promote mandated forces to exercise self-restraint in any incursion and clashes. To take-up diplomatic consultation along with constant talks between senior military commanders to immediately disengage from the standoff. The agreement also prohibits the opening of heavy fires on each other and holding large military exercises near LAC.
In 2013 Border defense corporation agreement was signed to not follow or trail patrolling parties of each other if they accidentally cross the LAC.
So, now both nations are looking forward for disengagements after many higher level talks at the ground level. Initial focus is on the north and south bank of Pangong Tso lake. Both countries will also remove any temporary or permanent structure established in last few months. This applies only to Pangong Tso lake not other friction points like Depsang point, Galwan river valley, Hotspring region.
The current disengagements will directly depend on the willingness of China to follow its commitments on ground.
India and China are members of some common world groupings such as G20, Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, and East Asia Summit.
India and China are neighbors that share history, trade relations since ancient times via the silk road, also share cultural history (transfer of Buddhism and martial arts). The modern-day political concept of Mao considers Ladakh, Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan, and Arunachal to belong to China. This concept is called the “5 finger concept.”
Here is the timeline:-
1914- Shimla convention, MacMohan line decided as the border between Tibet and China. Tibet was recognized as an autonomous region, Twang and other Tibetan areas were coded to imperial British. China follows a “stapled visa” visa policy for the people of Arunachal. Generally, on going abroad, immigration officer put a stamp on the passport so that it can be known that why are you visiting that country. But in case of Stapled Visa, the stamp is put on an additional paper instead of the passport of the traveler.
1951- India recognizes Tibet as an integral part of China was acquired by it in 1950.
1954- China and India signed the “Panchsheel agreement.”
1959- India provided asylum to Dalai lama, again fired the emotions between nations.
1962- Indo-china war, China captured the Aksai chin region that is still in their control. For India, it is connecting gateway to central Asia, and for China, it connects Xinxinag province to the Tibet area. Johnson Line was drawn in 1965, and Macartney Macdonald line in 1989 shows Aksai chin an integral part of Jammu and Kashmir.
1975- India-China border is silent with no bullet since 1975. The last bullet fired at Tulung La pass killed one Indian soldier.
1980- Relations between the nations normalize again by pursuing highly independent foreign policies.
1988- Rajiv Gandhi the prime minister, visited China to further strengthened relations.
1998- India conducted Pokhran II (the nuclear test), which again deteriorated the relations.
1999- Both nations tried hard and successfully able to restore the relations by diplomatic ties.
2003- Vajpayee visited china and during this visit, Sikkim was recognized as an integral part of India.
Panchsheel agreement: Non-interference in others internal affairs and respect for each other’s territorial unity integrity and sovereignty” to maintain peace, Nehru in 1954 concluded with China: which became the foundation of relationships with different nations. Its principles-
Mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity
Non-interference in each other’s internal affairs
Equality and mutual benefit, and
Steps to resolve border dispute
We have seen the cause of border dispute and now is the time to see the steps taken by various governments:-
1988-Rajiv Gandhi’s government was successful in establishing a “Joint working group” to resolve border disputes.
2003- To solve border disputes “special representative mechanism” was established.
2013– A “Border defense cooperation agreement”was formed, both sides decided to maintain peace and tranquility with neither side shall use, threaten to use its military capability against the other side and should accept the principle of mutual and equal security. Some “Border meeting points” were established at Kibithoo of (Arunachal Pradesh), Spanngur Gap (Chushul, Ladakh), Bum-La (Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh), and Nathu-La (Sikkim), Daulat Beg Oldie (Ladakh) to discuss border-related issues.
Both countries have signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2002 on sharing of “Hydrological data on Yaluzangbu or Brahmaputra”. It is to share water level, water discharge, and rainfall data so that countries can better decide or plan before river-related disasters. Both also participate in “Expert level mechanism, 2006” and also discuss the issue related to trans border rivers. The last meeting was done on 12 and 13 June in 2019 was the 12th meeting held in Ahmedabad, India. China is planning to construct big dams and divert water from many rivers such as Brahmaputra, Satluj, and Indus. India is concern about the seismological sensitivity of the dams.
China is infamous for practicing unequal trade practices by target dumping of cheap products to destroy the domestic markets and low market access to Indian goods, prevalent Redtapism, low penetration for Indian pharma industries which can capture some market. Some more problems with trade related to China are:-
Developed Indian IT sector industries are not allowed in China.
Although India is trying to maintain good relations by providing E-Visa’s, china doesn’t reciprocate.
The language barrier and the trust deficit on Chinese people and goods.
India continuously fills an anti-dumping case to WTO against china which triggers Chinese anger.
To resolve these issues countries have taken steps like:
India trying to build infrastructure under the “Bharat Mala Project” that will encircle it via Gujrat, Rajasthan, Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttrakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Assam, Andhra Pradesh to ensure better connectivity.
Other steps such as diversification of trade basket (include more goods and services), strategic and commercial dialogue program were setup.
Rules: Customs (Administration of Rules of Origin under Trade Agreements) Rules, 2020 (will deals with Value Content Method, Change in Tariff Classification Method, and Process Rule Method)
Although India is also trying to establish the norm of “Rule of origin” means any product imported will provide the percent of raw material used from the respective nation. World Trade Organization follows non-preferential rules of origin with transparency, positive standards, administrative assessments, judicial review, etc.
Rule of origin will address distorted trade practice and ensure transparency, the effectiveness of trade agreements with administering the balance of payments. CPEC corridor.
China’s zero-sum mercantilism will be good for itself only.
China breaching sovereignty of nations
China’s army enters the boundary of Tibet in 1950 and captured. Tibet is having its geostrategic location is the world’s 3rd largest water repository very efficient to control the lower riparian nation. It is the provider of 90% of Chinese water due to the source of many rivers. Tibet is the source of 40% of Chinese mineral resources. The area is now extensively developed by China.
China also consider one free and independent nation to be its part that is “Taiwan“. It is Asia’s fifth largest economy, global leader in IT hardware industry, doing good in chip manufacturing. “New Southbound Policy” of Taiwan is to enhance connect with 18 nation including India. India export naphtha, cereals, cotton, organic chemicals, copper, aluminum, and food materials.
70 percent stake of the Hambantota port was leased to China Merchants Port Holdings Company Limited (CM Port) for 99 years for $1.12 billion under Debt trap diplomacy. (port is crucial in China’s OBOR project). New Delhi still remains wary of Beijing’s foray into what it calls the String of Pearl’s doctrine.
Pakistan ceded the Shaksgam valley, to China in 1963. Fifty years later, China announced the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) through this sensitive region as part of China’s new Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). This is reason India refuse to support BRI.
China’s also feeling difficulties
Uyghurs of China have formed a terror outfit “East Turkistan Islamic Movement. The USA and other Asian nations are hostile towards it, and boycotting China’s ambitious “One Belt One Road” initiative.
What both countries can choose for future
India can cooperate and learn from China in climate change, education, research & development, urbanization, and the development of smart cities project.India and China are jointly cooperating an initiative to assist underdeveloped nations such as providing Afghan diplomate training under the “China-India Plus” initiative provided in Foreign service institute in Delhi sought to extend to (Nepal, Maldives, Bhutan, Iran, andMyanmar). Countries should move away from land-based combat and try to involve in continuous meetings.
Made in China scheme as India’s Made in India is a scheme of high tech manufacturing. It is a scheme of Urbanization for 10 years will be completed in 2025. Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM corridor), both nations are cooperating.
Under the “One Belt One Road Initiative” three continents, Asia, Europe, and Africa are being connected via Rail, Road, Port, Satellite, Passageways, and Fiber optics. It involves Maritime Silk Road one is from China to Europe through the South China Sea and the other from the South China Sea to the Pacific sea. The aim of the Initiative is infrastructure development, financial corporation, and economic developments to increase the industrial capacity of export, increase people-to-people connections, and remove trade barriers.
Pygmy Hogs, who was once extended across the entire southern foothills of the Himalaya but now the species’ domain had shrunk to just one location in the world that is Manas National Park of Assam.
Scientific name:Porcula salvania
It is the smallest, rarest, and most highly specialized member of the pig family that cannot survive without a roof over its head all year round. It is one of the very few mammals that build its own home, or nest, complete with a ‘roof.’
It is an ‘indicator species’ as its presence reflects the health of its primary habitat, the tall, wet grasslands of the region.
It is an indicator of the management status of grassland habitats crucial for the survival of other endangered species. Species dependent on it are Indian Rhinoceros, Swamp Deer, Wild Buffalo, Hispid Hare, Bengal Florican.
Sucking Louse, a parasite that feeds only on Pygmy Hogs will also fall in the same risk category of critically endangered.
Wet grasslands also serve as buffer against floods in the monsoons, while maintaining high groundwater level in the dry season, thereby benefitting agriculture and the farming community that live on its fringes.
Although, it become extinct in the 1960s, was “re-discovered” with a small population in the Barnadi Wildlife Sanctuary.
Distribution: It is found along the southern Himalayan foothills from Uttar Pradesh to Assam, through Nepal’s terai areas and Bengal’s duars. However, now is restricted to only a single remnant population in Manas Wildlife Sanctuary and its buffer reserves.
Threat: loss of grasslands due to indiscriminate dry season burning of grass (farmers are suggested for the alternate year, block-wise burning) and human encroachment, livestock grazing, unsustainable thatch grass, and minor forest produce collection, flash floods caused by natural or artificial dams, and illegal trapping or snaring for bushmeat.
Flood control schemes as it disturbs the natural successions and the replacements of former grasslands by later stage communities.
Conservation status: It is protected and listed under ‘Schedule 1’ of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, and IUCN also recognizes it as ‘Critically Endangered’ in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Conservation steps: Pygmy Hogs Conservation Programme- In 1995, a breeding program was set up in collaboration with Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and MoEFCC, near Guwahati. The program was planned with six animals trapped in Manas by the Rare & Endangered Species Conservation Unit (RESCU) of Ecosystems-India.
This program follows a two-pronged action plan: conservation breeding of the animal against possible early extinction and re-introduction in selected sites, and habitat management.
Before transferring to the animals are trained, so they can better adjust to the wild environment.
Apart from the field signs of monitoring, some of them are radio-tracked by using a smaller, coin-sized implant inside their bodies.
To maximize genetic diversity, specific markings through micro-chips help to choose the ‘ideal’ pair. The same couple breeds every year, and after a few generations, with unrelated families.” SPARKS (Single Population Analysis and Record-Keeping Systems) is a program that stores information about the life history.
PMx (Population Management) program offers potential outcomes, like pairings, increasing generation length, etc.
Manas national park is that much important for our cute companion, let’s know something about it also…
Manas National Park, Assam
The Indian government added Kahitama Reserved Forest, the Kokilabari Reserved Forest, and the Panbari Reserved Forest in 1990 to form this beautiful National Park.
It is a biodiversity hotspot, part of the core zone of the 283,700 hectares which lies alongside the shifting river channels of the Manas River.
The Manas-Beki system is the major river system flowing through the National Park and joining the Brahmaputra river further downstream.
It has six national and international designations that are World Heritage Site, National Park, Tiger Reserve (core), Biosphere Reserve (national), Elephant Reserve (core), an Important Bird Area.
This park is provided with highest legal protection and strong legislative framework under the provisions of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and Indian Forest Act, 1927, and also under Assam Forest Regulation 1891.
It has also been titled as Biosphere Reserve under the Man & Biosphere Programme of UNESCO in 1989.
Indian scientists from the Zoological Society of London (ZCL), University College London (UCL), and an international conservation charity, have discovered a six color variant of the Golden Cat in the Dibang Valley of Arunachal Pradesh, which includes Tightly roasted, Cinnamon, Melanin, Gray, Golden, and Oscillate types.
Scientific name: Catopuma temminckii
It is a medium-sized wild cat native to the north-eastern Indian subcontinent.
Reproduction: They give birth in sheltered places from one to three kittens, who already possessing adult coat pattern after a gestation period of 78 to 80 days.
Behavior: They are territorial, solitary, diurnal can climb trees, hunt birds, hares, rodents, reptiles, and small ungulates. They are capable of bringing down prey much larger than themselves, such as domestic water buffalo calves.
Six color morphs arise from random genetic mutations and take hold in the population through natural selection. Above describe colors look like:
Dibang Valley hosts the world’s most diverse range of color morphs of a wild cat species ever reported in one site. These different colors of cats are beneficial for:
In understanding the evolutionary theory of color morphs
How quickly this species can adapt and evolve to changing environments
Improve insight into the resilience potential of the species to climate change or habitat degradation and destruction. Climate change is a reason for decreasing population of these species.
Also, help them capture different habitats at different elevations from wet tropical lowland forests to alpine scrubs.
Provide camouflage while preying on pheasants and rabbits.
Scientists suspect that the incident is motivated by competition with other big cats such as tigers and clouded leopards. Sadness in mountains of mist during nocturnal hunting. For example, this may mean that they are better hidden from their prey, making them more efficient hunters.
Dibang valley district is the largest district of Arunachal Pradesh with the lowest density of population in India, lies in the north-easternmost corner of Arunachal Pradesh.
Distribution: found across eastern Nepal through north-eastern India to Indonesia. Bhutan and China were known for the cinnamon and ocelot color (small to wild cat found in the Americas) of the golden cat.
It prefers forest habitats interspersed with rocky areas and inhabits dry deciduous, subtropical evergreen and tropical rainforests, temperate and subalpine forest in Sikkim’s.
India’s first ‘snow tigers’ was also spotted in the upper reaches of Dibang Valley.
It is listed as near threatened on the IUCN Red List of threatened species. Due to ecological importance, the Indian government has mentioned the cat in Schedule I of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972
Wild cats are also included in Appendix 1 of CITES.
Threat: The animal inhabits some of the fastest developing countries in the world, where habitat destruction, deforestation, declining prey base. In Sumatra, it has been killed in revenge for preying on poultry. In Southeast Asia and China, poaching for the illegal wildlife trade (greatest potential of maximum harm in minimal time)
A group of conservationists studying and camera-trapping leopards in the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary has captured an Indian grey wolf it will be its first-ever documentation in Chamarajanagar district. It indicates the presence of all four large canid species found in southern India (dhole, Indian wolf, jackal, and Bengal fox) in Chamarajanagar.
Scientific Name:Canis lupus pallipes
It is a subspecies of grey wolf that ranges from Southwest Asia to the Indian Subcontinent. They live in warmer conditions.
It is intermediate in size between the Tibetan and Arabian wolf and lacks the former’s luxuriant winter coat due to it living in warmer conditions.
It travels in smaller packs and is less vocal than other its variants. They are nocturnal and hunt from dusk to dawn
Description: It is of intermediate in size lies between the Tibetan and Arabian wolf, and lacks the former’s luxuriant winter coat due to its living in warmer conditions.
Distribution: It has a wide distribution range that extends from the Indian subcontinent to Israel. There are about 3,000 animals in India, some in captivity.
Mostly survives on grasslands, scrub forests, and rarely in dry deciduous forests.
In Karnataka, the wolf is found in isolated pockets in the drier areas, including Haveri, Koppal, Tumakuru, Raichur, and Ballari.
Conservation status: The IUCN Redlist listed it as a species of least concern. However, the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972 given the threats faced by the animal across India places it in Schedule I Part I. It is also in Appendix 1 of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
Threat: habitat loss and retaliatory killing, animal & humans for livestock depredation, depletion of prey species (like blackbuck, hare) due to livestock, and fragmented habitats that are too small for populations.