Category Archives: Democracy

“Our languages have survived tenaciously. We are truly a linguistic democracy. To keep our democracy alive, we have to keep our languages alive.” – Ganesh [G.N.] Devy (co-founder, People’s Linguistic Survey of India) quoted by Soutik Biswas in “The man who ‘discovered’ 780 Indian languages” (BBC News 27 (October 2017)
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-41718082
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=24320

“Sure — democracy, first articulated, is Greek in origin. Europe provided the lexicon for it and its components. But just because it did, does not mean the desire for democracy, the desire for human rights, does not exist in every single one of us.” – Melissa Chan in “How ‘Stolen Words’ Harm Democracy” (55 Voices for Democracy, 23 July 2021)
https://blog.lareviewofbooks.org/55-voices/55-voices-democracy-stolen-words-harm-democracy-melissa-chan/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=23343

“Development means nothing if it does not lead to human development in its broadest sense.” – Parvathy Menon in “At 90, C.T. Kurien – Scholar of Social Conscience – Is More Relevant Than Ever” (The Wire, 5 July 2021)
https://thewire.in/economy/ct-kurien-scholar-indian-economy
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?page_id=5208

“He who does not lead his life under the direction of others, who sets his own goal of life according to his own reasoning and decides for himself as to how and in what way life should be lead, is a free man.” – Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (who was more than the “drafter of the Constitution”), quoted in “Contested Freedom” (Journal of People’s Studies Volume 1, Issue 4 June 2016, Page iii)
https://www.academia.edu/28587897/JOURNAL_OF_PEOPLE_S_STUDIES_-_Volume_1_Issue_4
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=20996

“The highest court of judgement regarding social customs was the general hunt council to which the Santal tribes of a particular region gather together. [A]nybody could lodge a complaint against a decision of a village council or Pargana council, either disagreeing with or thinking that the decision made there was malafide. […] It was an exemplary institution of a direct democracy where for one night the final authority was the people themselves.” – Timotheas Hembrom in The Santal and the Biblical Creation Traditions: Anthropological & Theological Reflections (Ch. “Introduction to the Santals”, pp. 26-27)
https://adivaani.org/tag/santal/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=13041

“The first report on minority rights, made public in late August 1947, provided for reservation for Untouchables only. [O]ne member of the Assembly regretted that ‘the most needy, the most deserving group of adibasis [tribals] has been completely left out of the picture.’ The member was Jaipal Singh, himself an adivasi. […] To the tribals of Chotanagpur, he was their marang gomke, or ‘great leader’. In the Constituent Assembly he came to represent the tribals not just of his native plateau, but of all India. […] His first speech was made on 19 December 1946 when, in welcoming the Objectives Resolution, he provided a masterly summary of the adivasi case.” – India After Gandhi: The History of the World’s Largest Democracy by Ramachandra Guha (p. 115)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=15375

“There was a time when, in terms of freedom of press, India was in an enviable position among the developing nations. But that was 40 years ago.” – N. Ram (Director, The Hindu Publishing Group) in a webinar organised by Live Law on “Criminalising Journalism and Cinema” (The Hindu, 6 February 2021)
https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/todays-times-cant-be-exaggerated-as-emergency-n-ram/article33768798.ece
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=11721

“As a democracy, India has languished. […] On the Democracy Index’s global ranking, India dropped 10 places to 51: that it maintains even something of a place as a ‘flawed democracy’ has to do with the relatively smooth functioning of the election machinery, though the data shows the severe erosion of ‘civil liberties’”. – Vinay Lal (Professor of History & Asian American Studies, University of California, Los Angeles UCLA), in “Emergency in India, Faux and Real” (26 June 2020)
https://vinaylal.wordpress.com/2020/06/26/emergency-in-india-faux-and-real/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=25720

“In May [2020], the European Parliament Subcommittee on Human Rights wrote to Home Minister Amit Shah saying it was alarmed by the ‘intimidation and harassment of human rights defenders’ by the authorities.” – Analysis by Soutik Biswas in “Outrage as jailed Indian poet contracts Covid” (BBC News, 17 July 2020)
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-53441846
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=25922

“You can’t keep quiet on everything. At some point, if you disagree – it’s better to say it then rather than piling it up.” – Former IAS Officer Kannan Gopinathan (who resigned from service over ‘lack of freedom of expression’) in a special lecture on “Democracy: Institutions and Individuals” (Asian College of Journalism – ACJ, 2 September 2020)
http://acjnewsline.org/special-lecture-by-kannan-gopinathan-ex-ias-officer-and-activist-on-democracy-institutions-and-individuals/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=11721

“Populist leaders often polarise society and delegitimise the political opposition, often presenting them as enemies of the state or people. […] Electoral autocracies, according to V-Dem, are now present in 87 states that are home to 68% of the global population. Liberal democracies, the group says, are diminishing, and are home to only 14% of the people.” –  Report on democracy by Sweden-based V-Dem Institute noting India’s diminishing of freedom of expression, the media, and civil society; quoted by Soutik Biswas in “‘Electoral autocracy’: The downgrading of India’s democracy” (BBC News, 16 March 2021)
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-56393944
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=11721

“Unless people become citizens and not subjects under a patrimonial rule, the calamitous clouds of the pandemic portend a bleak future for Indian democracy as well.” – Nissim Mannathukkaren (Chair, International Development Studies, Dalhousie University, Canada) in “Social murder and the missing state” (The Hindu, 7 May 2021)
https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/social-murder-and-the-missing-state/article34502018.ece
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=20996

“Today, bamboo is liberated … The adivasi is not the enemy of the forests” – Union Minister

“Today, bamboo is liberated,” proclaimed Union Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh at a function here on Wednesday, where he handed over to Mendha’s community leader Devaji Tofa a transit pass that would allow the sale and … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Adivasi / Adibasi, Colonial policies, Community facilities, Crafts and visual arts, Democracy, Ecology and environment, Economy and development, Education and literacy, Figures, census and other statistics, Forest Rights Act (FRA), Gadchiroli, Government of India, Literature and bibliographies, Misconceptions, Nature and wildlife, Organizations, Press snippets, Quotes, Revival of traditions, Rural poverty, Success story | Comments Off on “Today, bamboo is liberated … The adivasi is not the enemy of the forests” – Union Minister

Video | Portraits of Dayamani Barla known as the “Iron Lady of Jharkhand”

Ballad of Resistance is a video portrait of indigenous tribal journalist and activist Dayamani Barla, her perseverance and tireless fight against corporations and the state machinery. The film follows how she, from a humble background became one of the pioneering … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Adivasi / Adibasi, Adverse inclusion, Democracy, Eastern region – Eastern Zonal Council, Economy and development, Government of India, Misconceptions, Modernity, Names and communities, Networking, Quotes, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Rural poverty, Storytelling, Success story, Video resources - external, Women | Tagged | Comments Off on Video | Portraits of Dayamani Barla known as the “Iron Lady of Jharkhand”

Proper coverage of “deprivation”: Ethical considerations for students of Indian journalism

Asian College of Journalism: Covering Deprivation During the second term, all students take a required course— the only one of its kind taught by a journalism school anywhere in the world — Covering Deprivation. “Deprivation” refers to the inability of … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Adverse inclusion, Childhood and children, Commentary, Democracy, Education and literacy, Figures, census and other statistics, Literature and bibliographies, Media portrayal, Misconceptions, Particularly vulnerable tribal group (PVTG), Press snippets, Quotes, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Rural poverty, Storytelling, Video resources - external | Comments Off on Proper coverage of “deprivation”: Ethical considerations for students of Indian journalism

“Democracy and caste system can’t go hand in hand”: Paying attention to the enforcement of India’s 1989 act to prevent the commission of offences of atrocities against members of SCs and STs (Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes)

Hardly anyone seems to have paid attention to India’s dismal showing at the UN Human Rights Council’s universal periodical review when the latter alleged that India is “all words, no action” on working against caste and related discrimination. The allegations … Continue reading

Posted in Adverse inclusion, Anthropology, Assimilation, Colonial policies, Commentary, Customs, De- and re-tribalisation, Democracy, Economy and development, Education and literacy, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Media portrayal, Modernity, Press snippets, Scheduled Tribe (ST), Women, Worship and rituals | Comments Off on “Democracy and caste system can’t go hand in hand”: Paying attention to the enforcement of India’s 1989 act to prevent the commission of offences of atrocities against members of SCs and STs (Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes)

An indigenous film industry for large indigenous populations: ‘Jhollywood’ tells the stories of modern Adivasis – Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam & Manipur

Jhollywood is calling Forget the faux tribals grunting in Raavan. Jharkhand has its own film industry, made by Adivasi filmmakers for Adivasi viewers, says G VISHNUIS BEERA Formula for a Jhollywood film: five songs, three fights, three romance scenes. Plus … Continue reading

Posted in Adivasi / Adibasi, De- and re-tribalisation, Democracy, Eastern region – Eastern Zonal Council, Film, Government of India, Languages and linguistic heritage, Media portrayal, Misconceptions, Modernity, Names and communities, Press snippets, Seven Sister States & Sikkim – North Eastern Council, Storytelling, Success story | Tagged | Comments Off on An indigenous film industry for large indigenous populations: ‘Jhollywood’ tells the stories of modern Adivasis – Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam & Manipur