A lot has been written about corruption in Nigeria since independence. Even though the country tried to inculcate transparency and accountability through reformations, it seems to retreat to its past. With eclipsing free speech and failing legal machinery, corruption has only surged. Damilola Bajo describes the many instances of corruption in Nigeria and how they have affected democracy. In this commentary, she moves ahead with a solution-oriented approach to counter corruption, arguing how collective desire and change can propel effective policy implementation.
The Modi cabinet reshuffle occupied Indian media’s broadcast space for the whole of last week. While several attributed the new changes to a decisive step, some called it tokenism to undo recent fiascos. The recent reshuffle shows that governments with a significant majority in the Parliament have it easier. The same has been evident throughout PM Modi’s two terms. Jaibatruka Mohanta analysis the pattern of cabinet reshuffles in India in the light of the recent one.
Chernobyl, Fukushima Daiichi, and World War II events marked the worst nuclear disasters in world history. Yet, even after Chernobyl, many assumed that the world order was beginning to restrain its ignorance. And now, it could finally tame nuclear or atomic energy to incapacitate further destruction. But Fukushima hit right at the world in a few years. In the first article of a two-part series, Ankita Ravikumar writes how ‘nuclear energy’ became elementary for nation-states to exhibit power. She does so by highlighting the worst nuclear disasters and locates the liability.
In Part II of a three-part series, the article talks about the infiltration of colonial morals and how the anglicisation of selective religious text polluted the connotation of same-sex love in India. Thus, further inscribing British orthodox morality into the constitution and elsewhere. Deepanshi Mehrotra writes how S. 377 was implemented as a tool of disciplining desire. And even after independence was used for harassment by the police and society alike.
Do short tenures affect the legacy of the Chief Justice of India? Many suggest that the inconsistent terms of CJIs present a predicament to the functioning of the collegium and the Supreme Court. While several CJIs had impactful but short tenures, irregular terms for CJIs in office could delay judicial reform. Jaibatruka Mohanta traces the scattered legacy of Chief Justice of India from before Independence and understands the transition that came after.
Recently, a series of tweets and Instagram stories made headlines as they alleged instances of sexual abuse in Chennai’s well-known school. These allegations raised several crucial questions, including how schools serve as breeding grounds for child sexual harassment and how teachers are often complicit as abusers by making sexual advances at students. Detailing the instances that followed an uproar on social media, Surabhi KC explains the sequence of events adding to the larger narrative of child sexual abuse in schools.
To find the meaning of queer as we know of it today, and locating its beginning is nearly impossible. Like language, the purpose of ‘queer’ and its significance has only evolved. From an idea to identify and finally becoming activism, ‘queer’ is not limited to how one defines themselves. It extends beyond the gender and sexuality paradigm; it presents marginalisation and change. Srinithi Sreepathy traces the beginning of the Stonewall movement, the making of pride and the evolution of the word ‘queer’. She also looks at the significance of the word in the Indian context.
This article is part of a three-article series that will discuss the history of homosexuality in India in pre-colonial and colonial times and the decriminalisation of Section 377. Historians often reference back to the pre-colonial times when speaking about same-sex love and its prevalence in mythology, vernacular literature and religious text. But many oppose homosexuality based on the reasoning that it subscribes to a western form of living. Deepanshi Mehrotra, in this article, as part of three-article series, will debunk the ‘western idealogy’ argument, countering literary and graphic evidence smothered across India’s monuments and scriptures.
Experts throughout the world are optimistic about the boom of blockchain technology in Africa. The high praise is also because emerging blockchain-based solutions are being customised for developing countries and are touted to increase the quality of life in such countries.
While there are concerns regarding its efficacy and cautions to security, the latter is often ruled out for its immunity against data theft, and the former often goes unaddressed. Damilola Bajo explains the importance of blockchain, highlighting the advantages and limitations of integrating blockchain technology in Africa.
Journalist Siddique Kappan case recently reignited after his video asserting his belief in the Indian Constitution and Judiciary went viral. Siddiquie Kappan got arrested while he was on his way to report the Hathras rape case in Uttar Pradesh. He is among many small and independent journalists who are wrongfully incarcerated under draconian laws like the Unlawful (Activities) Prevention Act and sedition. The latter is, in fact, a colonial leftover.
Both these laws reverse the burden of proof and are worded to warrant human rights violations. Shubhra Agarwal, a Lawctopus Writers Club member, breaks down the case with its timeline. She also explains how the case defies legal protections, abusing excessive state power to silence voices of dissent.
In the past two months, the electoral violence in West Bengal stepped beyond its usual timeline. The expanse of such violence is considered commonplace in West Bengal. The history of violence in West Bengal had far-reaching implications on the politics of the State. Once justified in the name of revolution and upheaval, the violence has acquired a looming permanence in the State. Jaibatruka Mohanta presents a nuanced reading of the incidents of violence that followed election results in West Bengal, meeting it halfway with an analysis of the historical events that lead to the present scenario.
From 2001 to Pride month 2021, it’s only unfortunate that we bring you an article on ‘conversion therapy’, a brutal practice that continues to be in force in the country and worldwide. Deepanshi Mehrotra uncovers the history of conversion therapy and its abuses on LGBTQIA+ persons. Needless to say, the only thing abnormal about homosexuality is its unacceptance in Indian society.
Since its inclusion, first, under rule 49-o of Conduct of Elections Rules 1961, and again as a symbolic implementation in 2013, NOTA was idealised as a powerful tool to exercise the right to reject. Overestimating its potential, the Supreme Court in its NOTA judgment became too short-sighted. While the top Court included NOTA as a working option, it simultaneously made NOTA vote incompetent. Disha Pathak details the inefficacy of NOTA and its limited potential to bring any real transformation.
Recently, the Supreme Court struck down the claim to Maratha reservation, citing that the reservation ceiling in a state cannot exceed 50 per cent. The Apex Court stated that neither there were extraordinary circumstances to grant Maratha reservation nor the states had the power to decide Socially and Educationally Backward Classes. Aeshita Singh explains the nitty-gritty of the Maratha reservation judgment, citing its faultlines and implications.
Earlier in April this year, the U.S. Navy Seventh Fleet passaged Indian waters, accusing India of ‘excessive maritime claims’. Despite the presence of UNCLOS, the United States tends to present itself as the high cop. Ankita Ravikumar dives deep into the conflict, the role of UNCLOS and the reasons for repeated interventions by the U.S.
Three staples for constructing detention centres in India include law, state and ‘illegal migrants’. These, along with bricks, cement and mortar, build suffocated cubicles, cramped by many who fail to prove their citizenship. In trying to establish their linkages with the state and in prooving bloodlines on paper, many succumbed to legal and administrative machinery.
Deepanshi Mehrotra tells the story of violations and confinement and an increasing number of detention centres in India despite COVID-19.
During the second wave of COVID-19 in India, we are witnessing more than just the government’s failure. We are witnessing apathy; we are witnessing black marketing and hoarding of essential medical supplies. Despite the urgent demand for oxygen and life-saving drugs, India is choking under the weight of bureaucracy and sluggish governance. Jaibatruka Mohanta details the despair of the desperate and the pitiful state of India.
Even after Section 377 was decriminalised in India, homosexuality continues to be a taboo subject. And the LGBTQIA+ community continues to face social ostracization, one that is offered from within and outside the family. The present commentary by Disha Pathak briefly discusses society’s obsolete lens on homosexuality and the judiciaries’ own flaws in realising the 2018 Judgement.
The Indian Courts have often attributed death sentence to the collective conscience and its state of shock. Although many countries have abolished capital punishment, India seems to be rooting for its continuance. Srinithi Sreepathy explains what Emile Durkheim meant by ‘collective conscience’, and if the phrase has attained a newer meaning in Indian courts.