Make the Weekend Worth it: Read 5 Best Socio-legal Pieces by Academike

We’re Back! The week is finally ending, and it’s time you wind up and do everything that the weekend desires. And of course, by everything, we mean read!

This time we have lined up a bunch of varied yet nuanced pieces collated just for you. 

These 5 articles will make you think and probably help you chance upon an argument of your own. This one is special since they are Academike’s Editors’ Pick too. 

Consider these a month-end gift from us to you. Here you go!

Understanding the Historical and Constitutional Making of Right To Protest in India

In recent years, the right to protest in India has become a courageous exercise of upholding democracy and constitutional ideals. To protest then is not simply exercising one’s right. It is also an act of defiance, and a means to uphold other fundamental rights. 

A German-Jewish political theorist, Hannah Arendt, wrote that vita active or the life of action and speech are the basis of one’s political life. And only by speaking one can register themselves as a living and acting being. If Arendt were believed, then registering oneself through protest and speech is fundamental to being human and a political being.

Dhruv Vatsyayan and Arpit Saxena ask if the peaceful right to protest is indelible to other fundamental rights, then why does it face excessive executive action.  Dhruv and Arpit also trace the history of the right to protest in India in colonial and post-colonial times. Read the entire article here.

Addressing Critical Concerns: Mental Health and Juvenile Justice Act (2015)

Mental health and juvenile justice systems are isolated, this isolation moralises the subject. However, some studies have shown a direct association between convicted minors and mental health. 

Given how precarious mental health can be, all inmates at the juvenile detention centre must be treated with utmost care. Yet, the condition of such centres and cells have been deteriorating for quite some time. 

Mahenu Siddiqui addresses these concerns and draws a correlation between mental health and juvenile justice, giving recommendations for implementing the Juvenile Justice Act (2015).

Follow this link to read more.

Contesting Farm Laws 2020: What’s Wrong With FPTC Act and the Fall of Mandis?

The farm laws 2020 created quite a stir over the last year. Farmers from across Punjab and Haryana hurdled at Delhi NCT borders, and others rallied in their states, lending support to those sitting at the Tikri Border

But, while the protests silently loomed over the ends of Delhi, unweathered despite the pandemic, the farm laws and their issues are still unaddressed.  Though the Supreme Court stayed the implementation of the three farm laws, the negotiation hasn’t made much progress.

Amidst the relative silence from both ends, government and farmers, this article tries to reignite the discussion on what went wrong. Abhinash Ray writes on the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act to detail its provisions and demands of the small farmers.

Read this intriguing article to make sense of the farm laws and subsequent protests. Click here.

The Lost Dignity of the Dead: How To Recover Casualties of COVID-19?

This article recalls the second wave and the slew of deaths across India. 

As bodies piled one over the other, waiting to get cremated, the dignity of the dead got buried by systemic failure and lack of legislation in India. 

While those who suffered losses, including the caretakers, are trying to locate government accountability, several states are still fudging data. Hence, it’s essential to revisit and remind ourselves of the government failure amid rising cases, all of which has been conveniently brushed aside. 

During the second wave, death by the pandemic became banal, and Diksha Garg is writing to ask why it was so? She also asks how the dead will be assured dignity posthumously. Read here

How the Blasphemy Law in India abrogates freedom of OTT Platforms?

Section 295A, a variant of blasphemy law in India, has been subjected to criticism for its vague definition. Moreover, its use in recent years has been more political than religious, often curbing freedom for artists and content creators.

Now this abuse and its colonial shadow have extended to digital space. Often Section 295 A is used against content and content creators in the name of fickle ‘religious sentiments’. However, these curbs, in general, and Section 295A in particular, offer unnecessary censorship, devoiding the art and its value and neglecting the viewer’s discretion. 

Sahil Panchal argues against Section 295A, reasoning how it’s a version of Blasphemy law in India. He also argues that the same limits artistic freedom and is often dictated by political impulses.Read article here.

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