The No Nonsense Guide to Minority Rights in South Asia is a practical primer on issues related to minority rights in South Asian countries. The ‘minority’ in these countries is typically characterized by non-domination and powerlessness, two major markers apart from language, culture, religion and ethnicity. Hence, while defining minorities and minority rights in the region, the book examines in detail the State's role in recognition, protection, and exclusion of minorities in the socio-political context. It explores the process of ‘minoritization’, and evaluates the weaknesses of constitutional and legal frameworks that have contributed to the insecure conditions of the minorities in the region.
By taking a rights-based approach, the book clearly develops an understanding that majoritarian and authoritarian policies have always got an upper hand throughout the history of nation-building in South Asia. While elaborating on such ‘politics of recognition and inequality’ and ‘modes of exclusion’, it goes on to explore the ethnic composition of each South Asian country-India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Bhutan. It presents a detailed account of the socio-economic inequality, religious and language discrimination, political under-representation and constitutional and legal oppression meted out to the minorities in these countries.
This book will be an important inclusion in the literature of Politics and International Relations, especially on Human Rights and Minority Rights. It will also be a useful guide for activists on minority rights to form strategies to counter oppression.
Chapter 4: Indigenous Peoples
Indigenous peoples are proponents and representatives of humanity's cultural diversity. Historically, however, indigenous peoples have been marginalized by dominant societies and have often faced assimilation and cultural genocide. Indigenous peoples have dynamic living cultures and seek their place in the modern world. They are not against development, but for too long they have been victims of development and now demand to be participants in—and benefit from—a development that is sustainable. (Magga 2006)
Uneasy Coexistence: Development Paradigm and Adivasi Deprivation
Indigenous peoples, from occupying most of the earth's ecosystems two centuries ago, today have legal rights to use about 6 per cent of the earth's territory. Around 300 million people, spread over 70 countries, belong to the world's indigenous groups. India alone has an indigenous ...