"I realise that some of my criticisms may be mistaken; but to refuse to criticize judgements for fear of being mistaken is to abandon criticism altogether... If any of my criticisms are found to be correct, the cause is served; and if any are found to be incorrect the very process of finding out my mistakes must lead to the discovery of the right reasons, or better reasons than I have been able to give, and the cause is served just as well."

-Mr. HM Seervai, Preface to the 1st ed., Constitutional Law of India.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


This EPW commentary on the perils of regionalism in the backdrop of recent Maharashtra imbroglio raises three major concerns.

1. The establishment of parallel government
2. Challenges to the federal character of the nation
3. The bearing of coalition government with decisive regional party participation

This commentary also integrates a touch of media criticism.

It is disquieting to find the responses of the Union Minister for Civil Aviation, Praful Patel of NCP hailing from the state and the validation given to it by the Congress Party. This aspect clearly highlights the pressure tactics regional parties play in coalition politics to swing the balance to their undue benefit.

The current incident is a severe blow to the federal nature of the nation where regional identities take on hostile masks. The nepotism of the Lalu Prasad condemnable though does not give justification for revving up regional factionalism. The action of Raj Thackeray is a sheer opportunism of a political bigot.

How legal system is going to react in the present situation will be the crucial aspect, since cases have been slapped on Thackeray. A proper investigation and prosecution will be the touchstone and rekindling of confidence of people in the legal system.

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