Struggle for Justice & Human Rights Framework: Cases of Successful Protests in Eastern India

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 14:30
Location: Hörsaal 21 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Dipti SAHU, Lucknow University, India
The human rights movements in post independent India have been largely influenced by colonialism and western democracies. It made its presence felt especially in 1980s by social and political activists and attracted the support of marginalized sections of India. The issues of human rights centers on individual’s conflicting relationship with the state.  The Indian Protection of Human Rights Acts, 1993 says “human rights” means the rights relating to life, liberty, equality and dignity of the individual guaranteed by the constitution. Literature and empirical evidences suggest that unlike the west, human rights are constantly challenged by complexities of socio- political- cultural process.

The paper makes an attempt to analyse the historicity and dialectics of the conflicting relationship between the individual and the state and further emphasizes on the need to concentrate primarily on economic, social and cultural rights in the present age of globalization on an empirical basis. It also tries to articulate how the process of globalization facilitated the assertion of civil and political rights with the help of Indian middle class. The paper also makes an attempt to understand human rights movements in India from new social movement perspective.

 Against this backdrop, the paper articulates two successful people’s struggle of Odisha, one popularly known as Anti Missile movement, against the proposed National Missile Testing Range and the protest against establishment of POSCO steel plant It is about the prolonged resistance launched by the local people, its genesis, processes and consequences. These protest movements under have raised several collective issues related to right to livelihood, sustainability, ecology, disarmament and issues of civil society.