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Politics and Religion in India: Minorities


  • Mariella Sica



This paper is addressing the minority issue in India. In the introduction we give a definition of minority, which is not asserted by a numerical criteria, but rather by the share of power and freedoms. We proceed giving an overlook of the largely diverse Indian state, which for its pluralistic composition has to face socioeconomic and religious challenges. Some legal guarantees are provided by the Constitution, although they are not fully respected in practice. Rejecting Indian secularism’s criticisms. Then we analyze the model of Indian secularism, consisting in the separation between State and religious, though taking into account the delicate balance of multiple social interests. The positivistic view of Bhargava suggests us that the Indian conception is better equipped at political and moral level to deal with deep religious diversity. The conclusion suggests that Indian democracy has a great potential, even with its cracks and odds still to be solved, and at least in absolute terms has much to teach to other proclaimed secular countries in the Western world. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2012

Suggested Citation

  • Mariella Sica, 2012. "Politics and Religion in India: Minorities," Transition Studies Review, Springer;Central Eastern European University Network (CEEUN), vol. 19(1), pages 131-138, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:trstrv:v:19:y:2012:i:1:p:131-138
    DOI: 10.1007/s11300-012-0224-8

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kaletski, Elizabeth & Prakash, Nishith, 2016. "Does Political Reservation for Minorities Affect Child Labor? Evidence from India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 50-69.
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    More about this item


    Minorities; Multiculturalism; Secularity; Z10; Z12;

    JEL classification:

    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General
    • Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion


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