14 May, 2021

In Our Roots Are Our Rights

The global parameters of human rights, based on Western concepts, do not fit in the Indian context.

Photograph by Tribhuvan Tiwari
In Our Roots Are Our Rights

Nationalism is often viewed as contrary to liberalism in contemporary political and social narrative. Post-World War II global discussions on the emergence of nation states and the progress of political dispensations in ensuring guarantee of human rights assumed greater importance. The international human rights movement also gained currency at this time. The United Nations became the torch-bearer of such a movement. The UN Charter promised “inherent dignity” and “equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family”—this guarantee of dignity of life to every individual who is a global citizen transcends geographical boundaries of the nation states. The UN made it mandatory for every one of its missions and activities to uphold these human rights principles as “the foundation of freedom, justice, and peace in the world”.

Yet, at the global level, human rights as applicable by UN standards began to be measured through covenants and conventions within the parameters of the International Convention on the Protection of the...

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