Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Ostrogorski paradox

The Nationalist Congress Party has indicated its displeasure over the proposed Prevention of Communal and Violence Protection Bill which has been close to the heart of Congress president Sonia Gandhi. Interestingly, several alliance partners supporting the Congress coalition government in the UPA government have opposed the Bill. The most vocal has been the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress. Some of the leaders representing the DMK and the National Conference (NC) have also expressed reservations to the Bill in its current form.

IMO: Such a bill may well be a good idea, but it would need to be drafted carefully and deal with local conditions, and indeed possible or contrived local conditions, carefully to reach a reasonable effect.

RR Patil (of Maharashtra) said, “If we go by presumptions that majority Hindus are the target in states like Gujarat or Maharashtra. Then we should not lose sight of the fact that in Kashmir the Hindus would be in minority. Or in several northeastern states, Christians would be in majority etc.”

Interestingly, the Assam Sentinal says "The Communal Violence Bill as suggested by the Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council is unacceptable and must be opposed" . In fact the Sentinal writes quite a good case to support its viewpoint. For example "Under (the Bill's) definition of “group”, in a State like Assam, by way of illustration, where about eight districts have already become Muslim majority, due to influx, the religious majority in those districts would continue to be minority at the State level, and hence would get all protection, though some of their members could be involved in inciting or engaging in communal hatred and violence in different forms against the Hindu community, who happen to be a majority in the State but minority in those eight districts".

IMO: Looked at on the broader scale, we also should perhaps consider the Ostrogorski paradox and related matters.


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