of the Supreme Court Justice DY Chandrachud The state government on Saturday said that irrespective of the electoral legitimacy of the government, every action or inaction of the state should be assessed in accordance with the Constitution. He also said that majoritarian tendencies should be questioned against the backdrop of ‘our constitutional promise’.
Justice Chandrachud said, “Abolition of dictatorship, curtailment of civil liberties, discrimination on grounds of sexism, casteism, religion or region is a sacred promise made to our forefathers who accepted India as a constitutional republic.”
He was speaking on the topic ‘Students as protectors of the Constitution’ at a program organized by Shikshan Prasar Mandali (SPM), a Maharashtra-based organization working in the field of education, on the 101st birth anniversary of his father Justice YV Chandrachud. Justice YV Chandrachud was the longest serving Chief Justice of India.
Justice Chandrachud said that India is in its 71st year as a constitutional republic. On many occasions it may be felt that the democracy of the country is no longer new and the need to study the constitutional history and engage with its framework is not that meaningful.
“However, it is important to recognize that in times of peace or crisis, every action or inaction of the state in conformity with the Constitution will have to be evaluated regardless of the electoral legitimacy of the government,” he said.
Justice Chandrachud said that India as a nation, without undue interference of the State, is united by the promise of certain commitments and rights like religious freedom, equality among individuals irrespective of gender, caste or religion, fundamental freedom of expression and movement. is. It is a permanent right to life and personal liberty.
“As and when majoritarian trends raise their heads, they should be questioned against the backdrop of our constitutional promise,” he said.
Justice Chandrachud remembered Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar and said that his first struggle was to get access to education, before starting the fight against casteism, patriarchy and oppressive Hindu practices.
Addressing the students of an educational institution run by the SPM, he said, “As a man belonging to an untouchable Dalit Mahar caste, Babasaheb struggled a lot to get access to primary education.”
Justice Chandrachud said, “His most important memories of schooling are those of humiliation and isolation, where he had to sit outside the classroom and study. It was ensured that he could not touch the water or notebook belonging to upper caste students.
He said that Ambedkar finally got 26 degrees and titles. He became one of the most highly educated Indians of his generation. He did not get education only for self-progress but he left his mark on the constitution on the strength of his transformative ability.
Justice Chandrachud observed that like Ambedkar, many revolutionaries in India and the world such as Savitribai Phule, Jyotiba Phule, Nelson Mandela and even Malala Yousafzai, through their liberation movements, initiated a revolutionary quest for education.
“These stories are useful and always a reminder that the privilege of education we have today is the fruit of the most daring struggles and represents the dreams of our ancestors,” he said.
Justice Chandrachud said that he firmly believes that students can play a vital role in initiating progressive politics and cultures by using their early years to question existing systems and hierarchies.