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Policy Watch No. 18

Citizens and the State: Policing, Impunity, and the Rule of Law in India

In every nation, the police are a prominent representation of the state, backed by a profound constitutional and criminal justice architecture. The rule of law, a cornerstone of robust democracies, binds the triad of voters, elected representatives, and the state through legal frameworks. Beyond the fundamental question of for whom laws are drafted lies the critical role of law enforcement officers – the police machinery, and officers of the court – the judiciary. In this Policy Watch, Eklavya Vasudev, a legal scholar at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, and Thomas Blom Hansen, Professor and Department Chair of Anthropology at Stanford University, U.S., take a deep look at the dynamics between the citizens and the state in the context of the criminal justice system. Amidst recent reforms by the Union Government, the authors critique the unchanged, historically rooted design of the criminal justice system, which endows the police with extensive powers often disadvantageous to vulnerable groups. The suggested remedy lies in reshaping the police into a community-sensitive force, steadfast in upholding the rule of law.Keywords: India’s penal laws, IPC, CrPC, Judiciary, Police, Criminal justice system. Click here to download Policy Watch No.18 [PDF 737 KB]
Related Resources1. ARC Working Group Report on Police Administration, 1967.
(Convenor: S. Balakrishna Shetty, IP)2. National Police Commission Reports (1979-1981)3. India’s Criminal Laws4. The Police Act, 1861 and Model Police Act, 20065. Malimath Committee Report - 2003 6. Mooshahary Committee Report - 2005

Related Articles from The Hindu GroupThe Hindu1. Bhaumik, A. 2023. Revised criminal law bills: Key changes explained, The Hindu, Dec. 18.2. Bajpai, G.S. 2023. New Bills and a principled course for criminal law reforms, The Hindu, Aug. 17.3. Vij, R.K. 2023. An overhaul, the criminal law Bills, and the big picture, The Hindu, Sep. 09.Frontline4. Chandru, K. 2023. The Centre’s controversial makeover of crucial criminal codes can have far-reaching impacts, Frontline, Sep. 01.The Hindu BusinessLine5. Editorial, 2022. New criminal laws could have been conceived with more rigour, The Hindu BusinessLine, Sep. 01. 

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Interim Budget 2024-2025: Finance Minister's Speech and Related Documents

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the interim Budget 2024-2025 on February 1, 2024. Her Budget speech and related Budget Documents c

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‘India’s historically shaped pluralism not easy to dislodge; diversity always part of its landscape’: Rajeev Bhargava

India’s plural tradition, safeguarded by a constitutional commitment to a secular democracy, is going through challenging times. The founding ideals o

COVID-19 Compendium: Official Information on COVID-19 Released by India and the WHO [HTML and PDF]

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Indian Secularism: Ambedkar and the Chronicle of a Failure Foretold

As India steps into its 77thyear of Independence, it has moved a considerable distance from its lofty founding vision of ushering in a new

The Law of Sedition and India: An Evolutionary Overview

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Policy Report No. 27

Farmer Producer Companies: Preliminary Studies on Efficiency and Equity from Maharashtra

In recent years, the concept of Farmer Producer Company (FPC) has gained the attention of researchers. Though relatively new in India and still in an emerging phase in Maharashtra, these FPCs are being viewed as a possible replacement for the old cooperative model and taken the form of new movement. The formation of FPCs in the districts of Maharashtra began in 2015 under the Maharashtra Agricultural Competitiveness Project (MACP). In Osmanabad and Solapur districts of Maharashtra, FPCs have been in operation for the past three years. As FPCs gained the attention and participation of the farmers it becomes pertinent to study their formation and performance.  This Policy Report attempts to look at the FPCs in Solapur and Osmanabad districts of Maharashtra to ascertain the level of inclusiveness and participation of the various categories of farmers in the running of the company. The study points out that caste and family hierarchies continue to hold a grip on ownership patterns, albeit in the early days of the FPCs. However, it can be said that the FPCs have the potential to overcome the difficulties faced by the farmers in selling their produce directly in the conventional market arising out of rigid vertical coordination of the middlemen based on the experiences of the farmers with the producer company model.The Report also includes an analysis of the new policy on the FPCs and attempts to assess the differences between the old cooperative Act and new Farmer Producer Companies Act. [PDF 829 KB]

Background Note No.7

Public Policy and the Child in Tamil Nadu

The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy and UNICEF, Chennai, organised a Round Table on Public Policy and the Child in Tamil Nadu on September 02, 2017 (Saturday), at Kasturi Buildings, 859 & 860, Anna Salai, Chennai. The aim of the Round Table was to take stock of the extent to which the State’s policies have contributed to and shaped childhood. Covering the ages of 0 to 18 years, the discussions at the Round Table explored the relationship between the state and the child in Tamil Nadu, which is critical for the quality of life for children. Papers were invited from the participants at the Round Table on the following themes: 1. Policy and Fiscal Space in Tamil Nadu 2. Education and Health 3. The Disadvantaged Child, and 4. Social Spaces for the ChildThis Background Note contains the Concept Note and the 10 papers that were presented and discussed at the Round Table. Feedback and comments may please be sent to [email protected] Click here to download the Background Note [PDF 3.72 MB]