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HINDUTVA AND IDENTITY POLITICS
In December 1995, Justice J.S Verma had given a series of judgments in what are collectively known as “Hindutva cases” holding that pleas made using terms like Hinduism or Hindutva does not pertain to corrupt practice in violation of the Representation of People Act, 1951 (RPA) during an election campaign. It held that these terms do not refer to usage of religion to garner votes but simply a ‘way of life’. The judgment, however, clearly overlooked the meaning of RPA’s true objective. Recently, a seven judge Bench of Supreme Court presided by Chief Justice J.S Thakur, hearing arguments in two cases – Narayan Singh vs Sunderlal Patwa and Abhiram Singh vs C.D. Commachen to review the judgments rendered by Justice J.S Verma in December 1995. The father of Constitution, B.R Ambedkar was particular in ensuring the secular nature of Constitution and advocated that conduction of election should have nothing to do with religion or culture.

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