Rule of Law

An Analysis of the State of Rule of Law during Assam Movement in Assam, India

Abstract: 
Youth movement is a prominent feature of politics of Assam viewed as the most disruptive area of North-East India. Youth participation in various mass movements and their initiation of such struggles has been significant here. It has been viewed that every democratic movement in Assam seemed to be initiated by youth, which is evident from the colonial period. In the post independent era, youths are making a determined bid to change the existing society and polity of the state. Such movements have also toppled the state governments and at times forced governments to negotiate on issues involving policies affecting governance of the state. Such occurrences of youth movements in contemporary Assam center round democratic politics of India. Democratic politics involves a process of decision making that again involves popular participation. Participation of this kind would, of course, involve the principles of civil liberties and rule of law. Since youth movements have been a fact of history of the politics of Assam, there is a possibility that such movements might have affected the essential norms of democratic politics of the state. If we define democracy to include political participation, civil liberties and rule of law, it is necessary to examine how these features of democracy are affected by youth movement. This paper aims at examining how youth movement influences the democratic politics of Assam, particularly in the matter of rule of law. The researchable question we intend to examine is – does youth movement affect rule of law, the basic norm of democratic politics of the state? To facilitate the above, we plan to analyze the politics of the “Assam Movement” (1979-85) led by All Assam Students’ Union (AASU), the leading student union of Assam, for an enhanced understanding of consequences of youth movement for norms of democratic politics of the state.
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