Situating Modern Indian Secularism: A Constitutional Perspective

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The nature of secularism in India has been described as complex.  The meaning of the term itself has been controversial and, although it is enshrined in the constitution, not all are agreed on what it is, and what its function is in the modern Indian context.  This paper includes the development of the current secular state from the nineteenth century thoughts of Holyoake and his books, including Principles of Secularism, through to more contemporary thoughts of Indian writers and theorists, as well as those of others with interests in this area.  The development of the contemporary philosophical and legal underpinnings of secular government in general, and India in particular, are explained.   This paper seeks to provide an historical context to the secular ideal and speculate on its future in India.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Asian Yearbook of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
EditorsJavaid Rehman, Ayesha Shahid, Steve Foster
PublisherBrill Nijhoff
Number of pages29
ISBN (Electronic)9789004431768
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Publication series

NameThe Asian Yearbook of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
PublisherBrill Nijhoff

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law


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