International Journal For Multidisciplinary Research

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Judiciary: The Protector of the Tribal Rights

Author(s) Pramod Kumar Sharma
Country India
Abstract Since its emergence after independence, the judiciary has played the role of protector of the Constitution. The framers of the Constitution have also made provision for the judiciary to discharge this role through various writs under Articles 32 and 226. To protect, promote and preserve the rights of the tribal communities various provisions are enacted in the Indian Constitution. The development of tools like Public Interest Litigation (PIL) by the judiciary in the late 70s has significantly contributed to the protection of public interests. In protecting the constitutional and fundamental rights of the helpless, deprived and displaced tribals, the judiciary has interpreted the constitution's right to equality under Article 14-18, right to liberty and livelihood under Article 19, right to life under Article 21, right to religious freedom under Article 25-28 etc. according to the times and circumstances. Through judicial activism and public interest litigation, the judiciary has provided justice to all the underprivileged, exploited, victims and poor of the country who did not have access to the courts. According to the 2011 census, there are about 8% tribal communities in the country. This community is not only uneducated but also an economically weaker section of the society. Most importantly, this tribal community is also the most affected by liberalisation and developmental works. Governments not only displace this community to exploit natural resources but in many cases neglect to allocate compensation. There are many cases where even after decades, the work of rehabilitation and resettlement has not been completed. In such cases, it is only due to the intervention of the judiciary that the deprived and displaced people can get justice. In many cases, after the decision of the judiciary, the development projects have been stopped and the rehabilitation works of the displaced people have been completed. Due to the socio-economic, cultural and political marginalisation of the tribal communities, the Judiciary has adopted a positive approach towards these people while delivering the judgement according to the provisions made in the constitution. In this research paper, I will look into the cases related to the tribals with non-tribals, civil society organisations, the state which are called in the context while dealing with the tensions and conflicts by the judiciary in its judgements in the tribal areas.
Keywords Judicial Activism, Public Interest Litigation, Rehabilitation and Resettlement, Compensation, Samta Judgement and Niyamgiri Judgement.
Published In Volume 6, Issue 1, January-February 2024
Published On 2024-02-11
Cite This Judiciary: The Protector of the Tribal Rights - Pramod Kumar Sharma - IJFMR Volume 6, Issue 1, January-February 2024. DOI 10.36948/ijfmr.2024.v06i01.13193
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