It has been observed that though the demands of regional movements may be legitimate but their methods and approaches are often conservative and traditional in nature, generally advocating status-quo in social issues. Critically discuss in context of India.
Regional movements occur as a result of heightened regionalism due to lack of services and deficit in fulfilment of aspirations.
- These movements can range from niche issues such as grant of statehood to social issues such as reservation.
- However they face the challenge of being conservative in outlook and thus require a more nuanced approach to handle them.
There are several examples of recent regional movements that portray traditional character and oppose social change, such as:
- Jat reservation agitation in Haryana – these were traditional de-Sanskritizing movements; aimed at accruing social demands for being backward. The modernity for economic empowerment through self sufficiency was lacking.
- Gurugram religious conflict movement – these show that how religious groups impose order rather than modernity.
- Upper caste Brahmin Movement in Uttar Pradesh – against dalits and aimed at institutionalizing status quo.
- Farmer’s movement – heavily oriented in Punjab and Haryana, opposed the reforms for modernization of agriculture.
Reasons behind opposition to modernity:
- Perceived harm to social Institutions such as Dalit Bhima Koregaon movement in Pune.
- Illiteracy leads to uninformed informed decision which fuels traditionalism.
- Informal pressure group character – thus, they have to rely on traditional identity of caste and religion to mobilize.
However they are a symptom rather than problem:
- Maratha son of soil movement shows that local employment has been unable to keep up.
- Reservation based movement show that there is a need to end caste based discrimination.
- Religious movements show that there is a need to pursue secularism in approach and uplift vulnerable communities.
We need to learn lessons from such movement since the demand can be legitimate even if the methods are traditional.
Topics: GS-I: Effects of Globalization On Indian Society • GS-I: Social Empowerment Communalism Regionalism Secularism • GS-II: Government Policies and Interventions for Development in Various Sectors