Beteille’s condemnation and Ramachandra Guha’s hope

Here is the last sentence from an article of Andre Beteille in EPW (4 October, 2008, which I could get thanks to JSTOR subscription of the Institute):

It would appear therefore that the people of India are destined to oscillate endlessly between the two poles of constitutionalism and populism without ever discarding the one or the other.

I got a reference to the article from Ram Guha, who is hopeful in spite of what Beteille has to say:

But we must live in hope. Perhaps, in reflecting in the New Year on the events of the last half of 2011, elected politicians may be compelled to honour their Constitutional obligations more seriously. And perhaps, on the other side, civil society activists will now act with more sobriety and less self-righteousness. To both sides I urge a close reading of the full text of André Béteille’s essay, published, under the title ‘Constitutional Morality’, in the issue of the Economic and Political Weekly dated October 4, 2008. In my view, the essay should be mandatory reading for all thinking, reflective, Indians, in whose ranks I would (hopefully and generously) include the likes of Kapil Sibal, P Chidambaram, Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj, Arvind Kejriwal, and Kiran Bedi.

Take a look, and if possible, get hold of Beteille’s piece; as Guha notes, he wrote it before the ascendancy of Team Anna!

One Response to “Beteille’s condemnation and Ramachandra Guha’s hope”

  1. Gaddeswarup Says:

    I subscribe to EPW but am not able to download that article. The one by Dipesh Chakraboarty ” in the name of politics” , on a similar theme which appeared in EPW in 2005 I am able to download.

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