On January 26, 1950, the world’s largest democracy adopted its Constitution. As a constitutional-rights litigator before India’s Supreme Court, MENAKA GURUSWAMY locates her clients’ claims for justice in the Constitution’s vision for a better India by challenging the British Raj’s sodomy law, by examining alleged large-scale extra-judicial killings by the military, by pushing for dramatic legal reform of the national bureaucracy, and through desegregating exclusive private schools.
At the same time, each individual case is a human story that provides insights into modern India – tumultuous but stable, a robust democracy laced with feudalism, distinguished by deep religiosity but committed to secularism, sometimes segregated by caste, gender and religion; yet despite her enormous diversity, still united by an abiding faith in cosmopolitan democratic constitutionalism.
MENAKA GURUSWAMY, a Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin in 2016/2017, litigates critical constitutional-rights cases before the Supreme Court of India. Her scholarship and teaching is in the areas of comparative constitutional law, constitutional theory and politics. She has taught at Yale Law School and New York University’s School of Law.
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