Book Release of ‘Breathing Life into the Constitution: Human Rights Lawyering in India” | Thursday, Jan 19, 4 pm | Training Centre, NLSIU, Bengaluru

The National Law School of India University & the Alternative Law Forum

invite you to the book release of

‘Breathing Life into the Constitution: Human Rights Lawyering in India’ 

by Saumya Uma and Arvind Narrain

Thursday, January 19, 4 pm

Venue: Training Centre, National Law School of India University, Bengaluru

​The book itself is based on an archive of interviews with human rights lawyers in contemporary India and explores the idea that ‘human rights lawyering is about giving content to Indian democracy and about shifting the understanding of democracy from majoritarian to constitutional.’ The book makes the case that human rights lawyering amplifies the voices of minorities of many stripes and hues, from disabled people, religious minorities, and Dalits to LGBT persons. In a majoritarian set up, these voices are seen as threatening the unitary fabric of the nation and hence are either ignored or actively suppressed. In such a context, when concerns of unpopular minorities are ignored by the majority and a government which enjoys a parliamentary majority has no compunctions in riding roughshod over minority rights where does the besieged and embattled minority turn to?…The framework of the Constitution guarantees the protection of the rights of all persons regardless of the opinion of the majority. Human rights lawyers are the agents for bringing before the judiciary and the wider public concerns of many oppressed and subjugated minorities, which may not have representation in parliament.​”

The book release shall be followed by a book discussion.

Brief Remarks                              Dr Venkata RaoNLSIU
Introduction to the book         Arvind Narrain and Darshana Mitra, ALF
Responses                                      Prof Babu Matthew, NLSIU
                                                            Dr. V.S. Elizabeth, NLSIU
                        Dr. Rahul Rao, School of Oriental and African
Studies (SOAS)