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Saturday, May 25, 2024

From Chanakya To Chare: Roads, Rights And Resilience Of The People

In the face of adversity, in a world that often forgets its obligations to its citizens, “Project Constitutional Justice” stands as a beacon of hope, a testament to the indomitable spirit of those who believe that a better world is within our grasp. In the land of Nagaland, just as in the tales of Chanakya and Chandragupta, justice shall rise once more, and it will be a justice not bestowed from the powerful above but a justice earned, fought for, and claimed by the people – a justice truly constitutional in its essence.

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By: Dr. Aniruddha Babar

“In some part of the universe, a captivating debate unfolded. “X1” argued that teachers inclined towards social engagement, societal transformation should leave their teaching positions and join NGOs. “X2” countered, emphasizing that teachers transcend ‘corporate’ roles; their duty transcends time, history, and nation. They bear the weighty responsibility of being knowledge custodians, architects of future generations, and guides of societal evolution. The discourse invoked names like Arya Chanakya and Arya Panini of Taxila University, Arya Charaka and Arya Nagarujuna of Nalanda University, and more luminaries. Prof. B.R. Ambedkar, Prof. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan, and Prof. K.T. Shah was heralded. The timeless legacy of these masters must guide teachers till their last breath. They’re servants of society, bound to a profound duty that transcends individual pursuits. The universe echoed with the reminder that teachers, with their sacred role, shape the very fabric of civilization. A society where an awakened Teacher and his student live and roam fearlessly is a progressive society. As Arya Chanakya aka Vishnugupt, a renowned Professor of Political Science from Taxila University quoted-A teacher is never an ordinary person. Construction and Destruction can be produced in his lap.”

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In the tapestry of history, certain figures emerge as beacons of change, symbols of righteous justice and unwavering determination. Just as the legendary Teacher-Student duo of Arya Chanakya aka “Kautilya” as well as “Vinshnugupt” and Chandragupta Maurya transformed their world, their spirit resonates through the ages, igniting flames of transformation wherever the powerful tread on the rights of the powerless. It’s a divine decree, a law of creation that persists despite the tests of time – as long as oppressive forces akin to “King Dhananand” prevail, champions like Chanakya and Chandragupta will rise to restore justice.

Even in the far corners of Nagaland, these avatars of justice find their reincarnation, their purpose entwined with the destiny of their land. It is the collective soul of a people who yearn for change, who refuse to bend under the weight of corruption, hypocrisy, and miscreants. As the wheel of fate turns, once again, the echoes of Chanakya and Chandragupta resonate through the hearts of the citizens of Chare Town and its neighboring regions.

Enter “Project Constitutional Justice,” a rallying cry of those who refuse to accept subpar conditions, who refuse to be silenced by crumbling roadways and the erosion of their constitutional rights. In the collaboration between School Management and Development Committee; Government High School, Chare, socially awakened Teachers (modern Chanakyas), Students (modern Chandraguptas) of GHS, Chare and the vigilant citizens, a potent force has emerged, a force that transcends the mundane, a force- which has a fundamental strength of committed relationship between Teachers and Students-stands for the principles that shape nations.

At its core, “Project Constitutional Justice” seeks to shine a spotlight on the dire state of the roads, those lifelines that should connect and prosper communities but have languished in neglect. Ever since its inception as one of the oldest town settlements in Nagaland, Chare town has borne the burden of a persistent absence: the lack of quality roads, an essential hallmark of modern civilization. Through the passage of time, as societies evolve and progress, Chare has endured the weight of subpar road infrastructure, deprived of the very arteries that connect communities, enable trade, and uplift the lives of its residents. The town, rich in history and potential, has faced the struggles of inadequate roadways, hindered in its growth, prosperity, and connectivity by this glaring issue. This absence of civilized roads isn’t just a physical challenge; it symbolizes the neglect, the unfulfilled promises, and the untapped potential of a community longing for progress, striving for a future where its roads not only lead to neighboring areas but to prosperity, justice, and the fulfillment of its rightful place in the tapestry of Nagaland’s heritage.

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The residents of Chare Town and its nearby regions have endured the brunt of inadequate infrastructure for far too long, but they are not victims; they are warriors for justice. Their initiative sends a resounding message, not just to their local leaders and administration but to the very essence of their democracy: that the people have a voice, and that voice demands justice, equality, and the right to a better life.

The partners in “Project Constitutional Justice” maintain that the right to access good quality roads is unequivocally a fundamental right enshrined within the framework of the Constitution of India, particularly under the purview of Articles 19 and 21. Article 19 (1) (d) guarantees the right to freedom of movement, a facet intrinsically linked to the availability of well-maintained road infrastructure.

Simultaneously, Article 21 safeguards the fundamental right to life and personal liberty, emphasizing that no individual can be deprived of these rights except by a lawful procedure.

Further, the concerned citizens of Chare town observe, in the context of road safety, pothole accidents, though seemingly commonplace, bear the weight of man-made disasters, challenging the very essence of these constitutional provisions. It is the constitutional duty of the state to uphold and protect the rights bestowed under Article 21, and this extends to safeguarding citizens’ lives and personal liberty from the perils posed by inadequately maintained roads. The state’s responsibility to ensure safe roads is not merely a matter of convenience but an imperative rooted in the principles of justice, fairness, and the protection of every citizen’s right to life and dignity.

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The resilience of these everyday citizens, rallying under the banner of “Project Constitutional Justice,” is awe-inspiring. It is a testament to the power of collective action, a reminder that real change emerges from the grassroots, from those who know the true meaning of struggle. Their actions, their unity, prove that the common, middle-class people of the eastern region are now more than ever geared up to reshape their world.

This isn’t just a project; it’s a movement. It’s an assertion that the constitution isn’t just a set of words on paper; it’s the foundation upon which a just society is built. It is an affirmation that those who have been denied justice for too long will rise, stand shoulder to shoulder, and demand what is rightfully theirs.

“Project Constitutional Justice” isn’t the cry of a select few; it’s a rallying call to all who believe in justice, fairness, and a world where the principles of a constitution aren’t just ideals, but living realities. It’s an initiative born out of the hearts of common men and women, fueled by a burning desire for social justice.

In the face of adversity, in a world that often forgets its obligations to its citizens, “Project Constitutional Justice” stands as a beacon of hope, a testament to the indomitable spirit of those who believe that a better world is within our grasp. In the land of Nagaland, just as in the tales of Chanakya and Chandragupta, justice shall rise once more, and it will be a justice not bestowed from the powerful above but a justice earned, fought for, and claimed by the people – a justice truly constitutional in its essence.

I congratulate SMDC, Students, Teachers, Staff of GHS, CHARE, TUENSANG and citizens of Chare Town and adjacent areas for their brave initiative-PROJECT CONSTITUTIONAL JUSTICE. You do not need to be a social worker or politician of any kind/any level to contribute to the society and to build the new world for a New Man of tomorrow-as a member of education institution dear Teachers, it is your duty to take care of society. Fight for your ROADS- Fight for your RIGHTS. The Constitution is with you all. Remember, Teachers have potential to change the world- Never forget the great “CHANAKYA”. (The author is an academician in the Dept of Political Science, Tetso College)

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