Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Ifran Mollah (Eastern University - Bangladesh) has posted Hindu Women's Right to Property at the Crossroads: The Tension between Human Rights and Cultural Relativism (Journal of Society and Change) on SSRN. Here's the abstract:
Property rights of women under Hindu religious system have fairly been considered an issue of conflicting discourse both from domestic as well as global perspective. Restrictions imposed by Religio-legal as well as socio-cultural norms and practices have embedded the discriminatory level of treatment in more deep rooted dimension for Hindu women as to property rights. This controversy has been excelled with the pressure of global community for establishing a fair and equal property rights while assessing the feasibility and implications of universal rights regime disregard of religious or cultural differences. In the course of time, intervention of legislative authority for improvising present situation and to make the whole rights regime at national level to synchronize with universal rights framework through the amendment of existing domestic laws has proved to be successful. Nevertheless, in the context of practical enforcement, bringing the equilibrium of justice in between religious command and secular authority has created double jeopardy for the legislative authority. In this backdrop, the theory of cultural relativism has been resorted to eliminate the standoff between religious norms & practices of a particular community and the demand of global community for fair and equal treatment of all. Cultural relativists have been heavily criticized for being too defensive as against the principle of universality and supporting discrimination and abuse of human rights in different circumstances. Hence, it is essential to revisit the role of Religio-legal, universal and socio-cultural theory and practices in establishing the domain of equal status of right to property for Hindu women.