Freeing the Indian Conscience

A bit late in the day, but still worth recording. Of course, legal practitioners have been arguing on social media that this freedom from declaring a religious affiliation was always present in the Indian constitution, but for people like me, who have no legal training or knowledge, a direct proclamation such as this is much more valuable than a right that might be more interpretive or extrapolatory in nature.

The question now, of course, is when the government offices in Bombay will get around to editing their decades-old forms and printing them, or at the very least accept a blank in the box provided in the old forms for ‘religious affiliation’. Not any time soon, I suspect. Bureaucracy, especially the Indian bureaucracy, is a behemoth of restful inertia.

Still, theory is on the non-religious citizen’s side. That’s something to celebrate. At least till some zealous righteous person or group appeals against this ‘discrimination’, but hey, even atheists can hope.




  1. Well, actually, I have left blank that section for many years now, and sometimes the man/woman at the other end of the counter gives me grief and I out-argue them, but mostly they just can’t be bothered one way or the other. I suspect this whole logistical issue of ensuring the forms etc everywhere have this clause deleted will come much later, given the zymosis so prevalent in our govt. offices, but at least it’s a good start.


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