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Abstract

This article focuses on the changing relationship between democracy, marginalised communities, and political reservation, in India.5 While doing so, the article is structured in the following way. First, it briefly discusses political reservation in India. Second, it examines the relationship between the judiciary and reservation, and explores whether political reservation has been subjected to litigation. Third, it traces the politics of political reservation, especially in recent demands for reservation by various communities. Fifth, it unravels the various facets of invisible opposition to caste- and ethnic (tribe)-based political reservation in India. Sixth, it analyses the reasons for the invisible and silent nature of opposition and resistance to political reservation for the SCs and the STs in India. This is followed by the conclusion. Though the article does not focus on reservations in government employment and educational institutions per se, it makes frequent comparative references to understand the nuances of the issue of political reservation in India. The article argues that the opposition and resistance to caste- and ethnic (tribe)-based political reservation continue to be invisible because the issue of merit, which is at the root of the heated debate, is blurred in the context of political reservation, and due to the ample scope for the democratic dominance of dominant communities in the existing political structure in India.

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