4 min read.Updated: 04 Jan 2017, 11:18 AM ISTLivemint
The apex court's decision against canvassing for votes on grounds of religion, caste, creed, community or language moves into tricky territory
The Supreme Court’s seven-judge bench decision that candidates can’t seek votes on grounds of religion, caste, creed, community or language seems, on the face of it, like a progressive step that could potentially rewrite the rules of engagement in Indian politics. India is a secular state and, the court argues, it is only in the fitness of things that religion and the like are kept out of the electoral process. But the reality of politics and the political economy is more nuanced than the judgement might indicate—evidenced by the fact that three of the seven judges dissented with the majority opinion.