Through the Looking Glass of Intersectionality: Making Sense of Indian Discrimination Jurisprudence under Article 15

Shreya Atrey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

Abstract

In the world’s largest democracy, which frequently prizes itself for its “diversity”, how has intersectional discrimination been excluded from the ambit of Article 15 of the Indian Constitution to date? This article is interested in examining this inscrutability. The motivation is to explore how intersectionality needs to manoeuvre the foundational roadblock of the constricted view of discrimination as based only on a single ground. Through the example of sex discrimination, the article examines how the interpretation of the general constitutional guarantee of non-discrimination contained in clause (1) of Article 15 has restricted the prohibition of discrimination to a single ground, preventing the recognition of intersectional discrimination. However, as this article argues, a legitimate interpretation of clause (1) neither makes it a closed list of grounds nor limits it to single ground discrimination; but instead is concerned with finding the basis of discrimination in enumerated or analogous grounds. The final analysis thus offers a qualitative reconstruction of Article 15(1) by linking the basis of discrimination to grounds, incorporating the possibility of accommodating multiple grounds in a discrimination claim.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)160-185
Number of pages26
JournalEqual Rights Review
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016

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