Date: 8/29/2002



Why did the Ramakrishna Mission say they are not Hindus" -

Article 30 of the Indian Constitution provides minority educational institutions with certain rights that enable them to function under minimal control. Conversely educational institutions run by Hindus are subject to greater State control. In 1980 when a new principal Swami Shivamoyananda was appointed the Teachers Council went on strike, took over the management of the College and prevented the new principal from functioning but also appointed a new principal. The Mission and Secretary instituted a civil suit seeking a declaration that the functioning of Shri Gupta as principal and 14 professors was illegal. In the High Court the teachers sought the issue of a writ asking the West Bengal govt to reconstitute the governing body according to the standard pattern & a writ declaring that the Mission college is governed by the W.B. Act of 1975 & 1978.

The Mission resisted these writs. Meanwhile the Calcutta University sent the Mission notices for reconstituting the governing bodies of three other colleges run by the mission. Read On.



a.. Background to Case - This chapter briefly tells you about the facts of the case involving the Ramakrishna Mission and the State of West Bengal that led to this matter being referred to the Supreme Court. Does there exist a Ramakrishna religion? Are they are a Minority under article 30?

b.. Bare Act - This chapter gives you Articles 19 and 25-30 as they appear in the Constitution. The intent is to enable a simple reading of these provisions.

c.. Historical Background - The object of this chapter is to give you pre-Independence events that forced the makers of the Constitution to provide for minority rights like art 30. The chapter starts with the various Acts passed by the Brits from 1858 to 1947. Next it tells you why/how the Brits encouraged separatist tendencies amongst Muslims, creation of separate electorates that eventually led to the Partition of India & the Minority problem thereafter.

d.. Meaning of Secular - It starts with the Preamble of the Constitution as written in 1950 and amendments of 1976. Next it attempts to define Secularism by referring to Supreme Court judgments and compares with U.SA. Britain, Germany, France, Turkey and Islam. It ends with an analysis on the subject. http://www.esamskriti.com/html/new_inside.asp?cat_name=why&sid=129&count1=4&cid=674

e.. What is Religion? - Have quoted Sri Aurobindo on religion. What is the Indian equivalent of religion? Dharma! Have defined the term thereafter. Ended with a Supreme Court judgment on the subject. http://www.esamskriti.com/html/new_inside.asp?cat_name=why&sid=129&count1=5&cid=675

f.. Who is a Minority? - The chapter answers four questions namely, who is Minority & a linguistic minority? Issues arising out of denominations and sects? Are Jains, Buddhist and Sikhs minorities for the purposes of article 30 (1)? Have referred to various Court judgments on the subject. Inputs from Germany too. http://www.esamskriti.com/html/new_inside.asp?cat_name=why&sid=129&count1=6&cid=676

g.. Establish and Administer - The chapter covers the meaning of ‘ right to establish and administer educational institutions’. Examined the relationship between articles 29 & 30. Then there is the Benefit Debate. Must the majority of students in a minority institution be from the minority community or! Have quoted various Supreme Court judgments that are contrary to each other. It ends with an analysis of the issues involved.

h.. Administrative Issues - covers affiliation and recognition, practical issues and rights of employees, students, and management.

i.. Hindu Schools - have listed down various legal provisions and showed how they are applicable or not applicable to Hindu and minority schools. Next, Do Non-minorities have a fundamental right to establish and administer an educational institutional that is secular in nature?

j.. Legal View - have quoted Shri M P Jain and Dr Durga Das Basu on various aspects of articles 26 to 30, their implications on the nation.

k.. Summary - have summarized chapters one to ten with analysis.



l.. Way Forward - suggestions on where do we go from here.