“Historical Vision of Marginalisation and Legislative framework”



The marginalisation also knew as Social Exclusion is the method in which people are blocked from (or denied full access to) different rights, openings and assets that are ordinarily accessible to individuals of a diverse gather, and which are principal to social integration and recognition of human rights inside that specific bunch[1]

Marginalisation has been a customary concept since ages where the people are excluded from society due to economic, educational, financial, social status, etc.; they have been deprived of various rights. This paper studies about historical aspects and constitutional framework of Marginalisation were tracing back to ancient period Hindus were divided into main four categories that were Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. Shudras were marginalized ancient period followed by medieval period were where bureaucracy and military rule were at the peak where social status became the reason of Marginalisation then in 1600 Britishers gave a turning dead-end in a vicious circle of poverty and zamindari after long discrimination faced by Dalits, Harijans and backward classes. We have different connotations and nuances in the modern era of the post-colonial, postmodern period and in a world that is predominantly driven by market forces at the time of independence our Constitution was made in such a way where the theme was Compensatory Discriminatory which was based on ‘Rule of Law’ which are embedded in Article 14 to 32 mainly read with Article 39A and Article 330 to 342 of The Constitution of India(which deals with the reservation for marginalised people). Further, we have marginalisation in education and women in weaker sections of society.

What is marginalisation? 

The concept of marginalisation is Ad infinitum[2], it has been practised in India since ages. When people with a low profile and income are separated from the various utilities of the society like education, economics, psychology, sociology etc. Marginalized the act of treating someone or something as if they are not important[3]. For instance in India, if we see earlier women (especially widows) has been treated as a weaker section due to the patriarchal system. Even if we see in remote areas, in the present time this practice is being carried on.

Historic Background

In India, marginalisation is the custom that has been carried on from centuries to centuries whether it was Vedic Period, Medieval Period, Post and Pre-Independence era. The historic period was also dived into Hindu Period, Muslim Period and Britisher Period[4].




Ancient Period(3000BC-1190AD)

Our ancient period consists mainly Indus Valley Civilisation and Vedic Civilisation;

The Indus Valley Civilization

 Falling back in 3000 when Indus valley Civilization begins at the time, it was a matriarchal society where women were pre-dominated having oligarchy governance  ( rule of merchants or an elite class) and the class was divided on basis of Occupation mainly agrarian society and scholars where the people with low status and income were treated as secondary to elites and use to serve them and this could be proved through wherefrom the artefacts and instruments of that era present in the museum of Rupnagar and national museum, New Delhi.

The Vedic Civilization

Then, we have Vedic civilization when Aryans invaded India where Vedas governed the society and society was being divided into four categories:

  • Bharamas
  • Kshatriyas
  • Vaishyas
  • Shudras

the above list represents a social class which was divided at that time Bharamas where the priest the most elite one class then Kshatriyas, the warriors were also designated class, Vaishyas were the member of tribes common people; least and derogated marginalised class was of Shudras who were untouchables and not allowed to study[5] these low caste people were not allowed to enhance their knowledge. They were a slave of the Baramins from birth and meant to serve them thought their life as Shudras. According to Manusmritis, if shuras spoke ill of bharamins then a long 10 inch long red-hot iron nail was to be thrust into his mouth and if Shudras happen to do a good deed then also he was punished. For shudras Religious Preaching not allowed if someone dares to preach a brahmin hot oil must be poured into his mouth.

Medieval Period (997AD-1674)
Mughal Empire

Mughals came into India in 1001 when Mohmad Ghazni defeated Jaipala, the king of Punjab till 1206 Mughals reached Delhi and established their Delhi Sultanate

Guru Nanak And Sikhism

Guru Nanak’s proclaiming came when there were clashes between different religions. Humanity was so inebriated proudly and inner self that individuals had begun battling against one another for the sake of God and religion. Thus, Guru Nanak started his lessons by saying that there are no Hindus and no Muslims. This suggests the way that God is one and that He is just observed distinctively through different religions. Guru Nanak’s lessons, despite the fact that not planned, added to the solidarity of Hindus and Muslims to a degree. He likewise underscored the significance of the balance of humanity. He denounced subjugation and racial separation and said that all are equivalent.

Guru Nanak is one of the most significant strict figures to have added to ladies strengthening in India. Guru Nanak engaged his devotees to regard ladies and to regard them as their equivalent. He said a man is constantly bound to ladies and that without ladies there would be no creation on earth. He likewise reestablished the confidence in God by saying that the Creator is profoundly engaged with what man is attempting to accomplish on earth. While a large portion of the significant religions including the factions of Hinduism and Buddhism upheld asceticism so as to accomplish salvation, Guru Nanak thought of a religion that bolsters the way of life of a normal householder. In particular, he additionally showed his devotees the strategies to achieve salvation while having an ordinary existence inside the general public. He, truth be told, worried about the significance of driving existence with one’s relatives. In addition to the fact that he taught his standards, yet he additionally filled in as a living model. At the point when Guru Nanak left for the magnificent house, different Gurus followed his lessons and kept on spreading his message.

Modern Period(1751AD-present)
British Rule

At the point when the British Raj started to take power in India in 1757, they misused the standing framework as a method for social control. The British aligned themselves with the Brahmin position, reestablishing a portion of its benefits that had been cancelled by the Muslim rulers. Be that as it may, numerous Indian traditions concerning the lower ranks appeared to be prejudicial to the British, so these were banned. During the 1930s and 1940s, the British government made laws to secure the “Planned standings,” untouchables and low-station individuals.

Development toward the annulment of unapproachability occurred inside Indian culture in the nineteenth and mid-twentieth hundred of years also. In 1928, the principal sanctuary invited untouchables (Dalits) to venerate with its upper-standing individuals. Mohandas Gandhi upheld liberation for the Dalits, as well, instituting the term Harijan or “Offspring of God” to depict them.

  • Impact of Marginalisation
    • Disturbance in society
    • Illiteracy
    • Unemployment
    • Poverty
    • Social disturbance
    • Increase in Crime Rate

Constitutional Framework

If observe our constitution of India is giving support to the concept of marginalization like on one side our constitution under Article 14: says Equality before law – “the state shall not deny to any person equality before the law and equal protection of the laws within the territory of India” in short it says everyone should be treated equally but on contrary under article 14 and 15 though it is prohibiting discrimination on grounds of religion, caste, race, sex or place of birth and talking about giving equal opportunity in matters of public employment in its sub-clauses it is giving special status to women and children and schedule tribe and schedule cast and providing reservation quotas to them. In my opinion, this is creating a margin between the general public and them. Because when we are saying everyone is equal so why we are providing a special status to women and children and schedule tribes and schedule cast. It is giving a society a picture that they are weaker than other people who are not in those categories, which indirectly supporting the concept of marginalisation.

The division we are doing on the name of giving protection to women children and to scheduled tribes and caste it is encouraging the concept of marginalization because we are proving them as a weaker section which is needed to be saved by the government from the general public. if we think psychologically people are treating them as a separate section which is needed to provide special protection by the state, which is increasing this gap instead of decreasing it.

So government instead of marginalizing them from the general public in name of giving protection should treat them all equally either it is schedule tribes and caste or women and children, As it treats the general public.

Yes, it is important for the government to support weaker section but why they treated to be different if we are providing certain protection to one it should be provided to all who are in the need of that; be it a general caste, be it, men or women, be it a scheduled tribe or caste. Irrespective of their caste and sex we should provide protection for people who need it.

So, I think there are certain provisions which are needed to be changed because it is encouraging marginalization which itself is becoming a issue these days, like reservations policies etc.

  • Compensatory Discrimination: Since long ages the ancestors of Untouchable whether in form of shudras, Dalits, Schedule caste, Schedule Tribe , Other Backward classes so to compensate the losses , mental trauma , harassment, torture ,etc. During the framing of Our Indian Constitution Compensatory theme was kept in mind which was enshrined in Part 16 of The Indian constitution Law[6] as follows:

Article 331. Representation of the Anglo-Indian community in the House of the People.

Article 332. Reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Legislative Assemblies of the States.

Article 333. Representation of the Anglo-Indian community in the Legislative Assemblies of the States.

Article 334. Reservation of seats and special representation to cease after [fifty years]

Article 335. Claims of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to services and posts.

Article 336. Special provision for Anglo-Indian community in certain services.

Article 337. Special provision with respect to educational grants for the benefit of Anglo-Indian community

Article 338. National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

Article 339. Control of the Union over the Administration of Scheduled Areas and the welfare of Scheduled Tribes

Article 340. Appointment of a Commission to investigate the conditions of backward classes

Article 341. Scheduled Castes

Article 342. Scheduled Tribes

  • Rule of Law: Enshrined under Article 14 Equality before Law mainly and article 15-18 where we talk about like and alike, in our Country we have either rich or poor means rich are richer and poor are poorer, where it is difficult to provide equality to each and every alike and like but Part 3rd of the Constitution are fundamental Rights which provide Equality with Equity.
  • Access of justice: Enshrined under Article 39 A -Equal Justice to all under which marginalised people are provided free access to justice under Legal Aid Services, they can approach the court in case of legal grievance despite the financial condition at free of charge.

Criticism of Marginalisation

We are giving special status to women and making law for the protection of their rights. Why we need to protect them separately, why people are not expecting them as part of society women might be less powerful than men but it is not that all men are powerful some of them might be needed to be protected from the conspiracy women do to by taking the plea of Women Rights

We make laws to protect women from domestic violence but what about men who are facing domestic violence where they should they appeal? It is just not only women who face cruelty but Men also face Cruelty

It is just because of marginalization that we are treating women as weaker section and men as strong due to which in present situation men is facing discrimination and also tagging someone with the whole sympathy can make them use privilege as a weapon.

So, the government should treat everyone equally and make the law of such a nature that treats everyone equally and based on the concept of providing relief to the aggrieved person and victim, not on caste and gender bases.


Marginalisation is an ongoing tradition of Indian Society, where not all the people cane be treated Equality because In India we have both alike and like equality can be maintained between two likes so, we require “Equity Not Equality”, to end this marginalisation we need to end special treatment concept giving all importance to one thing make another one unimportant so, a proper balance is must between likes and alikes.

Also Read: Dying Declaration – Dying Person Never Lies

[1] “About”, Institute on Public Safety and Social Justice, Adler University.

[2] Means without limit or forever (golden legal maxims, 2016)

[3] https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/marginalization , last accessed on 10th March,2020

[4] Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). “Mill, James”. Encyclopedia Britannica. 19 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 453–454.

[5] ‘Don’t teach a Shudra’ (Dharma shastras)

[6] The Indian Constitution

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