Political Process in India

By DR. JHUMPA MUKHERJEE   |   St. Xavier's College (Autonomous), Kolkata
Learners enrolled: 831
The course encompasses the functioning of electoral democracy in India in the context of a federal multicultural set up as well as the dynamics of political process in India, nature of party functioning and their impact on coalition politics and voting behaviour. The course will also engage students with the various autonomy and regional movements. How religion and caste interacts in the political sphere bringing in the contending debates on secularism and caste politics interactions simultaneously giving an understanding of the changing nature of the Indian state from its developmental and welfare perspectives.
Course Status : Ongoing
Course Type : Core
Duration : 12 weeks
Start Date : 01 Feb 2022
End Date : 25 Apr 2022
Exam Date :
Enrollment Ends : 31 Mar 2022
Category :
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit Points : 6
Level : Undergraduate

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1
1. Origin and Development of the Indian party system 
2. Nature and trends of Indian party system 
3. Regional parties: role and significance in Indian federalism 
4. Political defection in India 

Week 2
1. Coalition politics and parties 
2. Role of opposition parties in Indian parliamentary system 
3. Determinants of voting behaviour: Populism
4. Caste as a determinant of voting behaviour 

Week 3
1. Ethnicity Region & Language as determinants of voting behaviour
2. Class as a determinant of voting behaviour 
3. Gender as a determinant of voting behaviour  
4. Voting behaviour of Rural-Urban India 

Week 4
1. Religion and voting behaviour  
2. Determinants of voting behaviour: Cult/Charisma/Personality 
3. Regionalism in India: a conceptual analysis 
4. Regionalism and Indian federalism 

Week 5
1. Accommodation of regional aspirations—Linguistic reorganization 
2. Regional aspirations: Case study of Northeast India 
3. Autonomy and secessionism: Case of Punjab and Nagaland 
4. Statehood and Sub-regional movements: Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, and Uttarakhand 

Week 6
1. Autonomy movements: Bodo homeland movement and the Gorkhaland movement 
2. Impact of globalization on regional movements: Telangana   
3. Exploring the nature of identity politics in India
4. Meaning and nature of communalism 

Week 7
1. Variants of communal politics in post independent India 
2. Factors responsible for the growth of communal politics in India 
3. Hindu nationalism: a historical analysis 
4. Rise of Hindutva politics in India: contemporary scenario 

Week 8
1. Indian aspect of secularism 
2. Religion-State relationship: implications for right to equality 
3. Caste as an identity in India 
4. Dominant and entrenched caste and their role in Indian politics: a contemporary scenario 

Week 9
1. Caste and Indian constitutional provisions 
2. Electoral politics and the changing nature of caste 
3. Political mobilization of caste identities in India
4. Caste and politics: a changing scenario 

Week 10
1. Affirmative Action Policies in India: Sources, directions and implications for class, caste and tribes 
2. A case of Affirmative Action in favour of the Adivasis: The Forest Rights Act 
3. The Reservation Policy in India 
4. Affirmative Action for women 

Week 11
1. Securing social justice through Affirmative Action 
2. Role of Affirmative Action in achieving health equity in India 
3. Nature of the Indian state from Independence to 1990 
4. Nature of the Indian state: post-liberalization era (1990 onwards) 

Week 12
1. Relevance of the concept of Welfare State in India 
2. Poverty and Developmental issues in India 
3. The Indian state and its use of coercive power 
4. The Indian State: Welfare versus Development 

Books and references

1. Niraja Gopal Jayal & Pratap Bhanu Mehta, The Oxford Companion to Politics in India, Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2010.
2. Rajni Kothari, Politics in India Orient Longman, Hyderabad, 1970.
3. Subrata K. Mitra, Politics in India: Structure Process and Policy, Routledge, New York, 2017
4. Partha Chatterjee (ed.), State and Politics in India, Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2002.
5. Atul Kohli & Prerna Singh (eds.) Routledge Handbook of Indian Politics, Routledge, New York, 2016.
6. Bidyut Chakrabarty Indian Politics and Society since Independence Events, processes and ideology, Routledge, New York, 2008
7. Achin Vanaik and R. Bhargava (eds.), Understanding Contemporary India: Critical Perspectives, Orient Blackswan, New Delhi, 2010

Instructor bio


St. Xavier's College (Autonomous), Kolkata
Jhumpa Mukherjee (Gold Medalist), PhD is Assistant Professor of Political Science at St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata. She is the author of Conflict Resolution in Multicultural Societies: The Indian Experience (Sage Publications, New Delhi and London 2014) and The World of Human Rights (Concept Publications, New Delhi 2014). She has contributed chapters in edited books and has published articles on contemporary social and political issues in national and international journals and has participated in national and international conferences. Her areas of research interest include Indian Politics, Comparative federalism and human rights.

Course certificate

30% for in Course Assessment & 70% of end-term Proctored Exam.

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