Taking Nature to the Courtroom in South Asia. Edinburgh, 15-16 June 2017

Starting June 2, 2017 - Ending June 2, 2027

The aim of this workshop is to explore three contexts in which environmental issues, and the relationship between ecology and religion, come to the fore in contemporary South Asia: (i) development projects and territories of the gods; (ii) protected areas and people’s rights; and (iii) 'animal rights' and religious reforms. Its distinctive focus, differentiating it from other work on development, environment or religion in South Asia, is on legal aspects of these issues, where possible on actual litigation in appellate and other courts.

Taking Nature to the Courtroom in South Asia
St Trinnean’s Room, Pollock Halls, Edinburgh 15-16 June 2017

The aim of this workshop is to explore three contexts in which environmental issues, and the relationship between ecology and religion, come to the fore in contemporary South Asia: (i) development projects and territories of the gods; (ii) protected areas and people’s rights; and (iii) 'animal rights' and religious reforms. Its distinctive focus, differentiating it from other work on development, environment or religion in South Asia, is on legal aspects of these issues, where possible on actual litigation in appellate and other courts.

The workshop brings together international scholars with a track record of work on these topics, with a view to creating new synergies and stimulating further research. The topic is particularly timely in view of the return to power of the BJP in India; the rapid growth of Public Interest Litigation; and recent or impending decisions in the upper courts. For example, a case on the banning of animal sacrifice is currently before the Indian Supreme Court. The principal objective is to build upon the evidence from South Asia so as to make a significant empirical and theoretical contribution to broader social science debates on the judicialisation of political and environmental discourses and actions worldwide.

See detailed programme of the workshop