Political decentralization and ethinic violence in sixth schedule areas of Assam
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What are the conditions under which political decentralization instead of preventing can actually foster ethnic violence? Political decentralization is considered to reduce ethnic violence and demands for ethnic separatism, by granting contending groups control over political, social and economic affairs. However, in practice decentralization has been comparatively effective in reducing ethnic violence in some places while in other cases, political decentralization created conditions for violence. While some ethnically diverse regions manage to maintain a veritable record of peaceful relations between ethnic groups, others experience enduring violence. Countries like Aland Island, South Tyrol, India and Indonesia contained ethnic violence by providing politically autonomous regions and devolving decentralized powers to different separatist ethnic groups. On the other hand, there are cases in South Asia, particularly, some regions in Northeast India, northeastern region in Sri Lanka and the northern region in Bangladesh where political decentralization has not produced effective outcomes and in some cases this led to conflicts and recurring ethnic violence. Variation of the relationship between political decentralization and ethnic violence across time and space therefore constitute an unresolved puzzle in the field of ethnic conflict prevention.
Supervisor: Pahi Saikia
HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES