Q. Regionalism in India is a result of various interconnected factors. In this light discuss the various types regionalism in India and also suggest suitable measures to curtail negative impact of regionalism.

Structure of the answer:

  • Introduction (regionalism)
  • Factors responsible for regionalism
  • Types of regionalism
  • Conclusion/ way forward

Model Answer

Regionalism is a strong attachment to one’s own region. Thus, it is an ideology that seek to advance cause of a region. The rise of regionalism in India is a result of various factors:

  • Historically, formation of various regional kingdoms and frequent regional wars led to rise of regional ideology.
  • Due to specific geography of a region there developed different food, clothing
  • The mother tongue (linguism) also created a profound attachment to one’s own language and hence regional identity developed.
  • Formation of regional parties to protect regional interest also led to rise of regionalism. For Ex- Shiv Sena.
  • Lop sided economic development led to inequality between different state and consequently leading to regionalism. For ex- problem of Naxalism.

In this background, the different types of regionalism are categorised as follows:

  • Parochialism: When people of a region consider regional interest superior and shun nationalist outlook. For ex- Violence by ULFA (Assam) against Bihari.
  • Regionalism: Reflected when people of a region raise voice for their autonomy, rights, fair share in development process and demand separate statehood or autonomy within state. For ex- Bodoland demand.
  • Secessionism: When a region tries to end its association from the nation to see itself as separate entity on the world map. For ex- Z. Phizo demand for Nagaland.
  • Inter-state rivalry: State and its people see other states as its competitors resulting into conflict over sharing of common resources, land boundary issues For ex- Cauvery water dispute between Tamil Nadu-Kerala.

Way forward:

  • The role of National Integration Council must be revamped to resolve conflicting regional aspirations.
  • Reviving national games such as Hockey, which can become symbol of unity.
  • Cultural sensitisation must be taken up in colleges to avoid hatred based on regions. For ex- setting up food stalls from other states.
  • The focus must also be on development of underdeveloped, backward and naxal hit regions.

Such steps will help achieving the aim of Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat.

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