Union Council of Ministers

The Union Council of Ministers is a decision-making executive authority in India composed of the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, and other Cabinet Ministers and Ministers of State. It is a Council responsible to the House of People (namely the lower House called the Lok Sabha) and if a Minister is disqualified from serving as a member of the House, they are also disqualified from their ministerial post.


CHAIR: Nafisa Ahmed

Hi! I'm currently a sophomore at Princeton (but originally from the great state of Texas!) and plan on concentrating in Politics with a focus on Political Economy. On campus, I'm involved with Princeton South Asian Theatrics, Naacho South Asian Dance Company, Princeton Students for Reproductive Justice, and Model UN (big surprise), but in my free time, enjoy finding the best Insta-worthy spots around, trying new food and quickly getting tired of named new food, and arguing with friends about the order in which cereal and milk should be organized. I've been doing MUN since I was a freshman in high school, and have loved continuing it at Princeton both competitively and through hosting. South Asian politics and diplomacy-related issues have always fascinated me, especially through its pertinent application to my identity as a Bengali-American, and I look forward to moderating a committee centered around such topics.  

Email: naahmed@princeton.edu

Send Position Papers To: TBA

topic a: Hindu Nationalism in a Multicultural State

In a postcolonial and rapidly growing India, Hindu nationalism is growing faster than ever. With the election of Narendra Modi as Prime Minister and the leading influence of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Indian culture and politics largely is coming to reflect the idea that the Hindu faith should play a pivotal role in defining state and society. In a multicultural nation where secularism was hailed by founding fathers as a keystone feature of the country, and where multiple religions, ethnicities, and languages must coexist to move forward, this trend has raised several alarms both at home and outside. For example, the powerful Hindu organization Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has been accused of promoting chauvinist and intolerant ideals as members have decried the pluralist religious history of India, especially inclined against Christians and Muslims. The membership of the Union Council of Ministers is encouraged to respond to these trends using their respective leadership in topic areas in order to create a more peaceful and inclusive India for all.

TOPIC B: Gendered Vulnerability as a Product of Inequality

In recent years, much attention has been dedicated to the way gender is related to inequality, leading to the emergence of a strong consensus that women are disproportionately affected by poverty. Due to a lack of rights, women are often stuck in menial jobs, often must also attend to unpaid domestic tasks, are excluded from economic decision-making, and are less likely to have access to their own form of cash income. While India has grown in many areas, much work remains necessary to address the various ways women and other disadvantaged groups unevenly are affected by socioeconomic inequality. The membership of the Union Council of Ministers is encouraged to think critically about the ways in which the Council can construct an integrative framework that takes into account the cultural and economic roles Indian women play while paying special attention to sector-specific trends, regional variations, and both government and NGO efforts in this area.