Right to Development and Economic Framework

Its interesting to find out that although “Right to Development”, a recognized human right adopted first by the United Nations in 1986 (Declaration on the Right to Development), and later at 1993 Vienna World Conference on Human Rights (Uvin 41, 42), is now a broadly acclaimed notion in both the human rights and development economics arena; widespread disagreements still lurks its horizon as to how to achieve this right in a highly political world. Earlier marred by politics of the Cold War, CP rights remained more important than ESC rights, especially in the rich countries which dominate the global human rights movements (Uvin, 47), and later engulfed with the politics of theoretical and practical approach of best achieving these human rights objectives; we yet have to see a solid economic development framework that is acceptable to everyone. If the right to development is so close to human rights and human rights are universal (equal for all humans) then should everyone follow any particular approach to economic development or can we achieve the optimum results by following diverse development approaches? And which approach can provide us better results in achieving both ESC and CP human rights? I think, neither the thesis, antithesis nor the synthesis models (Professor Marks’s Lecture) of economic development alone can provide a comprehensive approach to development that also guarantees all human rights. Mere concentration on economic growth to achieve human rights for all is not the best strategy as noted by UNDP 2001 report, “Human development is about much more than the rise or fall of national incomes. It is about creating an environment in which people can develop their full potential and lead productive, creative lives in accord with their needs and interests” (Professor Marks’s Lecture). China and India, with different political and economic models are able to address different human rights issues through their development models and neither of them have been successful in achieving both ESC and CP human rights (Sen, 41- 43). I think a combination of ‘growth- mediated’ and ‘support-led’ (Sen, 46) policies can provide the answer to development experts in promoting human rights in any society, as experimented by social democracies.

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