"Asia and Africa today"
- is a scientificl monthly journal (in Russian)
of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Included in Russian Science Citation Index on
WoS platform, and EBSCO Publishing.
ISSN 0321-5075. Published since July 1957.

"Asia and Africa today" № 8 2020





Аuthor Alexandra L. SAFRONOVA
Dr.Sc. (History), Professor, Head, Department of South Asian History, Institute of Asian and African Studies, Lomonosov Moscow State University ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )

   The article raises the problem of the development of traditional elite groups existing in the transitional societies, and is focused on the problems of defining the ways of the development of former Princely states (or Native states) after their integration into newly created independent Indian state, revealing the reaction of princely community to republican political system versus the ideals of monarchy, as well as traditional religious values versus secularist conceptions of ruling in the first decades since independence Indian National Congress. The author traces the destinies of princely dynasties in contemporary India through the struggle of main political forces and the rise of the influence of Bharatiya Janata Party now in power. The article dwells on the problems of incorporation of representatives of princely dynasties into modern Indian society, its political party system and parliamentary traditions. The article shows the way in which traditional elites of South Asia managed to become a part of modernizing composite ruling stratum, though traditional social and political values prevail in the minds of the common population of the former territories of Princely states. The process of transformation of the attitude of Indian ruling circles to traditional elites of South Asia is revealed in the article through the analysis of reorganization of administrative system of India, reflected in the Constitution of the Republic of India. The article raises the question whether the princely dynasties of India can be estimated as a part of the existing legitimate political party system or they defend their interests through specially established organizations and strive to form counter-elites in Indian society.

Keywords: British India, India, Indian princely states, princely dynasties, integration of princely states, traditional elites
Pages 20-25