Saagar is a historian of modern India whose chief interest lies in studying the dynamics of state-society relationship in central and eastern India. For his doctoral research, Saagar enquired into the emerging discourse on ‘scheduling’ of predominantly tribal areas in the late colonial period. His thesis is an intellectual and constitutional history of the tribal question in India. It explains how despite having serious reservations, the Indian nationalists agreed to incorporate the categories of ‘partially excluded’ and ‘excluded’ areas in the Constitution of India as Fifth and Sixth Schedules albeit with significant changes in the colonial model. For his future research, Saagar hopes to focus on the political dynamics in the 1940’s, subsequently extending his work into the independent India. He is also interested in biographies and hopes to write one in the near future.
At JSLH, besides the foundation course in History, Saagar has taught courses on ‘Tribes in Indian History’, ‘Environmental History of South Asia’ and ‘Minorities in Modern India’. He is also designing a course on ‘Forests, Frontiers and the People without History’ which will take up cross-comparative examples of nomadic, pastoral and hunting-gathering communities from Asia, Africa and America.’