“An enquiry into the past gives an insight into the ethos of a society and the psychology of its people. International humanitarian law has been an ever-growing discipline. In applying existing humanitarian law and shaping and developing it, in making potential law viable, a study of the traditional values of any constituent society is necessary.”

In an article published by the International Review of the Red Cross (IRRC No. 271, August 1989) Professor L. R. Penna explores “Written and Customary Provisions Relating to the Conduct of Hostilities and Treatment of Victims of Armed Conflicts in Ancient India”. He writes, “Two thousand years before Grotius, Rachel, or Ayala recalled Europe to humanitarianism, ancient Indians had a body of rules for governing the relations between the States of the sub-continent in the event of armed conflicts.”

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