CHALLENGES TO DEMOCRACY
Q & A
Q1: What are the different types of challenges to a Democracy?
- Constitutional Design
- Federalism and its functioning (centralization vs decentralization)
- Working of institutions (executive and judiciary)
- Democratic rights
- Accommodation of diversity
- Political groups and organizations
- Challenge of Expansion of democracy
- foundational challenge of making the transition to democracy
- challenge of deepening of democracy to strengthen
- Different countries have different challenges.
Q2: What are the influences of Socio-economic Inequality on Indian democracy?
- Disinterest among common people mean less participation/
- Control over government by rich people and Industrial houses.
- Widening gap between rich and poor
- Promotes class interest.
- Unrest between the poor and the rich leads to tension.
Q3: What are political reforms?
Answer: The suggestions or proposals to address and overcome democracy challenges are collectively called political reforms or democracy reforms.
Q4: What are different political reforms that should be implemented in India?
- Legal and Constitutional reforms: Some the Acts are century old and needs to be amended as per the current needs.
- Administrative Reforms to corruption in the political circles and the bureaucracy.
- Universal Literacy
- Poverty Alleviation to provide wages and employment to landless and the poor.
- Elimination of Gender Discrimination through social-economic reforms.
- Redressing regional imbalances.
- Sustainable Development in terms of economic, social and environmental reforms.
- Improve quality of political parties by people’s participation.
Q5(Value Based): What do you mean by ‘Foundational Challenge” in Democracy? What values can help to overcome this challenge?
Answer: Foundational challenges in democracy are:
- Transition to democratic institutions from non-democratic regimes
- Separation of military from governing authority
- Establishing a sovereign and a functional state.
Q6: Why are elections a challenge to Indian democracy?
Answer: Contesting elections are very expensive. It costs lots of money. The only rich persons can contest elections. For the common man it is beyond his capacity to fund elections expenses. The government should think ways to minimise as well check the election expenditure. The government should also prepare budget for elections and provide means that any citizen (rich or poor) can contest.
Q7: What do you mean by 'Deepening of Democracy' as a challenge?
Answer: 'Deepening of democracy' is faced by every democracy in one form or another.
It involves strengthening of the institutions and practices of democracy. The ordinary people have different expectations from democracy in different societies.Therefore this challenge has different meanings in different parts of the world. It requires more of people’s participation and control and less control of rich people in making of the governmental decision.
Q8: If we redefine democracy out of political context, what could be its possible definitions?
Answer: The most popular definition of democracy is "Democracy is a government of the people, for the people, by the people". But this definition holds good in political context. But in social context or in our daily lives (operational context), it may be redefined as:
- The rulers elected by the people must take all the major decisions.
- Elections must offer a choice and opportunity to all the people to change the current rulers.
- this choice and opportunity should be available to all the people on an equal basis; and
- the exercise of this choice must lead to a government limited by basic rules of the constitution
and citizens’ rights.
Q9: What do you mean by ‘challenges’?
- A challenge is a difficulty that it carries within it.
- A challenge is not just any problem.
- We usually call only those difficulties a ‘challenge’ which are significant and which can be overcome.
- Once we can overcome a challenge, we can go up to a higher level than before.
Q10: What are the major categories of challenges that a democracy faces?
Answer : Three major categories of challenges that a democracy faces:
- Foundational challenge.
- Challenge of expansion.
- Challenge of deepening of democracy.