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How well has India’s democracy served its citizens since 1947?

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Published date
documents in English
5 pages
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  1. Introduction
  2. Their claims of the opponents
  3. The demolition of a 16th-century Muslim mosque
  4. The series of violent riots
  5. The extent to which India has served its citizens
  6. India's so-called failure to achieve true political or economic democracy
  7. It's successes
  8. Conclusion
  9. Bibliography

Since India's move to democracy in 1947, many have questioned the success, or lack thereof, of the democratization process, its advantages and detriments, the effect on society, and its role in religious conflict. There are contradictory and mixed assessments of the state of political, economic, and social democracy in India today. Some feel that no democracy is perfect, and despite its many imperfections, India has achieved democratic successes that ought to be envied by many so-called emerging democracies in Latin America and Asia - not to mention the failing ones in Africa. It can be acknowledged that governing 900 million people by democratic means is a major accomplishment.

[...] An optimistic democracy advocate could argue that in the future, India's political system will benefit its economy in the long run. India's economy is very open and becoming much more service-oriented - a sign of a developing nation at large. Furthermore, the impending information revolution will largely benefit India due to the nature of its technology and market. Conversely, a pessimistic opponent to the claims of India's success might argue that the very system of democracy and political framework is on the verge of collapse. [...]

[...] Jawaharlal Nehru believed in a rational, secular, socialist state embodying European-style nationalism and bureaucratic centralization Regarding the extent to which India has served its citizens, answers vary from at all' to ?very much so'. Is India succeeded as a democracy? Has the democracy benefited its citizens? story of contemporary Indian politics is often recounted, in its popular and academic versions, in terms of an impending catastrophe: it is the story of the decline and collapse of the democratic edifice, of growing apathy and widespread indifference, and of a resultant loss of popular legitimacy for the political system.? (Yadav, 140) When we think about whether or not India's democracy has benefited it's citizens, we must ask which citizens, for it has most certainly benefited the rich while often overlooking the poor. [...]

[...] ?That the recent Indian experience is almost exactly the reverse of the rules of established democracies calls for rethinking the received models of democracy and democratization.? (Yadav, 140) Experts and proponents of the current democratic model declare India has developed over the past 50 years since Indian independence to become closer and closer to the working Western definition of a vibrant, healthy liberal democracy. Although the operation of India's gigantic and multi-layered system of political pluralism frequently presents a chaotic appearance, it has survived and evolved over decades. [...]

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