Keyword : Democracy

What Chennai voter wants: above all, the odd-even scheme!

When people of Chennai go out to vote for the next state government on May 16, what will be the issues top most in their minds? Curiously, they will be thinking less about jobs, ‘good governa

How consumer friendly our states are

Democracy is defined as “government of the people, by the people and for the people”. Our well established system of elections satisfies to a great extent the definition “of and b

A lesson for Indian politicians from an unusual kids` parliament

Ili, 14, is out on the street busy canvassing for her 10-year old friend Naila Ayaz, who is a candidate for a unique children’s parliament. Just like seasoned politicians, they make promises

Carnivalesque columnist

Shiv Visvanathan rightly prefers to be introduced as a social science nomad. He is an itinerant thinker, wandering across boundaries of academic disciplines and professions. An anthology of

Case for synchronising election cycles

Since public memory is woefully short, it may not be common knowledge that general elections for the Lok Sabha and state assemblies were held simultaneously initially – in 1951, 1957, 1962 an

Possibilities and challenges of simultaneous elections

The debate over holding simultaneous elections in the country, i.e. conducting both general and state elections at the same time, has of lately taken flight. Last year, the Standing Committee on Pe

Simultaneous polls will reduce expenditure

Prime minister Narendra Modi made the suggestion for holding simultaneous Lok Sabha and assembly elections at the all-party meeting ahead of the parliament session. The Standing Comm

Civvies won’t march, fatigues won’t scribe

Civil-military relations is not a happy phrase because it suggests a basic dichotomy and opposition between the civilian and the military perspectives. Differences in viewpoints give rise to typica

ADR to launch a campaign for clean politics

The Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) which has been working towards increasing transparency and accountability in political and electoral system is taking forward its advocacy to another le

192 newly elected MLAs have criminal backgrounds

A staggering 192 newly elected MLAs in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Manipur and Goa have declared criminal cases against themselves. Also, 540 of the new MLAs are crorepatis.

The secret of Modi’s success

Here is a proposition: Narendra Modi is the top  thinker, the top intellectual of our times. Is that an exaggerated claim? Not altogether. Here’s why. After Brexit and aft

The magic of Moditva

The well-turned-out officials had reached the sachivalaya in Gandhinagar on time, believing it would be another routine meeting with the chief minister. As soon as they had settled in, the

VP candidate Gopalkrishna Gandhi on fear and democracy

Former West Bengal governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi, who is Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson, doesn’t hesitate to call a spade a spade. He once said that fear rules India and at another time poi

What India needs to do to finally become a superpower

For the past 25 years, India has been rising in stature. It is continually called an upcoming superpower but has been unable to reach the promised status. India’s importance in the world is m

Ascent and dissent

Rahul Gandhi has become the president of India’s grand old party. Nobody else wanted to, since none contested. By any parameter, it is not a welcome move in a democracy. Regardless of your vi

Majoritarianism rules!

Just the facts first. In the Gujarat assembly elections, the BJP did not field a single Muslim candidate. No one expected it to; and its leaders make no bones about ignoring the nine percent Muslim

25 Years of Panchayati Raj: Mapping the road ahead

The Panchayati Raj institution (PRI) is celebrating the 25th anniversary of its inception this year. The institution was formalized through the 73rd amendment to the constitution in 1992 with the p

A vote against democracy?

Democracy, in its broad sense, tolerates dissent, allows freedom of expression and hence diversity of views by protecting minority views and human rights. The functioning of any democracy is charac

Empowering citizens is better than entitlements

Is nature more than just good and evil? Is civilisation bad? Does nature perpetuate inequality? Does civilisation perpetuate inequality? These questions have been debated by philosophers since th

The why not game

A few years ago, we could have suggested, why not do away with `1,000 notes. We could have also suggested that the planning commission is anyway founded on an executive fiat and can be done away wi

Why not allow people to propose laws?

Democracy is people’s own rule, but the billion-plus people of India cannot gather in one place to frame laws. So we elect representatives who, theoretically speaking, draft laws on our behal

Indian republic @70: Constitutional vision vs. social reality

This 26th of January earmarks the 70th anniversary of the Indian republic. In the 69 years of journey, India has made considerable progress in democratising the society at large. The Constitution o

Kashmir conundrum and Pakistan’s democracy deficit

The Kashmir conundrum was never below the radar, but the Pulwama attack has once again put terrorism and foreign-aided separatism on top of the national agenda. The ghastly killing of the CRPF pers



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