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Under The Veil Of Democracy

The opinion of the majority is important in Democracy, as the majority would tend to enjoy the authority, and take all the responsibilities for maintaining the political system. In India, people enjoy the right to cast their votes during elections, and other democratic rights. However, the Indian political outfits often do not (s)elect their leaders in a democratic manner. A few leaders, without being elected by their party members, make all the important decisions on behalf of their respective parties. Furthermore, some parties are run by some Families. Except the parties with Leftist leanings and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS, an Indian right-wing, Hindu nationalist, paramilitary volunteer organisation), almost all the political parties have accepted Familycracy or Dynastic Politics. Hence, Hero Worship has replaced Policy and Ideology, as far as functions of the Indian political outfits are concerned. Even after 76 years of Independence, the majority of the Indians still believe in devotion to a particular person or a family.

So, not-so-democratic parties act as guardians of the world’s largest democracy, in a way. It is evident in history that this sort of organisation cannot work in the long run, as blood relation or kinship is the sole eligibility criteria for choosing the party leadership, here. These parties do not bother about leadership qualities. As a result, principles, ideals, dedication, performance, knowledge, etc. get dissipated behind the banners of the corporate sector. Familycracy is contrary to democracy, and is also against the long-term interests of political outfits. The leadership of a particular Family has, it may be conjectured, ruined the Indian National Congress (INC), the oldest party in India.

5 Indian families that have converted Politics into Family Business (Source: daijiworld.com)

Democracy not only believes in the rule of the majority, but also emphasises on protecting the rights of the minority. Although the majority of the Indians are Hindus, the Muslims and other religious communities should enjoy equal rights (as per the Constitution of India). The Constitution clearly mentions that the Indian State should protect the rights of the minorities. In Democracy, the State takes the responsibility of protecting the rights of the minority, as well as protects the members of Opposition parties. Unfortunately, the Indian State has failed to perform its duties in recent times.

It is evident in history that the opinion of the majority often failed to protect members of the majority community, and to make the future of human civilisation a prosperous one. Not only Germany in 1932-33, there are many such examples in history. From Jesus Christ to Martin Luther King, many expressed their views, going against the opinion of the majority. Sometimes, a particular group of people made an attempt to magnify their own identity so that it could eclipse all other identities. Religion can eclipse Ethnicity, and Ethnicity can eclipse Class Position.

Most political parties in India are dynastic. However, some are more dynastic than others.

At times, the majority constructs an identity according to its own convenience. It helps the majority become a force, and enjoy power. Interestingly, Power not only brings Inspiration, but also Fear… the fear of losing power. The fear, mixed with the major ego of the majority, becomes an obstacle to protect the rights of the minority. Then, the recognised majority comes forward to suppress the voice of the minority. When there are no opponents, the majority seeks conflict, and starts finding oppositions within the majority. There is no respite from it, as it is almost a never-ending loop.

If the minority does not have the Right to Expression and if there is no Checks and Balances; then the voice of the majority becomes the voice of the party system. In case of a family-centric party, that voice becomes the voice of an individual. Then, the people can hear an autocratic tone, as Authoritarianism appears under the veil of Democracy. That is why the Right to Recall is so important. There is no reason to believe that this process can go on forever. Whoever is the winner today, shall be vanquished the day after.

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