This is a post that I have written as part of my application to become a facebook beta tester.
While it may sound absurd to discuss disadvantages of Democracy in the World’s largest democracy, it seems there if some weight in the arguments that democracy has not been entirely good for this nation. In a nation where about 40% (400 Millions) of the population is illiterate and about 25% of the population (250 Millions) live below poverty line which is less than a dollar a day, one can only imagine the kind of governments thrown up when this 40% votes.
In the last General elections held in India, in 2009, only 59% of the eligible population voted which given the demographics of the country is about 30% of the total population. Of these 30% voters 30% voted for the UPA which therefore won and came to power. The UPA actually received about 153 million votes which are actually only 10% of the population. So in a country where 10% votes can win you power and you have 40% people who are illiterates and below the poverty line it may be assumed and without too much of risk that vote bank politics and corruption would rule the agendas and not development and international relations.
This is one big disadvantage which mothers a lot of other vices in the system. According to a lot of estimated the educated middle class votes the least in terms of percentages and therefore the leaders are chosen by the parties based on caste, creed and other such factors that appeal to the poor population. The government thus formed may more often than not work for its own welfare and not nation building, therefore giving a freehand to corrupt practices in politics and bureaucracy. And this has happened in India for the last 60 years and is still happening. People are asking votes on the name of caste, religion, and other such sentimental issues rather than development and other rational issues.
With various parties having stronghold in various regions, and the lack of a strong single national party, Indian government has become a slave of coalition politics which has been a deterrent to a lot of progressive steps.
While there are other such arguments, the fact remains that India is the largest democracy and will remain so for a long time to come. If the political system focuses on getting votes by delivering in development, the numbers are in India’s favor and can therefore pave the way for her to become the superpower that she yearns to become.