Odisha State Board CHSE Odisha Class 12 Political Science Solutions Unit 1 Democracy in India Short Answer Questions.
CHSE Odisha 12th Class Political Science Unit 1 Democracy in India Short Answer Questions
Short Questions And Answers
Define democracy. Why democracy cannot be defined only in political context?
Democracy is defined as a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and is exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodic free elections. In essence, democracy is a form of government which is run by the elected representatives of the people.
Describe the essential conditions for a successful democracy.
The definition of democracy is incomplete unless it is defined in social and individual contexts as well. In the present age, it means more than a mere form of government. In its comprehensive form democracy means,
- a form of government
- a type of state,
- a pattern of social system,
- a design of economic order
- a way of life and culture.
Therefore, when we say Indian democracy, we mean not only that its political institutions and processes are democratic but also that the Indian society and every Indian citizen is democratic, reflecting basic democratic values of equality, liberty, fraternity, secularism and justice in social sphere and individual behaviour.
What are the major challenges the Indian democracy faces? How these challenges are opportunities to make India an effective democratic system?
A system can be termed as a genuine democracy only when it fulfils
(a) political conditions as follows:
- Having a Constitution that vests supreme power in the people and protects fundamental rights, such as equality, liberty of thought and expression, belief, movement, communication and association.
- Having universal adult franchise as the basis of electing representatives
- Having a responsible government in which the executive is answerable to the legislature and the legislature to the people and
(b) social and economic conditions as follows:
- The system ensuring social development that is in tune with democratic values and norms reflecting equality of social status, social security and social welfare and
- The system facilitating a situation where the fruits of economic development reach all and especially the poor and deprived sections of the society.
1. Illiteracy, inequality and poverty adversely affect the functioning of Indian democracy,
- Illiterate citizens are not able to play their roles effectively and exercise meaningfully their right to vote which is an individual expression of the power of the people. Literacy enables citizens to be aware of various issues, problems, demands, and interests in the country, be conscious of the principles of liberty and equality of all and ensure that the representatives elected by them truly represent all the interests in the society,
- Poverty is perhaps the greatest bane of democracy. It is the root cause of all kinds of deprivations and inequalities and is the state of denial of opportunities to people to lead a healthy and fulfilling life.
2. Yes, the popular entertainment channels and films generally depict gender discrimination. In fact, the serials on television channels are reinforcing the prevailing patriarchal system showing females playing traditional roles of mothers, sisters, wives and daughters. It is true that a few of them question the traditional roles, but those also somehow reflect gender discrimination.
3. Caste System: The most detrimental and inhuman example of the prevailing caste system is the practice of untouchability which is continuing in different covert and overt ways in spite of the constitutional ban imposed on it.
- The Dalits still bear the brunt of discrimination and deprivation. This has led to segregation of so called low castes, depriving them of education and other social benefits. The second example relates to politicization of caste system. Casteism has become notorious as a strategy of exploitation of caste consciousness for narrow political gains.
- The caste system acts against the roots of democracy. Communalism: It disrupts quite often the smooth process of co-existence in a multi-religious Indian society Communal riots happening in the country since independence have been dangerous for peace order and social harmony. Secondly the misuse of religion by fundamentalist people during elections and even in other situations has always been proved to be counter-productive.
4. Although development process in the country aims alt growth and development of all regions, the regional disparities and imbalances continue to exist. Existence and continuation of regional inequalities in terms of differences in per capita income, literacy rates, state of health and educational infrastructure and services, population situation and levels of industrial and agricultural development both among States and within a State create a feeling of neglect, deprivation and discrimination.
5. The influence of muscle power in Indian politics has been a fact of life for a long time. Political parties and candidates do not hesitate in seeking the help of criminal elements to dominate the election scene in India. Earlier in the 1960’s, the criminals were content by covertly helping the politician win the election so that they could in turn get protection from him. But the roles have now been reversed. It is the politicians who now bank on the support of the criminals for protection.
6. One of the major reasons of increase of political violence has been the emergence of serious conflict of interests between higher and middle castes as an outcome of agricultural development, abolition of zamindari system, and developments like green revolution and white revolution. These have led to aggressive competition for political power which many a time leads to violence. Another reason is the backlash of the higher castes against the growing awareness and assertion of their rights by the lower castes, particularly the Scheduled Castes and the lowest backward castes. Moreover, violence has been associated with demands for separate States, re-organization of States or adjustment of State boundaries. As we observe, the Telangana Movement in Andhra Pradesh and Bodo Movement in Assam often turned violent. Violence has also been used quite frequently during industrial strikes, farmers’ movements, students’ agitations, and a number of other civil disobedience campaigns.
1. To attain the goal of universal literacy a nation-wide programme known as Saaksltar
Bharat is being implemented. Moreover, the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is a flagship programme for the universalization of elementary education for children between 6-14 years of age. Besides, the Parliament of India in 2009 passed Right to Education Act through which education has become a fundamental right of all children in the age group of 6-14 years. For poverty alleviation, two kinds of programmes are being implemented:
- Programmes to lift beneficiaries above poverty line by providing them with productive assets or skills or both so that they can employ themselves usefully and earn greater income, and
- Programmes to provide temporary wage employment for the poor and the landless. Public Distribution System (PDS) contributes towards meeting people’s basic food needs, the Integrated Rural Development Programme (IRDP) provides rural households below the poverty line with credit to purchase income-generating assets, the Jawahar Rbzgar Yojana (JRY), provides more than 700 million person days of work a year. Moreover, TRYSEM (Training Rural Youth for Self Employment) was started to provide technical skills to the rural youth and to help them to get employment.
2. Besides the State-specific efforts for reducing intra-State regional disparities, a number of Centrally Sponsored Programmes have been in operation for the last two to three decades for taking care of specific aspects of back wardness of such regions. Some of the major programmes are:
- the Tribal Development Programme,
- the Hill Area Development Programme,
- the Border Area Development Programme,
- the Western Ghat Development Programme,
- the Drought Prone Area Programme, and
- the Desert Development Programme.
3. For administrative reforms, the following recommendations need to be implemented:
- to make administration accountable and citizen friendly,
- to build its capacity for quality governance,
- to orient administration for promoting peoples’ participation, decentralization and devolution of powers,
- to make administrative decision-making process transparent,
- to improve the performance and integrity of the public services,
- to reinforce ethics in administration, and
- to inculcate readiness for e-governance. For judicial reforms, the steps that are to be taken are as follows:
(a) Simplification of Rules and Procedures,
(b) Repealing Out-dated Laws,
(c) Increase in the Judge Population Ratio,
(d) Time-bound filling of Vacant Posts in Judiciary, Transparency in Appointment, Promotion and Transfer of Judges,
(e) Judicial Accountability and
(f) Transparency of Court Proceedings.
4. Sustainable development is a pattern of resource use that aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for the future generations. When the development is human-centred and directed towards improvement of quality of life of all the people, it has to be focused on removal of poverty, ignorance, discrimination, disease and unemployment.
All these steps will strengthen Indian democracy.
1. Participation in a democratic polity is not confined simply to participation in elections. A vital form of participation comes through membership of political parties and more importantly, active membership in independent non-governmental organizations, that are known as “civil society organizations.” Civil Society Organizations, represent a variety of interests of different groups: women, students, farmers, workers, doctors, teachers, business owners, religious believers and human rights activists.
2. Citizens have to make the democratic system responsive and responsible. They are needed to ensure that the Parliamentarians, Members of State Legislatures and their representatives in Panchayati Raj and Municipal Institutions are accountable. The instruments created by Right to Information Act, 2005 in our country enable citizens to play their role, effectively. Citizens must watch carefully how their political leaders and representatives use their powers, and to express their own opinions and interests.
What is JGSY?
Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY) is a programme for the creation of rural economic infrastructure with employment generation as a secondary objective. The programme is implemented by the village panchayats and since its inception it has generated 27 crore men-days of employment each year. The Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS) covers 1,778 drought-prone, desert, tribal arid hill area blocks. The programme was designed to provide employment in the form of manual work in the lean agricultural season.
What is Sustainable development?
lt is a pattern causing resources that aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for future generations to come. The term was used by the Bruntland Commission (1987) which coined what has become the most often-quoted definition of sustainable development as development that “meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
What is MNREGA?
The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) is being implemented to enhance the livelihood security of people in rural areas by guaranteeing hundred days of wage-employment in a financial year to a rural household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work.
What are Goal and Objectives of National Policy for Empowerment of Women?
The goal of this Policy is to bring about the advancement, development and empowerment of women. Specifically, the objectives of this Policy include:
- Creating an environment through positive economic and social policies for full development of women to enable them to realize their full potential;
- Equal access to participation and decision making of women in social, political and economic life of the nation;
- Equal access to women to health care, quality education at all levels, career and vocational guidance, employment, equal remuneration, occupational health and safety, social security and public office, etc.;
- Strengthening legal systems aimed at elimination of all forms of discrimination against women.
- Elimination of discrimination and all forms of violence against women and the girl child.
It is a form of government in which the people are the source of all power. It is exercised by them either directly or indirectly through their elected representatives.
What is indirect democracy?
Indirect democracy means the government formed by the elected representatives of the people. It governs on the basis of public opinion.
What is direct democracy?
In direct democracy the people directly take part in the law-making. They can reject any law in a referendum and propose bills for law-making under initiative.
What are the modern devices of Direct Democracy?
The major modem devices of direct democracy are referendum and initiative. By these two the people participate in the process of law-making.
What are the three dimensions of Democracy?
(a) Political Dimension, (b) Social Dimension and (c) Economic Dimension.
What is Referendum?
Referendum is the power of the people to .approve or reject any law passed by the legislature. They can demand referendum on any law and then vote to reject or approve it by a majority.
What is Initiative?
Initiative is right of the people to propose measures for law making. They can submit bills or demands for law-making on which the legislature has to act.
Write two most essential features of a Democracy.
(1) Faith in popular sovereignty and mass political participation and (2) Faith in liberalism and equal rights of all the people.
What is Recall?
Recall is the right of the people to recall an elected representative in case it has not been acting according to the dictates of public opinion or who is misusing his authority as their representative.
What is the merits of initiative?
(1) A law initiated by the people represents popular will. (2) It positively involves people in the law-making process.
What is the meaning of Plebiscite?
It means to know the opinion of the people over any particular issue. It is a democratic way of knowing public opinion on any national issue.
What is popular sovereignty?
Popular sovereignty means supremacy i.e. supreme power of the people. It is the very basis of a democracy.
What is a political party?
Political party is a large political organisation of people.
What is the most major objective of a political party?
The most major objective of a political party is secure political power in the state.
For which purpose political parties use political power?
Political parties use political power for securing national interests of the country.
Which party is called the major party?
Which secures a majority of seats in a legislature is called the majority party.
What is Bi-party system?
When a state has only two or two major and some other political parties, the system is known as bi-party system.
What is multiparty system?
When a large number of active political parties are involved in politics is known as multiparty system.
Which party system is not held to be really democratic?
One party system is not hold to be really democratic.
By whom elections are basically fought?
By political parties elections are basically fought.
What is meant by limited government?
When the government of the state enjoys defined powers and a fined hence it is called a limited government. The constitution of the state defines the powers of such government and it always works within such limits.
What are the basic principles of Democracy?
The basic principles of democracy are:
- Faith in popular sovereignty.
- Right to equality.
- Right to freedom.
- Representative and responsible government.
- Secret voting and free and fair election system.
- Decentralisation of powers.
- Limited government.
- Rule of law.
- Independence of judiciary.
What is universal adult franchise?
When all the adult citizens, both men and women enjoy the right to vote, the system is called universal Adult Franchise. In every modem democratic system, the principle of universal Adult Franchise is essential.
What is direct democracy?
In this form of democracy, people have the right and opportunity to directly participate in law-making. They have the power to approve or disapprove the laws passed by the legislature.
What is Indirect Democracy?
Indirect democracy in which political power is used by the elected representative of the people. The elected representatives use the legislative and executive authority of the state for a fixed tenure.
What are the fundamental features of Liberal Democracy?
The fundamental features of liberal democracy are:
- Faith in the ideology of liberalism and the principle of sovereignty of the people.
- Duly elected representative, limited and responsible government.
- Accountability of all public servants and power-holders.
- Transparency in the working of Government.
- Supremacy of public opinion.
- Mass political participation.
What is social inequality?
Social inequality refers to the ways in which socially-defined categories of persons (according to characteristics such as gender, age, class and authenicity) are differentially positioned with regard to access to a variety of social ‘goods’ such as the labour market and other sources of income.
How the Indian Constitution grants constitutional and legal equality?
Indian society continues to be a male dominated society. Women of India continue to live with certain inequalities and exploitations. The constitution of India grants equal fundamental rights to all the citizens. It declares that there is to be no discrimination on the basis of genders. Legally women enjoy equal opportunities for development as are being enjoyed by men.
What is the steps which Indian democracy must takes for eliminating social inequalities?
Indian democracy must take several strong steps for eliminating social inequalities.
(1) To check caste based discrimination and violence through stronger laws,
policies and actions.
(2) To promote secularism as the way of life by suitably reforming the Indian
(3) To work for securing the empowerment of women by all.
(4) All women organisations like All India Women Conference and all non
government organisation (NGOs) must organise campaigns against social evils, particularly against casteism.
(5) Since social inequalities are mostly the products of ignorance and mad love for some age-old tradition, all the people must make concerted and collective efforts for creating widespread awareness against social evils.
(6) Our educational institutions, mass media and interest groups should try to build a strong public opinion against all social inequalities.
(7) Indian democracy must ensure that all the people should get encouraged to realise their responsibilities towards the nation.
What is Regionalism?
Regionalism means the love for one’s area of living in a particular region to which one belongs. It is something quite natural. The inhabitants of Punjab love the language and culture and there is nothing unusual or wrong about it. To secure the interests of their state is a natural objective before all the inhabitants. This type of regionalism has to be accepted as a natural feature of a federal polity like India.
What is political violence?
Violence is being used by some people, their groups and organizations for achieving their narrow political goals, it is called political violence. Several organizations, groups and individuals unfortunately believe that their political system or government will never respond to their political demands and consequently, they believe that use of violence is needed and justified for securing their political objectives.
What is Naxalism?
The terms Naxal and Naxalism owe their origin to the village Naxal and Naxalbari movement (West Bengal). Naxalism or Naxal violence began as a violent opposition to the established order. It was basically a peasant and tribal movement against the existing socio-economic political system. It wanted to overthrow the established order by violent means. The Naxal movement had its birth in the late 1960s in the Naxalbari area of West Bengal.
What steps are needed for controlling Naxal violence?
India government decided to use Indian Army and paramilitary forces for neutralizing and controlling the Naxal violence in the affected states.
The steps are needed for controlling Naxal violence :
(1) Modernisation, effective deployment and use of law and order enforcement
(2) All necessary and well-designed systematic steps must be undertaken for the protection and promotion of the socio-economic welfare.
(3) Participation of all sections of people, particularly the poor peoples.
(4) Securing of sustainable development must be pursued as a priority.
(5) More employment opportunities must be created for poor, tribal people.
(6) Counter-Insurgency operations against the Naxals must be well-planned on efficiently executed.
Give one definition of a political party.
Gilchrist writes “A political party may be defined as an orgnised group of citizens who profess to share the same political views and who, by acting as a political unit, try to control the government”.
What is One Party System?
One party system is also called single party system. In it there is only one main political party which is continuously in power. One party system is held to be undemocratic.
Give three essential features of a political party.
Three essential features of a political party are:
(1) A fairly large organised political association of people.
(2) Agreement on basic principles on ideology.
(3) Faith in peaceful and constitutional means.
Define Bi-party System.
Party system exists in a state where there are either only two nearly equal popular political parties or two main political parties. However, there are also present some union or less influential political parties. People have the freedom to form their political parties but in actual practice there are present only two major political parties in . the country.
Define Multiparty System.
Multiparty system means the presence of several equally influential political parties in the country. Several political parties are actively involved in the political process elections are contested by a large number of political parties.
Name some countries which have Multiparty System.
Some countries which have multiparty system are: India, Switzerland, Japan, Italy and France.
What are the six main functions of political parties?
The six main functions of political parties are:
(1) Formation of public opinion.
(2) Act as agencies of political education.
(3) Valuable agencies for recruitment of leaders.
(4) Formulation of Demands.
(5) Aggregation of public demands and taking these to the government.
(6) Formation of government or acting as opposition parties.
What is the merits of political parties?
The merits of political parties are:
(1) Essential democratic actors of politics.
(2) Political parties are a source of rational unit.
(3) Political parties in opposition keep the government under check.
(4) Political parties are vital links between the people and their government.
(5) Parties act an agencies for the formulation of public opinion.
What is the demerits of political parties?
The demerits in political parties are:
(1) Political parties are a source of divisions among the people.
(2) Political parties cannot reflect and clarify public opinion.
(3) Political parties are always dominated by rich people.
(4) Political parties are a source of disharmony and unhealthy opposition.
(5) Political parties are a source of dirty party politics and delays in law-making.
(6) Often give more importance to their interests over the national interests.
What is the role of political parties in a democracy?
Political parties are essential for every democratic state. These act as the basic actors in politics. These continuously participate in the political process. In particular, these always contest elections. When a political party or an alliance of some political parties gets a majority, it forms the government and other parties act as opposition parties.
What is the meaning of “No party No Democracy”?
Political parties are totally essential for the functioning of democracy. Without political parties elections cannot be held, government-making cannot be really done, there can be no real check in the exercise of government power, public opinion remains ambiguous and people do not get a real political party, no democratic government can really function. The absence of political parties means the presence of unreal democracy.