Democracy in India, according to Abraham Lincoln, is measured as a two – thirds democracy only. In India, we have a government of the people and by the people but it is not for the people. For a full – fledged democracy in India, there are three things need. Firstly, the citizens must be educated and literate to understand the politics so the government is really effective. Secondly, the government must be transparent. And lastly, the citizens must have the freedom of information and access to that information.
If Indian democracy has to be really on these lines we have to build the National Information Infrastructure. Every public call office must provide access to the data with the government both at the Centre and in the states freely, and also, all this data must be available in Indian languages. But to achieve this meaningfully and also the type of growth rates the Asian Tigers achieved, despite the recent temporary setback on the currency fron,t education is the key. A nation which is half illiterate cannot face the challenges of the 21st century. Education is the route for a variable democracy as well as the economic development of the country. We need to focus on the spread of the primary education for all the masses living in remote areas of the country. But in today’s scenario, it is seen that there is a close linkage between the local politicians and vested interests. Starting from the appointment of the teachers and their transfers to the required places of interest, it is evident that in many states, primary education and perhaps the secondary education too is highly politiczed. We find that even though attractive salaries are given to the primary school teachers, many of the single teacher schools are not at all effective in creating interest in people towards need of education. At the same time, there are reports that even the poor parents want their children to go to public school and study. They are prepared to pay even higher fees for the same.
In a democratic country like India, nothing happens unless there is a political will. The government must think definitely at this point. The Indian democracy will get organized only under two circumstances. The first one is if there is acrisis. The second situation is when there is a perceived and immediate advantage in terms of electoral gains. After all, unemployment is a national problem and to the extent we are able to provide avenues for removing unemployment, it will be a politically popular vote gathering measure. It is seen that under the various employment generation and poverty alleviation schemes like Prime Minister’s Rojgar Yojana and the Integrated Rural Development Programme, thousands of lakhs of rupees are being spent. Instead of spending such huge amounts without any effective results, the educated youth can become teachers and give tuitions to the poor masses in the villages and they can be given the same amount available under various schemes. In this way, the funds will be better utilized and there will also be a direct link between efforts for the removal of unemployment and illiteracy. All this would be best to establish a good democracy in India.
Parliamentary democracy all over the world has become largely Prime ministerial systems of governance and are in effect quasi presidential. Prime ministers now tend to be a great deal more than first among equals. As an inevitable consequence of rise of political parties as the key to electoral systems, the focus of real power has shifted from parliament to the cabinet and from the cabinet to the Prime Minister. Today bureaucracy has wielded real power behind what may be called the cloak of cabinet dictatorship. Historically, the greatest contribution of our struggle for independence was to give India a strong political and democratic sense of nationhood. The constitution of India was based on that sense of one nation. That is why the preamble of the constitution speaks of “We the people of India” with a singular solidarity; that is why the lok sabha and the rajya sabha are based on demographic proportions and not on the basis that the India union is some confederal alliance of states; that is why Union Parliament was meant to be the grand inquest of the nation. That is why the distribution of powers between the states and the centre tends to learn decisively in favour of the Centre.
Over the years, it has been endeavoured to find functionally better democratic federal balance without impairing the one nation concept. The institution of the prime minister and his or her election by the majority in the lok sabha is an institutional expression of that concept. Freedom of inter-state commerce throughout India and freedom of movement and residence anywhere in India is the hallmark of our common citizenship.