Recently, a well-known intellectual has trampled on democracy insisting that the system should be wrapped up and whoever takes its name should not only be shot-dead but also the price of the bullet should also be recovered from his heirs. Those who hold such views should either be sent to land of Hejaz at Government’s expense as in the old days, or they should be forced to quarantine, as such views are completely against public interest. But the level of tolerance in our society is that much high. Such people will be tolerated by giving benefit of intellectual fallacy, which is quite common in view of our objective circumstances. One party would come to power and the other would pour water on its foundations. Through constitutional tactics and protests, the opponent’s breath would be suffocated and the country would be pushed towards early elections. The Charter of Democracy provided an opportunity for reform, but instead of passing the fruits of the democratic system to the grassroots level, the dynastic parties used it to serve their own ends. Now, if a part of the country’s intelligentsia has turned against democracy altogether, then it is not their fault at all. Blame it on the ignorance that afflicts us because of centuries of external domination and consequent slavery. Seventy-five years of independence have also failed to dispel the darkness for the reason that the very concept of freedom has been tarnished. The pro-imperialist elite are not allowing patriotism to enter the realm of passion. Ideological confusions have been created in such a way that it has become difficult to differentiate between right and wrong. The question of the failure of democracy should not have arisen in a country which came into being through a democratically run independence movement. Democracy is not a scripture coming down from heaven. It is a man-made system that determines the peaceful transfer of power. Democracy provides a system of decision-making and accountability so that the rulers stay on the right path remembering that they represent the people not the vested interests. In order to reap benefits of democracy, its three pre-requisites are worth mentioning. First, the source of sovereignty is the people. Second, all citizens are equal regardless of color, race or creed. Third, there will be no restrictions on regional trade. Go through the constitution and analyze the foreign policy, we have gone somewhere else in the name of democracy. A state’s sole objective is to preserve human dignity in its confines through promoting freedom and dispensing justice among its citizens. But if it takes sides and prefers one religious community, sect or ethnic group over the others then it not only violates the principle of equality and the universal notion of citizenship but also erodes the foundation of justice so vital for its survival. We have a lot of ethnic groups. Three major religions have grown up in the region. Sectarianism, tribalism and communalism are also matter of concern. Democracy is a very appropriate system of government in an ethnically, linguistically and culturally diverse country like India provided its requirements are met. If, after centuries of slavery, freedom had been achieved and at the same time a system of Government had been found, it was our duty to strengthen its foundations. That is to say, they would try to make it a real and functional state rather than putting it on a destructive path.
Why to blame democracy?