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Key Elements of Democratic Government - Polity NCERT Notes for UPSC

Jan 20, 2023

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There are certain key elements that influence the working of a democratic government, such as people's participation, the resolution of conflict and equality and justice. To know more about them, let’s dive deep into this blog and upgrade your IAS exam preparation. 

Key Elements of Democratic Government

  • Participation

Through voting in elections, people elect leaders to represent them which take decisions on behalf of the people. In doing so it is assumed that they will keep in mind the voices and interests of the people.

Other ways of participating in democracy

  • The ways include dharnas, rallies, strikes, signature campaigns etc. 
  • Things that are unfair and unjust are brought forward. Newspapers, magazines and TV play a role in discussing government issues and responsibilities.
  • Example- In August 2005, people expressed their disapproval when a particular government increased rate of electricity. They took out rallies and also organised a signature campaign. The government finally listened to the people's opinion and withdrew the increase. 
  • Social movements: As not all sections of people are actually able to participate, they participate by organising themselves into social movements that seek to challenge the government and its functioning. Members of the minority community, dalits, adivasis, women and others are often participate in this manner.
  • Need to Resolve Conflict

Conflicts occur when people of different cultures, religions, regions or economic backgrounds do not get along with each other, or when some among them feel they are being discriminated against. 

Useful Links for IAS Preparation:

Macroeconomics- Indian Economy Notes: NCERT Notes UPSCElection and Representation- NCERT Notes UPSCCold War: Origin, Causes and Phases- NCERT Notes UPSCPopulation Composition- NCERT Notes UPSC
National Income Accounting- NCERT Notes UPSCFundamental Rights in the Indian Constitution- NCERT Notes UPSCHuman Geography: Nature and Scope- NCERT Notes UPSCBricks, Beads and Bones The Harappan Civilisation- NCERT Notes UPSC

Responsibility of government in resolving conflicts

  • Religious processions and celebrations can sometimes lead to conflicts. The governments, particularly the police, play an important role in getting representatives of concerned communities to meet and try and arrive at a solution. 
  • Rivers too can become a source of conflict between states such as Cauvery water dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu etc. In such scenario, the central government has to step in and see that a fair distribution is worked out for both states.
  • Equality and Justice
  • Equality and justice are inseparable
  • Justice can only be achieved when people are treated equally e.g. abolition of untouchability etc.
  • The government makes special provisions for groups within society that are unequal.
  • For example; in our society there is a general tendency to value and care for the boy child more than the girl child. In this context the government steps in to promote justice by providing special provisions that can enable girls to overcome the injustice through fees waiver programs for girls in government schools or colleges.

Interesting Points

  • Apartheid: It means separation on the basis of race. For example; South African people were divided into white, black, Indian and coloured races. 
  • Nelson Mandela of the African National Congress led the struggle against apartheid and in 1994; South Africa became a democratic country.

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