May 12, 2009

Great Indian Democracy

Welcome to India. The world's largest democracy. India is just finishing to vote for it's new elected government. I as an Indian take pride in our democratic system. I know what you will say. It has so many faults. Look at the way coalition politics work in India. The horse-trading, mud-slinging, no permanent friends and foes and no so legal ways to influence voter decision. I agree the system has faults but still our democracy works.
I don’t think monarchy, anarchy, dictatorship or military rule will ever give that power to its people. These systems are all about power lying in the choicest few who would not care about the voice of the common person on the street. You will say, c’on democracy in today’s times in no different. The government normally does things to its benefits. I would say it would be true to some extend. I am not denying it. But the government is elected by the people. Not today, but in five years (in India) or four years (USA) the government does have to go back to people. It is then that they are really answerable to us. It is then we have the right to give our verdict to the policies of the government. We can tell them by our power of vote, if we approve with them or they need to rethink their policies suited to our voice.
I am sure most of you must be thinking that I am living in a dream world. This idea of democracy is not always what we see in real life. Call me an eternal optimistic but I do believe that through our vote we can give directions to the people in power in which way we want to take our country. By voting for the right candidate, we can get those people in power who do have the drive to do something for the common man. I am an advocate of exercising the power of my vote. My vote gives me the freedom to choose the person I want to see as my elected representative. I still remember how excited I was when I voted for the first time. This time also I am looking to make my voice heard. I have no right to complain about the government, if I don’t vote. It is right as if I know this is not the right government for me, then I went out to vote and made sure that my vote is heard. Whichever party we identify with, whose ideologies inspire us, and if we think they would do good for our country then we should always go out and vote.
I believe in Indian Democracy because when I look at India's neighboring countries I realize how lucky we are. In India, a common man still has the freedom of movement, speech and expression. Look at the state of people in Pakistan or Sri-Lanka. These countries are also so called "democracy" and the citizens of these countries are not sure if their government can really protect them from others. I know India has its threats. There is no denying that fact. I live in Mumbai and I know what threat to life is here. But then it does not really hamper our normal everyday life. I don't have to flee my home, leaving everything I own behind and live in make shift camps. In India, the media has enormous freedom. Through our present 24X7 live news channels we can get instant news. I still remember the amount of live television I saw during the 26/11 Mumbai attacks. How many countries in the world would allow this amount of freedom to its media? These are just few of the reasons why I would like to have democracy in India.
I hear arguments from people saying China has progressed so much because they don't have a democratic rule. The government has thousand restrictions on its people. But then I will just say that look at USA and then lets compare.
I am writing this blog just to tell people around that take pride in our democratic system. It is a gift our freedom fighters have given us. Let us all work to make it truly successful. Be part of this system if you want to change it. Use it to make "India Shining".

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