Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Challenges with constitutional democracy in South Asia

In A constitutional state, Rasul Bakhsh Rais points out the reasons for weak democracy in Pakistan.
While the generally pointed problem is the over indulgence of military into civil government, Rasul points out other aspects that have made civilian governments weak. He points "The answer lies in the undemocratic mindset of traditional leaders who control the political parties and, through them, the electoral process.". He continues - "One point that is debated often but never understood is why there is no democracy within political parties; and why and how families and oligarchs dominate them. In essence, these elements use political parties to maintain their dominance, using the party’s name, social support base and elite network to control access to electoral politics and power."

This problem is not only confined to Pakistan and also resonates very well with India.


Anonymous said...

It's true for many democracies most notably even in US with Bush, Clinton, Kennedy and a whole host of small time leaders. IN US there is a fair amount of democracy withing party, so may be we need to take one more step back, Isnt't the democratic systems also biased towards the wealthy and well connected ? How about taking a step back and thinking about ways to take the people out of the so called slave mentality ?

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