Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Election based democracy

We have at present democracy, in that our representative is decided by election of the suitable candidate by voters. These candidates are expected to represent the interests of voters in general. In this post I want to discuss how correct this expectation is that, these elected candidates truly represent the aspirations and needs of their voters. My study of these candidates for so many years has shown that actually, this expectation of our constitution writer is wrongly based unfortunately, and I want to discuss the reasons for that here in this blog. We always know that there is difference in theoretical approach and practical approach. Here also we see sadly though, that difference comes on surface. It is a theoretical expectation that these candidates should represent voter's aspirations truly but what is practical experience? Do they represent voter's aspirations and needs and demands. The reply is NO!

Why they do not always do that and when they do it? I wanted to find out the reasons for this off-the-wall behavior of these otherwise neat people. First, is it really a bizarre behavior or is it by intention and by guided motivation that they behave in this manner. To understand this we should know the details of the procedure of elections we hold in our country. To know number of factors involved in any election process and how they influence the behavior of this candidate is necessary to get to its roots.

Let us take a case of a candidate selected by a political party. How many factors are involved in his/her election? Party's leader's aspirations, the aspirations and expectations of his other party members who are responsible for him to get the ticket, his own ambitions, requirements of his financiers, desires of his family and friends, effects of other pressure groups on him, and lastly aspirations and needs of his voters. That means in all as we find seven factors are involved in the process of his getting elected. We see that even though voters decide his fate they have last priority. This is because voters are not a strong force that can compel hi to do what they want as their representative. Other six elements have a capacity to push him to do whatever they wish him to do. That means, pressure capacity is the most important factor that decided whether this candidate will work or not. I have enlisted these factors in the capacity as pressure groups and therefore, we see that Party's central leadership has maximum power to make him do things and voters have minimal power in that. Supposing voters requirement and Party leader's requirements clash obviously this candidate will do what leaders want him to do and voters will be left high and dry!

I was told by one candidate from Shiva Sena that candidate is required to pass proposals of requirements of voters to their leaders and if leaders also approve of that then only the candidate can take up the issue not otherwise. In other parties also more or less the arrangement is similar. When I asked a candidate why voters are having least position even though his vote makes him what he is. He told me even though this is correct in practice we have to deal with leaders and get favors from them while a voter is gone nowhere after the election is over. We need not really bother for what he wants for at least another five years. Similar condition exists in case of other five factors. A candidate has to face them on regular basis and answer them for all the five years so long as he is elected candidate. Amongst all these factors financiers is sometimes more important than even the party leaders. Money being the most important thing in every place.

I asked him is there any way out to get voter prime position in this ladder of factors? He only suggested that in many cases party workers if truly care for the needs of voters they can create pressure on him and make him do what they want and by that method it is possible to get voters aspirations honored by him not otherwise. Directly a voter can create no pressure of him. Does it mean that unless pressure is created a candidate shall not comply with voter's requirement? The answer was Yes, a candidate cares nothing for a voter once he has elected him.
This is the situation today of our democracy. I want my readers to suggest how this problem can be resolved. It is proved beyond doubt that present election based democracy does not help the voters but it is the system that is intrinsically corruption breeding system. This is because to win an election the candidate has to spend a lot of money as we all know. Ordinarily elections cost the candidate to the tune of at least one million rupees or more. When he spends so much money he has to recover it! How can he do it unless he makes some money by his position as people's representative. His remuneration is not so much that he can pay back to his financiers the cost of his election. He has to get concessions to them and many more things he has to indulge in and that amounts to corruption. Most candidates are dualy sold to business men so that they recover the cost of election and more. If I say our present system of election is by itself intrinsically corruption prone and so long as this continues we cannot get rid of corruption from our society. Can we blame our elected representatives if they encourage corruption to recover the cost of election?
At the end of the day we have to admit that present party politics and election based on it is not going to help voters get their aspirations fulfilled. To get voters' their right for proper representation we have to abolish party politics altogether. Candidates will be independent because when he is an independent candidate he is not to bother for party high command, local leaders, other meddling agencies, however, he may have to consider his financiers and so he can concentrate properly most of the time on the needs of his voters. In our constitution also there is no mention of party politics. That was added afterwards. Parliament made of party politicians will never help in that. So the problem is, who can make these changes in the present arrangement?

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Ashok Kothare, http://ashokkotharesblog.blogspot.com/ for stories
I reckon, http://kotharesviews.blogspot.com/ for philosophy
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Freedom of Expression, http://blogs.siliconindia.com/kothare/ for intelligent discussions.