INDIAN DEMOCRACY HOW ITS FUNCTIONS CLASS 10
UNIVERSAL ADULT FRANCHISE
* Every citizen of India who is 18 years of age and above and who is not otherwise disqualified, is entitled to vote in the elections.
* The Constitution affirms that all the people of India are free and equal and have
the right to vote without any distinction of caste, creed, colour or sex place of birth.
* The system of universal adult franchise is based on the principle 'one person one vote¢.
This ensures political equality in the country. The disqualifications are also given in the Constitution.
Those who are declared bankrupt or mentally unsound are debarred from voting.
* Effective functioning of a democratic government depends on the quality of its citizens.
The citizens, who elect the government, should be alert, aware of their rights and duties,
keep themselves update with what is happening in the country and the world as a whole.
They need to increase their knowledge through newspapers, radio, television, public meetings and other media.
* Democracy seek's people's opinion on various issues. This is so because democracy derives its authority from the people
It depends, to a great extent on public opinion. In a representative democracy, every government has to think about people's reaction to its policies.
* No government would like to in power only for one time. It would like to come back to power again after the next election.
It would, in fact, like to retain power. Coming back to power depends on the next election which in turn, depends on people's opinion of its work when it was in power.
* Strong public opinion plays a very significant role in the capturing of power,
forming government and also retaining the government in the consecutive elections.
* Public opinion helps in creating such a condition where the government cannot afford to misrule or neglect the country.
Alert and intelligent public which keeps itself informed, cannot be taken for a ride by the government.
* The government also knows that disregarding the aspirations of such a public will make it unpopular instantly and
the chance of its coming back to power in the next election becomes remote.
(A) Agencies of Public Opinion :
(i) Print Media :
* In today's world people come to know of the events and happenings across
the globe through two sources-the Print Media and the Electronic Media.
The press through the newspapers, magazines, journals, carry the news of the world.
Public opinion depends to a large extent, on the press.
* In a country like India, where regional languages are equally important, magazines in regional languages
play a significant role in informing the people about the events and happenings in India and in the world.
(ii) Electronic Media :
Importance of radio, television, or cinema in the
formulation of public opinion can never be overlooked specially in a country like india, where rate of illiteracy is quite high.
* Radio reaches more people than the newspapers or magazines.
* Television is another media which not only gives the news of the country and the world it also entertains