ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

DemocracySubscribe to Democracy

WikiLeaks, the New Information Cultures and Digital Parrhesia

How does one understand WikiLeaks, which has not only redefined media ethics but has also redefined what we understand as media cultures?

State Secrets, Profits and SARS

If SARS showed the weakness of the centralised and authoritarian Chinese political system, it also exposed the fact that in giving primacy to business profits, Toronto could let down its guard too soon. It is not only the lack of democracy, but also the enshrining of profits that is a culprit.

Calcutta Diary

The eerie early hours of May 19, 1993. Five intruders, Kalashnikovs already blazing, barge into a two-room bit in a house on the eastern fringes of Calcutta and, no questions asked, summarily shoot, several times over, a young Punjabi couple. The sequel of developments to this episode, 10 years ago, epitomises the current state of the democratic republic of India.

Migration to Democratic South Africa

Since the 19th century, South Africa's economy has been sustained by the migration of cheap labour from neighbouring countries. But the end of apartheid, the consequent search for a new national identity and the accompanying tensions of a nation in transition have also fuelled deep suspicion and hostility against such migrants, who are now viewed increasingly as 'aliens'.

Shalishi in West Bengal

Traditional community/village level dispute resolution systems still coexist with formal processes of justice and administration. The `shalishi' is one such method of arbitration in West Bengal that has been used by NGOs to intervene effectively in settling domestic violence cases. Shalishi scores over the more formal legal avenues of dispute resolution because of its informal set up. But deriving its legitimacy as it does from the conventional norms and values of the community it works in favour of keeping the family intact, often compromising feminist notions of empowerment.

In Defence of Pluralism

Pluralism, Equality and Identity: Comparative Studies by T K Oommen; Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2002; pp 189, Rs 475.

Mutilated Liberty and the Constitution

Without liberty there cannot be democracy and Article 19 of the Indian Constitution guarantees that right to all citizens. In order that the state can regulate the individual's freedom in the greater interest of society a number of restrictions have been placed on these rights. However the restrictions have become so numerous today that the balance has tilted towards social control rather than liberty.

Rights versus Representation

In the name of democracy, the constituent assembly of India adopted certain specific individual and collective rights to religion. Democracy, however, is not just about rights; another integral component of democracy is representation. This essay argues that the granting of a range of individual and collective religious rights to the minorities was used, in the constituent assembly, to justify the refusal of their demand for more adequate mechanisms of representation, for instance, for proportional representation or for reserved seats in the legislatures.

CPC's Fourth Generation Ideology

Hu Jintao, the new general secretary of the Communist Party of China, and his colleagues, who constitute the party's fourth generation leadership, have been armed by Jiang Zemin with a new ideological tool called Sange Daibiao (the Three Represents) which, like Deng Xiaoping�s Gaige Kaifang (Reform and Open Door), seems to be slowly capturing the imagination of the Chinese people. This formulation is seen by the left as an outrageous departure from Marxism. The right is equally disappointed by the refusal to grant full freedom to the propertied classes. Yet the Three Represents are carefully crafted guidelines for the party to face the challenges of the emerging world and to take the country forward in the new century.

Fifty Five Years of a Feudal Democracy

The 55th anniversary of independence day should be an occasion to rejoice and celebrate. But is it? A brief perspective on where we stand in the comity of nations; what is happening in the country in terms of our governance, our mental attitude and stances.

National Security and the People

National security is generally regarded as being in the domain of the national government and armed forces. It is often not realised that the people of the nation constitute the foundation of national security. If the people are empowered to take care of their basic needs and are not exploited by...

Pages

Back to Top