Has Politics in India
Lost its Way?
There was a time in India when the place to be for anyone interested in shaping, or at least in influencing, public policy was on the floor or a political party convention. This is not a recognisable model today.
Political parties neither offer voters a meaningful opportunity for involvement in the policy making process, nor do they generate policy alternatives for those elected to office it is no exaggeration that political parties have lost their soul to image-driven politics and have, in the process, lost their ability to attract members.
India is the largest democracy in the world. India has the biggest number of people with franchise rights and the largest number of political parties, which take part in election campaign. The parties no longer see these people as those who share their ideology. Rather they are treated as ‘vote banks’ to win the elections. Politics in India has become a game. The theory of ‘Ram Rajya’ of the ancient times can be felt nowhere.
Party leaders are concerned with winning political power and have little interest in analysing political or policy issues that are not connected to that. Political parties are increasingly dominated by party leaders and their carefully selected courtiers. They play the politics of image and policy vagueness in the pursuit of political power. Party leaders take office with little sense of direction and end up as brokers among competing interest groups.
Citizens, meanwhile, have come to understand that it is better for them to associate with an interest group rather than a political party to promote their policy preferences. Moreover, political parties have lost their place to the ‘hero-worship’ of party leaders.
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