Rethinking Democracy: A Blessing or Curse (Panauti) for the Nation?

Bengal Election Voters

In the midst of the ongoing democratic fervor across five states, the nation finds itself engulfed in the familiar chaos of rallies, meetings, speeches, and political crossfire. Dignity, decency, and morality seem to have taken a back seat, replaced by a rapid influx of curses exchanged between leaders of the Congress and BJP.

The spotlight, however, shifts to a critical question: has democracy itself transformed into a curse for our country? As political parties engage in verbal sparring, the narrative broadens to scrutinize whether the democratic system, responsible for electing these leaders, is, in fact, a curse for the nation.

Comparisons are drawn with our neighboring Pakistan, where the very essence of democracy appears to be a curse, exemplified by Talha Saeed’s candidacy in the upcoming general elections. The son of the notorious terrorist Hafiz Saeed, Talha Saeed’s bid raises ethical dilemmas about whether the offspring of a terrorist should participate in a democratic process.

Returning to our own democratic conundrum, the focus shifts to the alarming presence of leaders facing criminal charges. The narrative questions the integrity of a system that allows individuals accused of murder, rape, and kidnapping to not only contest but also potentially shape the nation’s laws. The staggering statistics reveal a disconcerting reality – 44 percent of MLAs in India, totaling 1,777 individuals, have criminal cases pending against them.

The critique extends beyond mere accusations; it delves into the delays in legal proceedings, highlighting a failure in the functioning of the judiciary. The erosion of the four fundamental pillars of democracy—legislature, executive, judiciary, and media—raises concerns about the system’s resilience.

Party-wise and state-wise breakdowns further underscore the pervasive issue of criminalization in politics, with both major parties, BJP and Congress, having their share of leaders entangled in legal troubles. The statistics paint a grim picture, revealing a significant percentage of legislators facing serious criminal charges.

The escalating number of pending cases against MPs and MLAs adds to the growing skepticism about the efficacy of the democratic process. A BBC report emphasizes the disconcerting trend of candidates with criminal records having higher chances of winning elections, prompting reflection on the electorate’s role in perpetuating this cycle.

The article concludes by challenging the prevailing narrative of democracy as a panacea, urging a critical examination of whether the current democratic principles align with the original values and traditions. It questions the wisdom of choosing between alleged criminals and the erosion of democracy’s moral fabric.

In this introspective journey, the article contends that if democracy is to be considered a curse, the real challenge lies not in denouncing leaders but in safeguarding the essence of democracy itself.


About The Author:
Aman Namra, a seasoned Development Journalist with a remarkable three-decade career, has made significant contributions in the field. As the Incharge and Resident Editor of the prominent National Development Communication Network “Charkha,” headquartered in Delhi, Aman has played a pivotal role in advancing the organization’s mission. Notably, “Charkha” was established by the renowned social worker Sanjoy Ghose, whose life was tragically cut short by Ulfa Extremists.

Aman’s commitment to fostering knowledge and awareness extends beyond the editorial desk. He has conducted approximately 50 media workshops across multiple states, including Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Mizoram, and Uttar Pradesh. These workshops have engaged journalists, social activists, and thought leaders, reinforcing the importance of Development Journalism.

Recognized as an authority in the field, Aman has been invited to share his insights on Development Journalism at prestigious institutions such as the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, Lady Irwin College in Delhi, and Makhan Lal National University in Bhopal. His expertise and experiences are highly regarded in academic circles.

Aman’s influence extends to the realm of the written word. He has penned over 100 articles covering a diverse range of topics, which have been published in various newspapers and magazines. His literary accomplishments include the authorship of two books on traditional water harvesting, both published by esteemed institutions, the National Book Trust and the National Foundation of India in Delhi.

Aman’s commitment to knowledge exchange and cross-border understanding is exemplified by his selection as a South Asia Media Exchange Fellow. During his fellowship, he conducted research in Nepal, focusing on traditional water harvesting and natural foresting systems, thereby contributing to regional knowledge and sustainable practices.

Today, Aman continues to shape the media landscape as the Executive Editor of Digital Media at Dainik Bhaskar, headquartered in Bhopal. His extensive experience and unwavering dedication to Development Journalism continue to leave a lasting impact on the industry.

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