Democracy and Diversity


Diversity in Society: The presence of different socio-economic group, different religious groups, different linguistic groups, different cultural groups and different caste groups can be termed as diversity in society.


India is a perfect example of diverse nation. In India people of almost all major religion of this world can be found. There are thousands of languages, variety of food habits, all hues of costumes and myriad variety of cultures and subcultures in India.


Diversity as perfect stimulus to politics: As per Darwin’s theory of evolution it is the survival of fittest. Human beings in their endeavour to survive need to prosper economically. The economic prosperity  ultimately  leads  to  social  upgradation.  History  is  full  of  example  when  some economically stronger social group tried to dominate the comparatively weaker sections. This was done to ensure uninterrupted control over resources and power.


As per the caste system of ancient Hindu scriptures, society was divided into four class based on area of work. Nobody is sure what was the situation originally but over a period of time this developed into a caste and class system which was strictly based on one’s birth in a particular caste.


The so-called upper caste people controlled every economical resource and lower caste people were opressed to prevent them from developing in the socio-economic order.


Partly because of British influence and partly because of liberal policies followed by successive governments in India more and more people started getting access to modern methods of education. Apart from this the fourth estate, media increased political awareness among vast sections of the society.


These things must have done wonders for political awakening of the downtrodden masses. This awakening is bearing fruit, which is evident from rise of strong regional leaders who don’t belong to the upper caste.


As you know democracy is about giving every stakeholder a say in the governance. So now it can be said that India is finally evolving as a true democracy, because now almost all sections of society is having a representation in the Government.


Government’s Steps to Include Fringe groups into Mainstream:

After independence, the constitution makers made two radical provision, which were to frame

India’s destiny in the right direction.


The first provision was to give the right to vote to every adult citizen of this country. Many experts in those days laughed at the idea giving. The reason given was highly illiterate population was not fit to use the right judiciously.


The second provision was to give reservation to the Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes   to include them in the mainstream of the life of the nation.


These  two  provisions  helped  grow  the  level  of  political  awareness  amongst  the  people  of hinterland. In fact it took hundreds of years for developed countries like US and UK to provide voting rights to women. An the disheartening fact is till none of the women could become the President of USA. Till a few days ago no president of US was black.


Compare this with the better situation in India. Flashback your memory to 2004 elections’ results. To quote a news magazine, “In a Hindu majority nation a Muslim President was administering oath of office to a Sikh Prime Minister who was chosen for the job by a Catholic woman”.


The statement should make every Indian proud of its rich diversity and the respect for diverstiy which majority of its citizens have imbibed over a period of time.