Highlight the importance of pressure groups in making the democracy participatory and responsive.

Pressure groups are a group of people who ventilate their opinions and try to influence public policy in their favour without directly taking part in politics.

Roles:

  • Voice of minorities.
  • Accountability of government.
  • Public spirited policy changes.
  • Educates citizens on their rights.
  • Gives voice to issues not raised in mainstream political discourse.

Examples by Pressure groups to ensure strong and vibrant democracy:

  • Peoples union of civil liberties – Lobbied judicially and ensured formulation of doctrine of “negative vote” and introduction of NOTA.
  • India Against Corruption – Lobbied for introduction and setting up of Lokpal, ensuring transparency in public life.
  • NALSA – Recognition of third gender – giving them rights including voting rights.

Healthy participation by pressure groups is essential in a democratic setup and their activities should be encouraged subject to greater national interest.

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