India as a democracy needs democratically functioning political parties to deepen the democratic setup at grassroot level. Comment.

While India has a vibrant democracy at parliamentary level, intra-party democracy is not prevalent in India.

Political parties – integral part:

  • Give voice to all sections of society.
  • Ensure accountability of the government.
  • Enables ideologically inclined individuals to participate in democratic setup.

Intra-party democracy worldwide:

  • Oldest democracy USA – Presidential candidate chosen through primary election by party members.
  • UK – leader of house (PM) chosen by all the members of the political party.
  • Party leadership democratically chosen by members.

Need for strengthening intra-party democracy:

  • Provides opportunities for grassroot leaders to contest for political posts.
  • Youth can aspire for leadership roles.
  • Checks dynastic politics and nepotism.
  • Ensure free flow of ideas within the party.
  • Ensures evolution of ideology with time.

Institutionalization of intra party democracy may be statutorily enforced by amending the Representation of People’s Act (1951). Such a measure will ensure transparency (financial and political), accountability and strengthen grass root level democracy in India.

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