Concept Of Representative Democracy

Nature has entrusted human beings with limitless and never ending desires which led to the quagmire of conflicts. They need the authority with enough power to regulate the limitless needs and desire of human beings and at the same time to resolve the conflicts between human beings. Human beings have always been squarely confronting with the question as to how to harmonise satisfactorily the conflicting interests. Moreover at no stage human beings have ever existed without some form of power or authority.

Human beings are always in the constant search for the means for improving and developing themselves to the fullest extent. Modern society usually depends upon the government. Government may be appointed constituted or elected for the purpose to provide essential service to the society. The electoral system is a political device through which the modern states creates amongst themselves a sense of involvement and participation of the citizens in public affairs of the country. In a representative democracy the nation youth and its citizen’s share power by choosing their representative through periodic elections and by electing representative to the legislative bodies of the state.

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India is sovereign, secular, democratic, socialistic and republic state. The success of a democracy depends upon free and fair elections. It is cliché but still it is of paramount significance. It is a fact that the administrative arrangements are vital for ensuring free and fair elections and the constituent assembly had recommended that the independence of the election should be declared as a fundamental right of every citizen. Even the constituent assembly agreed that the question of free and fair election was a matter of great importance and thereby the Constitution establishes the centralised agency in the shape of the election commission to put in charge of all election matters. Democracy in literal sense means power to the people.

A.V Dicey defined democracy as a form of government in which the governing body is comparatively large fraction of the entire nation. The most prominent and accepted definition of democracy was given by Abraham Lincoln. “Democracy is the government of the people, for the people and by the people.” Whereas election means an opportunity for voters to hold elected officials accountable for their action or to chose between the competing candidates. Election has been defined as the process for identifying the public opinion which is considered to be one of the prominent factors for choosing the most deserved candidate.

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I mean to diminish no individual, no society, no association in the Indian history, when I say that India is valued all around the world for many great things, but for three over all others: The Taj Mahal, Mahatma Gandhi and India’s democracy”.- Gopalkrishna Gandhi [1]

This quote speaks about the importance of democracy and purity in the election process. It is trite to say that fair, unbiased electoral process and citizen participation is fundamental in safeguarding the real value of democracy in India. Thus, the most essential feature of a democratic polity is to have elections at regular interval. Elections in it constitute the signpost and willingness of the citizen. Democracy is like a prism which reflects the values, beliefs of the citizens towards the political environment. Elections are the symbol of sovereignty of the people which provide authority and legitimacy to the government.[2] India has been distinguished for being the largest democracy in the world. Elections have been considered as the most important and integral part of the politics in a democratic system of governance. Politics has been considered as an art of dealing and practicing political power. Democracy, the word engraved in the Preamble can only be realized if the elections are fair and not rigged and manipulated by illegal means and instruments. Over the years Election Commission of India has conducted number of electoral reforms to strengthen the democracy and in order to enhance the fairness in elections.

Free and fair election connotes that no one under the electoral process is in the bondage to another, having his personal rights social and political liberty, free thinking and legal discipline. While exercising right to vote one shall not be under the influence of any party discipline, religion, caste, creed and sex and so on. Thus free and fair elections are the building and foundation blocks of the free and democratic society


The Preamble of the Indian Constitution in its opening line has incorporated the democratic principles by which Indian Democracy is guided. The Constitution maker gave the preamble the place of pride as it is embodied in a solemn form of all the ideals and aspirations for which people of India struggled so hard. The Preamble truly represents the colour of democracy which can be find in the two most important words used in the preamble i.e. Democratic and Republic which clearly shows that the Constitution has been enacted in accordance with the democratic norms which would have full share in the governance of the country.


[2] Apurva Prabhakar, “NOTA in INDIA” Published in the International Journal of Humanities and Social Science Invention, ISSN (Online): 2319 – 7722, ISSN (Print): 2319 – 7714  accessed on January 29th 2019 at 8:00 AM.

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Pranav Kaushal

Pranav Kumar Kaushal, Content Writter, Law Corner, Student B.A., LLB 7th Semester, School of Law, Bahra University, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh.

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