In simple words, democracy means rule of the people. US President Abraham Lincoln defined democracy as government of the people, by the people, and for the people.
People are involved in decision-making at various levels of the government. At the ward/Gram Sabha level, people directly give their opinions to frame the policies at the local scale. However, at the state level and the national level, people participate in decision-making through elected representatives.
Democracy puts power in the hands of the citizens. In a democracy, people are supposed to be their own masters. Democracy, to put it simply, is a more civilised manner of fighting. It places more focus on discussion and persuasion rather than the use of armed forces. In a democracy, the ballot is more powerful than the bullet.
Gandhiji opined that India will achieve true independence, that is Swaraj, only when the concept of Gram Swaraj is engrained. Therefore, local government bodies like the Gram Sabhas should be empowered to take decisions and implement them.
Keywords: Democracy, ‘Time Travel’ note on Indian Democracy.
As part of this month’s activity, students are expected to learn about-
- Democracy at work.
- Important phases of Indian democracy.
The activity is divided into the following 2 parts –
|Activity Heads||Mode||Steps to be Followed||Time Required||Role|
|Section 1 - Explanation Session||Online class||
|Section 2 – Note Writing||Offline (Home assignment)||
Teachers will introduce the theme ‘Democracy’ to the class. Teachers can refer to the Introduction as well as the Information Handouts.
Step 2: Teachers should then ask the students the following set of questions to engage them in a discussion.
- Have you ever attended a society meeting? Do you think there are elements of democracy in those meetings?
- How are civic decisions made in your neighbourhood?
- Have you ever attended any political rally? Is there anything specific you remember from the speeches of the politicians?
Teachers are expected to explain a few terms like universal adult franchise, election institute for conducting elections, voters, electoral roll, etc.
Classroom video: How India Became a Democratic Nation [10 minutes]
The video can be watched at a lower speed, if teachers think that is required.
Teachers can ask students if they have any doubts regarding the topic of ‘Democracy’ that was explained in the video.
Teachers should explain the following steps to the students-
‘Time Travel’ Note on ‘Democracy’-
Students are supposed to write a ‘Time Travel’ note on ‘Democracy’ in 150 to 180 words. They are free to add multiple dimensions to the essays. It is expected that they cover major events and phases in Indian Democracy like Independence, the Emergency, constitutional status to Panchayati Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies during 1991-92, etc.
For Example- Democracy at the time of Independence: During 1947, India was facing two problems – partition and integration. Democracy was going to be the greatest experiment with universal adult franchise...
Students can be as creative as possible while authoring this research-based note writing.