Wednesday 8 July 2015

CBSE Class 9 Political Science - CH2 - What is Democracy? Why Democracy? - NCERT Solutions

What is Democracy? Why Democracy?

NCERT Book Solutions for Class 9
CBSE Class 9 Political Science - CH2 - What is Democracy? Why Democracy? - NCERT Solutions

Q1: Here is some information about four countries. Based on this information, how would you Classify each of these countries. Write ‘democratic’, ‘undemocratic’ or ‘not sure’ against each of these.
  1. Country A: People who do not accept the country’s official religion do not have a right to vote
  2. Country B: The same party has been winning elections for the last twenty years.
  3. Country C: Ruling party has lost in the last three elections
  4. Country D: There is no independent election commission
(a) undemocratic
(b) not sure
(c) democratic
(d) undemocratic

Q2: Here is some information about four countries. Based on this information, how would you Classify each of these countries. Write ‘democratic’, ‘undemocratic’ or ‘not sure’ against each of these.
  1. Country P: The parliament cannot pass a law about the army without the consent of the Chief of Army
  2. (b) Country Q: The parliament cannot pass a law reducing the powers of the judiciary
  3. (c) Country R: The country’s leaders cannot sign any treaty with another country without taking permission from its neighbouring country.
  4. (d) Country S: All the major economic decisions about the country are taken by officials of the central bank which the ministers cannot change.
(a) undemocratic
(b) democratic
(c) undemocratic
(d) undemocratic

Q3: Which of these is not a good argument in favour of democracy? Why?
  1. People feel free and equal in a democracy
  2. Democracies resolve conflict in a better way than others
  3. Democratic government is more accountable to the people
  4. Democracies are more prosperous than others

Answer: The argument ‘d’, which states that “Democracies are more prosperous than others”does not fit in favour of democracy. It is because democratic countries like India are still developing economically while there are monarchies like UAE, Kuwait that are economically rich.

Q4: Each of these statements contains a democratic and an undemocratic element. Write out the two separately for each statement:
  1. A minister said that some laws have to be passed by the parliament in order to conform to the regulations decided by the World Trade Organisation.
  2. The Election Commission ordered re-polling in a constituency where large scale rigging was reported.
  3. Women’s representation in the parliament has never reached 10 per cent. This led women’s organisations to demand one-third seats for women.

  1. Democratic element: some laws have to be passed by the parliament
    Undemocratic element: conform to the regulations decided by the World Trade Organisation
  2. Democratic element: the Election Commission ordered re-polling
    Undemocratic element:  large scale rigging was reported
  3. Democratic element:  this led to women’s organisations to demand one third seats for women
    Undemocratic element: women’s representation in the parliament has never reached 10 per cent
Q5: Which of these is not a valid reason for arguing that there is a lesser possibility of famine in a democratic country?
   a. Opposition parties can draw attention to hunger and starvation.
   b. Free press can report suffering from famine in different parts of the country.
   c. Government fears its defeat in the next elections.
   d. People are free to believe in and practise any religion.

Answer:Option ‘d’ is not a valid reason for arguing that there is a lesser possibility of famine in a democratic country. Since practising a religion has nothing to do with preventing famine.

Q6: There are 40 villages in a district where the government has made no provision for drinking water. These villagers met and considered many methods of forcing the government to respond to their need. Which of these is not a democratic method?

    a. Filing a case in the courts claiming that water is part of right to life.
   b.  Boycotting the next elections to give a message to all parties.
   c.  Organising public meetings against government’s policies.
   d.  Paying money to government officials to get water.

Answer: Option ‘d’, is not a democratic method.

Q7: Write a response to the following arguments against democracy.

a. Army is the most disciplined and corruption-free organisation in the country. Therefore army should rule the country.

b. Rule of the majority means the rule of ignorant people. What we need is the rule of the wise, even if they are in small numbers.

c. If we want religious leaders to guide us in spiritual matters, why not invite them to guide us in politics as well. The country should be ruled by religious leaders.

Answer: A democracy is the government elected by the people, from among the people themselves.
(a) An Army is a military force whose sole purpose is to protect the country. It is not elected by the people, hence, it cannot form a democratic government. Rather history has shown army has played an important role in enforcing dictatorship.

(b) Democracy gives equal chance to all the citizens whether poor or rich. It is based on the idea of Universal adult franchise. The second statement can't be true as it contradicts the basic philosophy of Democratic principles.

(c) The third statement is also against democracy because religion interference into politics would cause serious conflict. Religion is a private matter of a citizen with no public implications.

Q 8: Are the following statements in keeping with democracy as a value? Why?

(a) Father to daughter: I don’t want to hear your opinion about your marriage. In our family children marry where the parents tell them to.

(b) Teacher to student: Don’t disturb my concentration by asking me questions in the classroom.

(c) Employee to the officer: Our working hours must be reduced according to the law.

(a) Undemocratic: The girl being denied opportunity to raise her voice about her own marriage clearly seizes her legal rights.

(b) Undemocratic: The student is denied his/her rights to ask doubts in a classroom.

(c) Democratic:  Employee raises his concerns democratically about working hours as per the laws constituted.

Q 9: Consider the following facts about a country and decide if you would call it a democracy. Give reasons to support your decision.

a.  All the citizens of the country have right to vote Elections are held regularly.

b. The country took loan from international agencies. One of the conditions for given loan was that the government would reduce its expenses on education and health.

c. People speak more than seven languages but education is available only in one language, the language spoken by 52 percent people of the country.

d. Several organisations have given a call for peaceful demonstrations and nation wide strikes in the country to oppose these policies. Government has arrested these leaders.

e. The government owns the radio and television in the country. All the newspapers have to get permission from the government to publish any news about government’s policies and protests.

Statement a: Universal adult franchise and regular elections are the salient features of a democracy.

Statement b: The statement is undemocratic. An international agency should not interfere in the internal matters of a state.

Statement c: It is undemocratic. Here people in majority are beneficiaries. A democratic nation gives equal opportunities to her citizens whether they belong to majority or minority groups.

Statement d:  Undemocratic. Citizens must have right to express their views  peacefully.

Statement e: Undemocratic. Government should not control media. All means of communications must have freedom to express their views.

In a nutshell, the country is not democratic. Government controls and censors media, imposes economic sanctions and is partial towards minorities.

Q10: In 2004 a report published in USA pointed to the increasing inequalities in that country. Inequalities in income reflected in the participation of people in democracy. It also shaped their abilities to influence the decisions taken by the government. The report highlighted that:

If an average Black family earns $100 then the income of average White family is $162. A White family has twelve times more wealth than the average Black family.

In a President’s election ‘nearly 9 out of 10 individuals in families with income over $75,000 have voted. These people are the top 20% of the population in terms of their income. On the other hand only 5 people out of 10 from families with income less than $ 15,000 have voted. They are the bottom 20% of the population in terms of their income.

About 95% contribution to the political parties comes from the rich. This gives them opportunity to express their opinions and concerns, which is not available to most citizens.

As poor sections participate less in politics, the government does not listen to their concerns − coming out of poverty, getting job, education, health, car and housing for them. Politicians hear most regularly about the concerns of business persons and the rich. 

Write an essay on ‘Democracy and Poverty’ using the information given in this report but using examples from India.
Democracy and Poverty

Poverty and Democracy highlights an important and complicated relationship between the two. It points out how fundamental rights of democracy are given to the elite section but the poor are still being deprived of.

The pitfalls like chronic capitalism, unequal opportunities have widened the gap between the poor and the rich. Rich are getting richer while the poor are getting poorer. The rich are influencing the government policies. The social power among the citizens is unbalanced which violates the fundamental principles of democracy.

Poverty has become a powerful threat. Political parties are run by the money of the riches. That's why these parties show apathy towards the needs of the poor. Artificial glitters of the modern industry, skyscrapers cannot hide the prevailing unhygienic dwellings of the poor.

Democracy is based on the principle of political equality on recognizing that the poorest and the least educated has the same status as the rich and the educated.Under such biased and pro-rich conditions, a nation can't be democratic for a long time. Sooner or later it will lead to conflicts for the betterment of democracy.


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