Issues in Democracy

Issues of equality in other democracies

India is the only democratic country in which there is inequality and where the struggle for equality continues to exist. In many democratic countries around the world, the issue of equality continues to be the key issue around which communities struggle.

Civil Rights Movement

 Rosa Parks

For example in United States of America, the African-American whose ancestors were the slaves who were brought over from Africa, continue to describe their lives today as largely unequal. This, despite the fact that there was a movement in the late 1950s to push up for equal rights for African-Americans.

Rosa Parks(1913-2005) was an African American women. Tired from a long day at work, she refused to give up her seat on the bus to a white man on 1st December 1955. Her refusal that day started a huge agitation against unequal ways in which African-Americans were treated and which came to be known as the civil rights movement. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibited discrimination on the basis of race, religion or national origin. It also stated that all schools would be opened to African American children that they would no longer have to attend separate schools specially setup for them. Despite this, a majority of African-American continues to be among the poorest in the country. Most African-American children can only afford to attend government schools that have fewer facilities and poorly qualified teacher as compared to white students who either go to private schools or live in areas where the government schools are highly rated up as private schools.

Civil Rights movement

Challenges of democracy

No country can be described as being completely democratic. There are always communities and individuals trying to expand the idea of democracy and push for a greater recognition of equality on existing as well as new issues. Central to this is the struggle for the recognition of all person as equal and for their dignity to be maintained.

According to Article 15 of Indian Constitution:

Prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, cast, sex or place of birth was made-

  • The state shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth, or any of them.
  • No citizen shell, on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them, be subject to any disability liability restrictions or condition with regards to-

 a)  Access to shops, public restaurants, hotels in places of public entertainments.


b)  The use ofwells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resorts maintained wholly or partly out of state funds are dedicated to the use of general public.

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