How could a country with such poverty as India be a democracy?
Under normal circumstances, democracy and poverty do not equate for a nation. Usually, in a democratic nation, capitalism is prevalent, which causes companies to prosper and people to profit financially. There is normally poverty in a democratic nation, but very rarely the amount of poverty found in India, with over one third of the people living in severe destitution.
People of India have extreme faith in their government. The poor people of India are increasingly dedicated to their voting process. About 63% of Indians believe that their vote counts, which is significantly more than that of the United States. Also, the poverty stricken people of India have a three percent higher voting percentile than those of upper classes.
It was with India\'s first democratic leader, Nehru, that the Indian people were initially introduced to democracy. This is because Nehru chose to develop a democratic government, rather than to develop industries and the economy. Nehru was a very positive impact on the Indian people, by not becoming authoritarian when he so easily could have.
The lack of education and the abject poverty among the Indian people caused ideal conditions for an authoritarian regime. Nehru did not agree with an authoritarian form of government. Nehru's strong belief in democracy allowed the people to continue working on their farms and keeping them satisfied with their current conditions.
The Indian people live in a very different type of society when compared to the other democratic nations of the world. The Indians are a very agricultural people and not very industrialized. By Nehru choosing democracy over industrialization, it has taken a lot of time for the idea of industry to catch on. It has only been recently that the Indians have become a part of the computer software industry. The main source of income in India is still crops.
The poor Indian people never actually saw much change in their life, because they did not have the knowledge and technology to become aware of what is actually going on. On a local level, there was very little change. The infamous caste system, although outlawed, is still being practiced.
The caste system of India holds the Indian people back from making a revolt against the government, because there are over 4,000 castes in India, and none of the people talk to others outside of their castes.
This is surprisingly an asset for the Indian government. It is unlikely for poor to rise up in revolt simply because it is not likely that the barrier between castes will ever be broken. This means that democracy will still have a good chance for survival even with the widening rich-poor gap.
The government has security in the knowledge that they will not be overthrown because the people lack the understanding and unity necessary to overtake a nation. Despite this security, the Indian government still has a challenge ahead of itself. This challenge exists because they have been unsuccessful as of yet to rid the country of the ethnic, religious, and caste divisions. This will be essential to making India a true nation state with harmony among its people.
With this in mind, if technology and industry were to thrive in India as they do in other democratic nations, there would surely be disruption to the Indian political process. As it is now, the vast numbers of poor people remaining uneducated and deprived are unable to advance in their socioeconomic status. Consequently, this allows the rich-poor gap continue to grow.
Under India\'s current conditions, it is virtually unthinkable that a democracy would ever prosper. It seems to have progressed to date amazingly enough due to the caste system and due the fact that the people have faith in their government and voting systems. If these conditions were not present, it would be quite impossible for India to have achieved what success it has attained thus far.