It is commented that Pressure groups tend to empower the already powerful. Thus, they increase rather than reduce political inequality. Do you agree with this view. Critically discuss? (150W10M)

Mentors Comment:

The language of the question is one sided but you have to critically discuss the issue. Present both sides of the arguments. Start with intro of PGs and their methodology. Give examples of some PGs in India like trade, agriculture, students and education related PGs.

Next in the answer, discuss how PGs strive to bring political equality. Points will revolve around giving voices to unheard and marginalised sections, high level of involvement of members in PGs. Because there is always a counter PG against a dominant one, hence the role of powerful might get diluted.

From here, jump to the next part which will be based on the actual statement of the question: how they empower the already powerful and reduce equality in the process. Points like role of money and political back support, cartelisation of interests by PGs, influencing the decisions of govt by access to better resources and mobilisation etc.

Do you agree with this view? This component of the question will form your conclusion of the answer. Don’t be too critical of the opposing side which you take. Try to balance the perspective. For example we have given balanced viewpoint on the question in the conclusion. That’s a better way to approach the end rather than outrightly taking a stance against any discussion.

Model Answer:


  • Pressure groups (PGs) are voluntary organisations formed to advance or defend a common cause or interest. They do not strive to take office or to govern; they simply seek to express their ideas in an organised manner. Trade associations like FICCI, ASSOCHAM, farmers groups like BKU, different trade unions like AITUC, students organisations like ABVP and NSUI and even RWAs of our colonies are examples of PGs in India.
  • For some, pressure groups are a fundamental part of democracy. To others, pressure groups undermine the whole principle of democracy by increasing political inequality.

How they increase the political equality:

  • The democratic problem of inequality is compensated when there is a high level of membership and involvement in pressure groups.
  • Pressure groups constantly compete against each other which in turn evens out the spread of power and equality.
  • No group can be dominant indefinitely, as there is always another which challenges it.
  • Pressure groups bring forth ideas and changes which is not the norm.
  • Also, pressure groups allow power to be dispersed.
  • They represent the politically unrepresented.
  • They complement and supplement democracy by enabling opinions to be weighed as well as counted equally.

How they reduce political inequality:

  • Pressure groups improve participation, but in an unequal way, benefiting the well organised but disadvantaging the weakly organised.
  • In this sense, they work against and not in favour of the public interest.
  • There is a fine line between pressure groups and lobbyist and its when PGs become lobbyists then problem of inequality starts coming to fore.
  • It seems as if they’re sort of cartels of interest, a bunch of privileged groups that just benefit.
  • PG creates instability and unfairness within the democratic process because it leads to a group being more powerful than the other because of the unequal distribution of money and resources.
  • Powerful insider groups can use their insider status and power to go and pursue their own personal cause.
  • Pressure groups tend to empower the already powerful. They therefore increase rather than reduce, political inequality.
  • This has a negative effect on democracy itself as it contradicts the whole concept of democracy and it allows those who have access to resources to impact decisions.


  • In nut and shell, it’s when PGs start working as lobbyists then problem occurs. Lobbying industry in India is unregulated and informal unlike US, which results into bribery, corruption etc. Thus, passing of Disclosure of Lobbying Activities Bill, 2013 (DLA Bill) holds much significance to organize activities of PG in India.
  • Pressure groups do to an extent promote democracy and political equality in creating another channel in which people can partake in politics. But the ways in which they try to exert an influence can become underhand and undermine parliamentary democracy.
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4 years ago

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Pritam Kumar
4 years ago
Reply to  Alkapoddar

Hello Alka,
-Few quick suggestion…please indicate your starting point of answer…from which page and para you start….
-Check the word limit as the answer demands only 150 words…
-Need to widen your reading base….Reading Newspapers everyday will help…
-Introduction seems to be okay….the 2nd para…I think the word corruption should not come here….because its a punishable criminal offence…
2nd page…tribal organization…Jharkhand Mukti Morcha is a political party (though they are also considered PGs but in different context)…Tribal Groups – NSCN, TNU, United Mizo federal org, Tribal League of Assam etc…etc…
-The activities of the PGs should always be in positive sense and not in negative….if negative they may be termed as rivals…like naxal groups…(3rd page both the para)…

-Overall, your answer is below average…Many points lack relevancy and deficit of examples…

Though nice attempt with good intent….keep practicing…will improve for sure…
Keep writing…
Refer our model answer or other best answers reviewed for better clarity…

4 years ago

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Pritam Kumar
4 years ago
Reply to  Kapiushon

Hello Kapiushon…
-Introduction seems to be okay…okay…though it would have been more better….like they are informal group with some common cause…then bring examples of PG…
-Instead of mentioning the word ‘Pros’ here it would be better if you mention ‘importance’….
-Point no. 3 is not the work of PG…hence irrelevant…
-Point 4 seems incomplete…more clarity needed…
-The question is not asking about Pros and Cons…and hence mentioning them will narrow your ideas mentioned…we need to move with the flow of the question….
-Point 2 under pros…is incomplete…not conveying complete idea…
-The last line of the conclusion is repeated one….the conclusion is incomplete….

Overall this answer is in between average and good….few modifications and completeness of ideas will make it very good…
Though you attempted in good way…keep practicing…further improvement is inevitable…
Keep writing…
Marks awarded: 3.5/10

4 years ago

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Pritam Kumar
4 years ago
Reply to  Invincible

Hello Invincible,
-Introduction is okay….with relevant examples…
-However, the rest of the points mentioned are too general…2nd para…which PG is directed towards the restoration of status quo…and the subsequent para….they seem talking without any base and concrete evidence….

Such answer is like writing without any ideas and conceptual knowledge….
-Need to mention how they increase and in contrary reduce inequality….Further how they empower already powerful….etc..etc..

Overall, this answer seems to be vague…and is not fulfilling the demand of the question…
Refer our model answer or other answer reviewed for better clarity…

prafull sharma
4 years ago


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Pritam Kumar
4 years ago
Reply to  prafull sharma

Hi.. Prafull
-Introduction is okay…though there are many types of pressure groups….like…Trade associations like FICCI, ASSOCHAM, farmers groups like BKU, different trade unions like AITUC, students organisations like ABVP and NSUI and even RWAs of our colonies are examples of PGs in India…etc…etc…etc…

-Further points mentioned are very good and well arranged ideas…Benefits of pressure group…it would be better if you write in paragraphs…though good one…

Nice attempt…well written….keep practicing…
Keep writing….
Marks awarded: 5.5/10