Electoral Reforms In India

The verdict points to the importance of economic issues


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Mains level: Need of Federalism in India

Why in the news?

The outcome of the Lok Sabha elections surprised those who had relied on the flawed exit polls.

The visible message from the general elections of 2024 emphasized two main points:

  • Revival of Federalism: The elections underscored the importance of revitalizing federalism, moving away from the centralized control that had characterized the previous decade. It highlighted the need for state governments to have more autonomy and the ability to deliver public services without excessive interference from the central government.
  • Constructive and Inclusive Political Approach: The results indicated that political parties need to adopt a more constructive and inclusive approach to nation-building. This includes a stronger focus on social justice, addressing economic issues such as unemployment and low wages, and ensuring that policies cater to the needs and rights of various segments of the population, including youth, women, farmers, and workers. The electorate showed a preference for parties that prioritize livelihood and employment issues along with social justice.

Need to revive the Federalism

  • Decentralization of Power: Federalism ensures a more balanced distribution of power between the central and state governments. This decentralization allows states to manage their affairs more effectively, tailoring policies and programs to their specific needs and circumstances.
  • Enhanced Public Service Delivery: State governments are primarily responsible for delivering essential public services such as health, education, and infrastructure. A revived federalism would enable states to perform these functions without undue interference from the central government, leading to more efficient and responsive governance.
  • Cultural and Regional Autonomy: India is a diverse country with varied cultural, linguistic, and regional identities. Federalism respects and accommodates this diversity by allowing states to preserve and promote their unique identities and traditions within the framework of a united nation.

Political Parties need to be more constructive, and inclusive in their approach to nation-building

  • Addressing Economic Challenges: Parties must focus on pressing economic issues such as unemployment, low wages, and the rising cost of living. Constructive policies that create jobs, support small businesses, and address economic disparities are crucial for national progress.
  • Social Justice and Inclusion: Inclusivity involves addressing the needs and rights of marginalized and disadvantaged groups. This includes ensuring social justice for various castes, genders, and socio-economic backgrounds. Emphasizing social justice can help reduce inequality and promote a more cohesive society.
  • Responsive to Public Needs: Political parties need to listen to and address the genuine needs and concerns of the populace. This involves creating policies that reflect the realities faced by people in different regions and socio-economic conditions.

Conclusion: The 2024 Lok Sabha elections underscored the need for revitalized federalism and a constructive, inclusive political approach focused on economic issues and social justice to address diverse public needs effectively.

Mains PYQ 

Q How far do you think cooperation, competition and confrontation have shaped the nature of federation in India? Cite some recent examples to validate your answer. (UPSC IAS/2020)

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