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Solved Exercise for Precis writing “Preservation of Democracy” for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

It is not that India did not know Democracy in the past. There was a time when she was studded with republics and even where there were monarchies, they were either elected or limited. They were never absolute. But in the course of time India lost that democratic system. Will she lose it a second time? I do not know. But it is quite possible that in a country like India-where democracy from its long disuse must be regarded as something quite new-there is danger of democracy giving place to dictatorship. It is quite possible for this newborn democracy to retain its form but to give place to dictatorship in fact. If there is landslide, the danger of the second possibility becoming actuality is much greater.

If we wish to maintain democracy, not merely in form but also in fact what must we do. The first thing in my judgment we must do to hold fast to constitutional methods of achieving our social and political objectives. It means we must abandon the bloody methods of revolution. It means we must abandon the method of civil disobedience non-cooperation. When there was no way left for constitutional methods for achieving economic and social objectives there was a deal of justification for unconstitutional methods. These methods are nothing but the Grammar of Anarchy, and the sooner they are abandoned the better for us.

The second thing we must do is to observe the caution which John Stuart Mill has given to all who are interested in the maintenance of democracy, namely not to lay their liberties at the feet of even a great man, or to trust him with powers which enable him to subvert their institutions. There is nothing wrong in being grateful to great men who have rendered lifelong services to the country. But there are limits to gratefulness. As has been well said by the Irish patriot Daniel O’ Connell no man can be grateful at the cost of his honour, no woman can be grateful at the cost of her chastity, and no nation can be grateful at the cost of her liberty. This caution is far more necessary in the case of India than in the case of any other country. For in India hero-worship plays a part in our politics unequalled in magnitude by the part it plays in the politics of any other country of the world. In politics this hero-worship is a sure road to degradation and to eventual dictator ship.

The third thing we must do is not to be content with mere political democracy. We must make our political democracy a social democracy as well. Political democracy cannot live unless there lies at the base of it social democracy. What does social democracy mean? It means a way of life which recognizes liberty, equality and fraternity as the Principles of life. These principles of liberty, equality and fraternity not to be treated as separate items in a trinity. They form a union of trinity in the sense that to divorce one from the other is to defeat the y purpose of democracy. Liberty cannot be divorced from equality; equality cannot be divorced from liberty. Nor can liberty and equality divorced from fraternity. With equality, liberty would produce supremacy of the few over the many. Equality, without liberty, would individual initiative. Without fraternity, liberty and equality would not become a natural course of things. It would require a constable to enforce them.

We must begin by acknowledging the fact that there is complete absence of two things in Indian society. One of these is equality. On the social plane, we have in India a society based on the principle of graded inequality which means elevation for some and degradation for others. On the economic plane we have a society in which there are some who have immense wealth as against many who live in abject poverty. In politics we have equality and in social and economic life we have inequality. How long shall we continue to deny equality in our social and economic life? If we continue to deny it for long we will do so only by putting our political democracy in peril. We must remove this contradiction at the earliest possible moment or else those who suffer from inequality will blow up the structure of our political democracy.

(748 words)

Precis

Title:- Preservation of Democracy

India has seen democratic rule in the past; but the present democracy has come after a long lapse of slavery, so we must try our best to preserve it. To ensure that our democracy is not threatened or degenerated into autocracy while retaining its facade we should adhere to a strictly constitutional process; and desist from the path of anarchy and violence, which shall certainly lead to the destruction of democracy. Secondly, hero-worship should not be our cult. J.S. Mill has said that the citizens should not surrender their rights and powers in the case of anyone due to affection and gratitude, howsoever great he may be. Daniel O. Connell has remarked that our feeling of gratitude should not make us so humble as to lose our sense of honour. Thirdly, democracy should be made strong by transforming its complexion from political to social; and basing it on the three cardinal principles of liberty, equality and fraternity. At the same time we should ensure that none of these three values suffers a set-back in the process, because these three together make an inseparable whole. Moreover, none of them may be taken away without seriously jeopardising the remaining structure by encouraging symptoms of oligarchy and discouraging individual incentive. While we may achieve equality in politics, our social and economic life will suffer from inequality. If we want to preserve our democracy, we should free our society of this asymmetry. In this way our democracy will prosper on the social base.

(205 words)

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