India’s Unlikely Democracy: Six Decades of Independence

Issue Date April 2007
Volume 18
Issue 2
Page Numbers 30-40
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Contrary to popular belief, British colonial legacies do not explain India’s successful transition to democracy in its postindependence era. Rather the democratic underpinnings of the Indian nationalist movement ensured the adoption of a democratic form of government. In subsequent years, India’s democracy has weathered threats and been consolidated. Though Indian democracy is hardly bereft of shortcomings, social forces are likely to contribute to the further deepening of democracy. The country must also make a concerted attempt to bolster the robustness and efficacy of a range of institutions and procedures if it hopes to extend the promise of democracy to its entire population.

About the Author

Šumit Ganguly is Distinguished Professor of Political Science and holds the Rabindranath Tagore Chair in Indian Cultures and Civilizations at Indiana University, Bloomington, and is a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. He is the author (with William Thompson) of Ascending India and Its State Capacity (2017).

View all work by Šumit Ganguly