What do you mean by democratic type of Government ?

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According to our Constitu­tion India is a Sovereign, Socialistic, Secular, Demo­cratic Republic. Sovereign means we are a free and independent country. We are not under any internal or external domination. Socialistic means we have a socialistic pattern of society. All the people of the country should get equal opportunity to be benefited from our resources. Secular means there is no State religion. All the religions have equal respect before the law, Every citizen is free to profess, propagate and worship any religion he likes. Democratic means it is a Government run by the people or the elected representatives of the people. The real power vests in the people of the 'country. They are the real masters. Republic means there is no king. The Rashtrapati of the country who is elected by the elected representatives of the people is the Head of the State. He is the Chief Commander of defense forces. All powers are vested in him. The administra­tion of the country is run on behalf of the Rashtrapati. Our Rashtrapati is elected for a period of five years.

General Elections are held in the country every, five years. The whole of the country is divided into about 550 constituencies. Every constituency elects a member of Parliament or an M.P. Every citizen who is above the age of 18 years is a voter. Voting is done by secret ballot. Every voter is given a ballot paper. It contains the names and symbols of all the candidates who are contesting the elections from a constituency. The voter goes to a secret compartment and marks the candidate of his choice with a rubber stamp. He folds the ballot paper secretly and puts it in a sealed ballot box. The ballot boxes are taken to a counting centre. Here all the boxes are opened and ballot papers are mixed. Then the votes are counted. The candidate who secures the largest number of votes is declared elected. He becomes an M.P. or a Member of Parliament. Any voter who is above 25 years of age can become a candidate for the elections. Candidates who win in the State elections enter the State Legislature. The representatives of the State Legislature are called Members of the Legislative Assembly or MLA's.

The party which has the largest number of M.P's, elects its leader. The Rashtrapati invites the leader of the majority party to form the Government. The leader of the majority party is appointed the- Prime Minister by the Rashtrapati. The Prime Minister recommends the names of the other members who are appointed Ministers by the Rashtrapati. The Prime Minister allots different departments to his Council of Ministers. The Council of Ministers assists the Prime Minister in running the administration of the country.

The Parliament of our country consists of two houses. The Lower House is known as Lok Sabha or the House of People. It has about 550 M.P.S who are elected by the people. The Upper House is called Rajya Sabha or the Council of States. It has about 250 members. Its members are elected by the members of the State Legislative'^ Assemblies. Rajya Sabha is a permanent j house. One third of its members retire every two years and new members are elected. About 12 members of the Rajya Sabha are nominated by the Rashtrapati from among the eminent scholars, scientists, writers or artists.

The members of . both houses of Parliament and the State Legislative Assemblies vote to elect the President of India. The members of the Parliament sit in the Parliament House and discuss and frame laws for the whole of the country. If the Prime Minister does not discharge his duties well the Parliament can remove him by passing a vote of no-confidence against him. The Parliament is also empowered to impeach the President of India for his wrong actions.

Judiciary is the third wing of the Union Government. We have an independent judiciary. The highest court of justice in the country is the Supreme Court of India. The Supreme Court of India is at Delhi. It is headed by the Chief Justice of India. The

Chief Justice of India is appointed by the President of India. The other judges of the Supreme Court of India are appointed by the President (Rashtrapati) on the recommendation of the Chief Justice of India. The Supreme Court of India is the guardian of our fundamental rights. It settles important disputes of National importance. The disputes between different States and the disputes between the Centre and the States are also referred to the Supreme Court for judgment.


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