Essay on Expansion of Democracy in the World After 1980
The next big push towards the expansion of democracy came after mid-1980s, especially after the disintegration of the federation of (U.S.S.R.) or Soviet Union. Let us take the case of Poland. In 1980, Poland was governed by the Polish United Workers Party, which had maintained itself in power by imposing a one-party monopoly of power.
It did not permit anyone to oppose official party-line. Those who spoke against the government were put into prison. All the big factories and <property were owned by the government. Trade unions in these factories independent of the ruling party were not allowed. In 1980, the workers of Lenin Shipyard started a strike. The strike spread under Lech Walesa who became the leader ultimately.
The Government had to give in and sign an agreement with the workers under Lech Walesa in 1989 for holding free elections in the country. In this election, Solidarity, the party formed by the striking workers’ Lender Walesa won 99 out of total 100 seats. In 1990, Walesa became the first popularly elected President of Poland and this way Poland became a democracy.
At present, Veronica Michelle Bacholet, is the democratically elected President of Chile. She was elected President in 2006.
In India’s neighbourhood also major changes took place. Pakistan and Bangladesh made a transition from army rule to democratic governments in 1990s. In Nepal, the Monarch gave up many of his powers and became a ‘constitutional monarch’, to be guided by elected leaders.
In Nepal democracy has been fully restored and even the institution of Monarchy has been abolished in the country. At present a democratically elected government is governing the country.
Similarly, in Pakistan, democracy has been fully restored. In the general elections held in 2008, a democratically elected government, with Asif Ali Zardari as President is running the administration of the country.
Although, these changes were not permanent in Pakistan and Nepal, yet there was a trend of more and more countries turning to democracy during this period. By 2002 about 140 countries were holding multiple-party elections.
However, even today, there are many countries where people cannot express their opinion freely. They still cannot elect their leaders. Myanmar (called Burma earlier) is one such example where people are still struggling for establishing a democratic government.