Determinants Of Peace Democracy

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Determinants of Stable and Peaceful Democracies:
A Comparison of India and Pakistan

Once part of the same dominion, India and Pakistan saw diverging political trajectories after partition in August 1947. Save for a period of emergency rule under Indira Gandhi between 1975-77, India is largely depicted as having successfully consolidated a stable and peaceful democracy. In contrast, Pakistan has alternated between military dictatorship and weak democracy characterised by violence. Comparing the trajectories of both nations after partition, this paper contends that while political institutions are important determinants in either impeding or supporting democratisation and ensuring peace, they must be appraised in relation to economic and cultural factors. This essay uses a nominal definition of democracy: a system of representative government with multiple political parties contesting in free and fair elections, the separation of powers and political institutions, in addition to civil liberties that impose
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Political parties often point towards their economic achievements as justification towards continued and expanded rule, such as the BJP in India, or the military in Pakistan; whereas in other countries, the electorate may choose to exchange certain civil rights for peace, stability, and economic growth (i.e. Malaysia and Singapore). Additionally, these links between representative politics and economic policy manifest even at the colonial stage – because the British viewed India as commercially significant, they accommodated and developed “a system of elective local government to secure consent for additional taxation” (Talbot 2013, 28). In all, political determinants are more important than economic factors in the consolidation of a stable and peaceful democracy, especially because India and Pakistan emerged from partition with similar economic

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