Photo: Sushil Kumar Verma

IGLP alum, Ajay Gudavarthi of the Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, wrote an op-ed article “In Defense of the Politician” that focuses on the anti-graft movement in India. Gudavarthi grapples with challenging questions about the relationship between politicians, the populous, and the process of forming democratic thought. By exploring the challenges that a politician can face when becoming a voice for social interests and cultural beliefs, Gudavarthi reveals the case for supporting politicians.

Excerpt from “In Defense of the Politician”:

“If one is serious about democracy, one cannot afford to overlook the consequences of these two different plains and their implications for democracy. While it is easy to correlate popular will with social activism against corruption, the moment it enters political/electoral politics the dynamics undergo dramatic transformation. It is relatively easy to generate consent and consensus in the social domain especially against issues such as corruption; every individual and social group can afford to concede the point that corruption is illegitimate, morally degrading and undermines democracy. However, politics has to do with concrete interests and wider social, and cultural beliefs and prejudices of individuals and social groups and does not have the privilege to pick and choose issues.”

Click HERE to read the article!