The tabling and subsequent withdrawal of the Judges (Declaration of Assets and Liabilities) Act, 2009 by the Law Minister Veerappa Moily has raised several key questions pertaining to the power of the RTI Act 2005 and judicial accountability. The subsequent hue-and-cry among the opposition & civil society organizations and the media interest generated on what … Continue reading "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"
In the 2009 parliamentary elections, Delhi registered a 53% voter turnout – the highest in twenty years and the second highest among metropolitan cities in India. The media attributed this development to increase in middle-class vote, most due to aggressive political awareness campaigns by the election commission and popular media. This may be true to … Continue reading "What is driving the Indian middle class towards electoral politics?"
Last week the Hindustan Times quoted a prominent Central Information Commissioner, Mr. Shailesh Gandhi, warning the country that the government and the judiciary together pose a serious threat to the RTI. Gandhi argued that the government’s infrastructure – training, resources – for the implementation of the RTI is woefully inadequate. He also highlighted the role … Continue reading "How effective is India’s Right to Information Act (RTI)?"
What effect do information campaigns have on the political behaviour of citizens and their representatives?
In a democracy, having cast their votes and investing their elected representative with the power to govern them, citizens have a right to know how they are being governed, and to demand detailed scrutiny of the process. In this sense, information about their government is something that citizens have a reason to value intrinsically. But … Continue reading "What effect do information campaigns have on the political behaviour of citizens and their representatives?"
Neighborhood Associations have assumed an important role in public policy decision making as the principal voice of the middle class across urban India. In recent years, these associations have sought a more formal role in policy making by contesting for political office in local elections in at least five major cities. This is significant not … Continue reading "Indian Middle Class and Electoral Politics"