When Institutional Democracy becomes so entrenched in Systemic Corruption, Popular Democracy – protests and demonstrations – can help rejuvenate civic activism, and make the Government more responsive to the People and their demands. After all, Democracy institutionalizes civil and political liberties, providing legal guarantees to make free choices in their private and public activities. I believe that the India Against Corruption Movement and Anna Hazare’s efforts are such examples of civic activism and an expression of the values of democracy.
The Jan Lokpal bill was first introduced by Shanti Bhushan in 1968 and passed in the 4th Lok Sabha in 1969. However, it did not get through in the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Parliament of India. Subsequent versions were re-introduced in 1971, 1977, 1985, 1989, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2005 and in 2008. But these never passed.
For those of us who are not fully aware of what the Jan Lokpal Bill is about – please read a summary at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Lokpal_Bill
When Indian political leaders will not allow a bill that seeks to hold them responsible for their actions, what choice do the people of India have but to resort to the methods of Popular Democracy?