Let India be governed by the best and cleanest administrators by abolishing party politics
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Problems with India's political system:
1. Politicians try to project themselves as mass leaders as if they are carrying the legacy of leaders of our freedom struggle. They dress like them and hold mass rallies like them. Mass leaders are needed to mobilise masses to amass enough bargaining power to stand up to a ruler or a government. They are neither needed nor effective for running a government. Today India is a democratic country and has left its colonial past far behind. It is now ruled by its own elected citizens. These need to be the best governors not the best mass leaders.
2. The system does not ensure that the most able persons run the country. It encourages rent seekers to occupy the elected position by bribing the electorate and then suck the resources while in office. There are enough examples of senior leaders engaging in blatant corruption.
3. At the highest level our politicians are supposed to take key policy decisions which have sweeping impact on the population. Hence it is paramount that they have the intelligence, exposure and experience to enumerate, evaluate and select their options wisely. An average citizen has no way of making that assessment for a potential candidate in an election.
4. At the moment one needs to invest a lot of money on campaigning to win an election. There is no legal mechanism to arrange this money. As a result election funding is the biggest illegal money collection exercise in the country. Honest people are automatically eliminated from the process.
5. The multi-party system creates severe problems of affiliation based politics (caste, ideology, religion etc.) and dynastic politics which are detrimental for a country like India which has huge diversities.
The ideal solution:
1. India should be governed by the best governors and not by mass leaders. There should be objective qualification criteria for someone to file a nomination for candidature in an election.
a. The minimum qualification criteria for a national election should be at least one complete term of 6 years with a state legislature.
b. The minimum qualification criteria for a state election should be at least at least 20 years’ experience of working in an organised set up and at least 6 years’ experience of holding a position of significant responsibility like senior IAS or IPS officers, senior army or police officers, high court or supreme court judges, CEOs of a large listed organisations, chairmen of large PSUs, senior professors of major universities, elected representatives of municipal bodies etc.
c. There should be express disqualification of those who have held these positions by reasons other than performance over their careers like nominees of investors, kin of politicians, major shareholders etc.
d. There should be express disqualification for anyone with a proven history of crime or corruption.
2. The multi-party system should be scrapped. Every candidate should be an independent individual and should contest on the basis of his/her performance rather than affiliation or dynastic inheritence. The pictures of the candidates should be present on the EVMs instead of party symbols.
3. Election campaigning should be on a level playing field in the form of televised debates rather than public rallies. These are shows of strength which goes against the very spirit of democracy.
4. President at the centre and Governor in the state should be highly empowered executive positions.
5. Once a house is elected it should elect its President/Governor by internal vote. The President/Governor should then select his/her council of ministers. The candidates applying for a ministerial position should present their plan of action if they get elected to the council of ministers. The number of seats and departments of the council of ministers should be fixed by constitution.
6. Executive powers should be accompanied by accountability and vigilance. The performance of the President/Governor and his/her council of ministers should be reported every six months on objective parameters. Their meetings should be recorded and available for public viewing online.
7. Apart from the council of ministers, the other MPs and MLAs should be required to spend most of their time in their respective constituencies.
8. The House should not be elected or dissolved all at once. 1/3rd of the house should retire by rotation every 3 years. The President/Governor should be re-elected every two years after every part election.
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