NCERT Solutions for Class 9 Social Science Democratic Politics-I Chapter 3 - Electoral Politics

Q:

Ramesh was not in class when this chapter was being taught. He came the next day and repeated what he had heard from his father. Can you tell Ramesh what is wrong with these statements?
  1. Women always vote the way men tell them to. So what is the point of giving them the right to vote?
  2. Party politics creates tension in society. Elections should be decided by consensus not by competition.
  3. Only graduates should be allowed to stand as candidates for elections.

A:

  1. The statement is wrong because the policy of secret ballot ensures that a person can vote for whoever he/she wants. Women are fully capable of taking decisions on their own and choosing the right candidate.
  2. Competition works as both deterrent and motivator for the political candidates. A fear of losing the election and a motivation for winning the elections works in favour of people.
  3. Educational qualification is not required to understand people’s needs, and to represent their interests. Therefore, our constitution does not mention any such minimum qualification to compete in elections.

Q:

Here are some reports of malpractices in Indian elections. Identify what the problem in each case is. What should be done to correct the situation?
  1. Following the announcement of elections, the minister promised to provide financial aid to reopen the closed sugar mill.
  2. Opposition parties alleged that their statements and campaign was not given due attention in Doordarshan and All India Radio.
  3. An inquiry by the Election Commission showed that electoral rolls of a state contain names of 20 lakh fake voters.
  4. The hoodlums of a political party were moving with guns, physically preventing supporters of other political parties to meet the voters and attacking meetings of other parties.

A:

  1. After announcement of election, it is not legal to announce policy decisions according to Code of Conduct. The minister should be immediately taken to task by the Election Commission.
  2. The election commission must ensure that all political parties are given equal opportunity to appear on Doordarshan and All India Radio. EC should take action against ruling party if it is misusing media.
  3. The presence of the fake voters means that the elections were rigged by the authorities who prepared the electoral rolls. The election commission should supervise preparation of fresh electoral rolls.
  4. By using hoodlums, the political party is terrorizing its opponents. The election commission should order the arrest of the hoodlums and bar the party from the elections.

Q:

Here are some reports of electoral malpractices from different parts of the world. Is there anything that these countries can learn from India to improve their elections? What would you suggest in each case?
  1. During an election in Nigeria, the officer in charge of counting votes deliberately increased the votes of one candidate and declared him elected. The court later found out that more than five lakh votes cast for one candidate were counted in favour of another.
  2. Just before elections in Fiji, a pamphlet was distributed warning voters that a vote for former Prime Minister, Mahendra Chaudhry will lead to bloodshed. This was a threat to voters of Indian origin.
  3. In the US, each state has its own method of voting, its own procedure of counting and its own authority for conducting elections. Authorities in the state of Florida took many controversial decisions that favoured Mr. Bush in the presidential elections in 2000. But no one could change those decisions.

A:

  1. The Election Commission in India ensures that representatives of each candidate are present during counting of votes. In the same way, the election conducting body in Nigeria should also ensure that representatives of each candidate are present at the time of counting.
  2. The election conducting body in Fiji should set up an enquiry into the case and debar the candidate or party involved in distributing such pamphlets.
  3. There should be a single election commission on the lines of India. It should be free from political influence and should be responsible for conducting elections in all the states of America.

Q:

Chinappa was convicted for torturing his wife for dowry. Satbir was held guilty of practicing untouchability. The court did not allow either of them to contest elections. Does this decision go against the principles of democratic elections?

A:

This decision is not against the democratic principles. Torturing wife and practicing untouchability are serious crimes. People involved in these crimes cannot ensure security to women and the ‘low castes’ if voted to power.

As per recent Supreme Court directions, a person with serious criminal cases pending against him/her has to make legal declaration about the cases in detail.

Q:

Can we draw the following conclusions from the information given in this chapter? Give two facts to support your position for each of these.
  1. Election Commission of India does not have enough powers to conduct free and fair elections in the country.
  2. There is a high level of popular participation in the elections in our country.
  3. It is very easy for the party in power to win an election.
  4. Many reforms are needed to make our elections completely free and fair.

A:

  1. This is the wrong conclusion.

Reasons –

  1. EC implements the Code of Conduct and punishes any candidate or party that violates it.
  2. During election, EC can order the government to follow certain guidelines, to prevent use and misuse of governmental power to enhance its chances to win the election.

b. This is the right conclusion.

Reasons –

  1. In the last 50 years, voter turnout in Europe and America has decreased, but in India the turnout has either remained stable or increased.
  2. Interest of voters in election related activities has been increasing over the years.

c. This is the wrong conclusion.

Reasons –

  1. Ruling parties routinely lose elections both at the national and state level.
  2. Candidates who spend a lot of money or have a criminal background often lose elections.

d. This is the right conclusion.

Reasons –

  1. Some candidates manage to win elections because of money power.
  2. In some parts of the country, candidates with criminal backgrounds manage to contest and win elections.

Q:

The table below gives the proportion of different communities among the candidates who won elections to the US Congress. Compare these to the proportion of these communities in the population of the US. Based on this, would you suggest a system of reservations in the US Congress? If yes, why and for which communities? If no, why not?
Proportion of the community (in percent) in the
House of Representatives Population of US
Blacks 8 13
Hispanics 5 13
Whites 86 70

A:

Blacks and Hispanics should be given reservation in the US Congress as per their percentage in the US population. The table clearly shows that Blacks and Hispanics are under-represented in the House of Representatives as compared to the Whites.

Q:

Surekha is an officer in-charge of ensuring free and fair elections in an assembly constituency in a state. Describe what she should focus on for each of the following stages of election:
  1. Election campaign
  2. Polling day
  3. Counting day

A:

  1. Surekha will have to focus on various duties such as ensure that –

  • candidates do not bribe or threaten voters
  • expenditure limit is not crossed by a candidate
  • candidates do not use caste or religion to appeal for votes
  • they do not use worship place for campaign or use any government resources

  1. On the polling day, Surekha will have to crosscheck the voters’ list and check ID proofs of the voters. She will have to ensure that booth capturing does not take place. She will have to make sure that the election is free and fair in all respects.

  1. Surekha will have to supervise the counting process. She will have to make sure that representatives of all the political parties are present while the counting is going on. This will ensure that no malpractices take place during counting.

Q:

List all the different election related activities mentioned in the chapter and arrange them in a time sequence, beginning with the first activity and ending with the last. Some of these activities are given below: releasing election manifestos; counting of votes; making of voters’ list; election campaign; declaration of election results; casting of votes; ordering of re-poll; announcing election schedule; filing nomination.

A:

The sequence of election related activities is as follows –

  1. Making of voters’ list
  2. Announcing election schedule
  3. Releasing election manifestos
  4. Election campaign
  5. Filing nomination
  6. Casting of votes
  7. Ordering of re-poll
  8. Counting of votes
  9. Declaration of election results

Q:

Match the following:
a. It is necessary to keep the voters’ list up to date because i. there is a fair representation of all sections of the society
b. Some constituencies are reserved for SCs and STs so that ii. everyone has equal opportunity to elect their representatives
c. Everyone has one and only one vote so that iii. all candidates must have a fair chance of competing in elections
d. Party in power is not allowed to use government vehicles because iv. some people may have moved away from the area where they voted last

A:

a – iv; b – i; c – ii; d – iii;

Q:

Which of these is not a good reason to say that Indian elections are democratic?
  1. India has the largest number of voters in the world.
  2. India’s Election Commission is very powerful.
  3. In India, everyone above the age of 18 has a right to vote.
  4. In India, the losing parties accept the electoral verdict.

A:

  1. India has the largest number of voters in the world.

Q:

Which of the following statements about the reasons for conducting elections is false?
  1. Elections enable people to judge the performance of the government.
  2. People select the representative of their choice in an election.
  3. Elections enable people to evaluate the performance of the judiciary.
  4. People can indicate which policies they prefer.

A:

c. Elections enable people to evaluate the performance of the judiciary

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