DEMOCRACY OR AUTOCRACY: IN BANGLADESH

democracy in Bangladesh

Nowadays, the burning topic of the newspapers of Bangladesh is the crossfire, repression over the opposition political parties, extrajudicial killing by the law enforcing agencies etc. Law enforcing agencies are one of the parts of the state apparatus. In this context, the violence created by them can be identified as the state organized violence. Most of the scholars’ views show that state organized violence is the result of faulty state apparatus. I think transitional democratic states are more prone to state organized violence because they run through the immature stage of democratization. The democracy practiced in Bangladesh is nothing but transitional democracy. Here, democracy is merely used in the parliament. Political parties do not have any say in the government. They are deprived of their democratic rights to express their opinion. They become the victims of the oppression by the law enforcing agencies. This is very much alarming for the practice of democracy. For that reason, I think that this area should be studied in a structured manner if Bangladesh is a democratic or autocratic country.

Democracy refers to the form of government, which includes genuine competition for power. Moreover, it permits participation of the masses on a legally equal footing, provides civil and other liberties which constrain the sphere of state power within the society, promotes widespread deliberation about how to make and enforce policy so as to promote the common good.

Transitional democracy, therefore, implies that the process of democratization is not matured to have all the elements of democracy. Rather, democracy in transitional stage has some loopholes which can accelerate violence within a state by itself. At this stage of democratization, state apparatus becomes weak and cannot cope up with the new trend. For this reason, the state apparatus acts repressively.

The repressive state apparatus consists of the police, the army, the judiciary and the prison system. Mental and physical coercion, latent and actual violence are primarily operated by it. So, undemocratic attitudes of the democratic institutions are the results.

The repressive state apparatus is responsible for state sponsored violence where the state itself creates violence or environment of potential violence to become the victorious over the opposition parties. Bangladesh’s state apparatus are very much government oriented. It means that the state agencies and the machineries act only according to the government wish. Opposition parties barely have opportunities to demand their rights. Consequently, they cannot be able to perform their duties.

Since the independence of Bangladesh, we have been trying heart and soul to institutionalize democracy in our state system. But our endeavors are proved to be failed due to a number of factors. In the present situation of Bangladesh, we experience political turmoil each and every day. For that reason, the process of democracy is being questioned here. Whether we are in democracy or autocracy.

If we want to answer the above question, different types of opinions will arise. But the theoretical discussion can give us the satisfactory answer. Bangladesh is passing through a stage of democracy which can be termed as transitional democracy. At this stage of democracy, the political institutions become vulnerable as they are not enough matured for the institutional reforms that are very essential for democracy.

Democratization process demands a long way to go. Most of the renowned democratic countries of this time were not like in a state earlier. They had to struggle with the prevalent political system. The struggle for democracy is often violent. Bangladesh is passing through the democratization process where each and every political institution is poorly functioning. But there are some other loopholes for which our democratic practices are proved to be autocratic.

Corruption has spread throughout the society. There is no sphere of life where corruption is not present. It has become the root problem that breeds to some other problems in our country. But the most disastrous impact it has made is the corrupted political system in Bangladesh. The bureaucracy, the government officials, the law enforcing agencies, the party politicians are hardly performing their duties with honesty, rather they act according to their own interest.

Another factor that has an immense impact on our political system is partisan politics. It refers to the manner of choosing political representatives on the basis of party background. In Bangladesh, most of people often choose the candidate of their favourite party during the election. They hardly look for the candidate who is suitable on the basis of qualification, honesty and so on. As a result, the wrong people are given the opportunity to run the state apparatus. Thus, democratic election fails to institutionalize democracy in the state system.

One of the most important loopholes that impede the democratization is weak institutional arrangement of the state. This is really a very important element to ensure democracy in a society. The fragile state apparatus cannot cope up with the changes and modifications for democratic behavior of the state system.

Vibrant civil society is a must for a democratic state. On the other hand, civil society of Bangladesh is hardly vibrant, rather they are biased nowadays. For that reason, we are lagging behind the democratization process and our state is acting autocratically.

While concluding my discussion, I can admit that being a citizen of an independent country, we have certain rights and duties towards our beloved country. Bangladesh is a country which is struggling for being a democratic country. But it has been a great regret that we are in a transitional period due to some factors for which our state apparatus are becoming authoritative and autocratic. Opposition parties are deprived of their rights to express, assemble. Moreover, they are beaten up by the law enforcing agencies if they do the otherwise. Furthermore, they are not entitled to organize any peaceful movement against the government. But it is not democratic characteristic of a state. That is why, Bangladesh has been identified as an autocratic state with the title of the democratic state. But we still believe that our responsible effort can change the scenario and establish Bangladesh as a democratic state.Nowadays, the burning topic of the newspapers of Bangladesh is the crossfire, repression over the opposition political parties, extrajudicial killing by the law enforcing agencies etc. Law enforcing agencies are one of the parts of the state apparatus. In this context, the violence created by them can be identified as the state organized violence. Most of the scholars’ views show that state organized violence is the result of faulty state apparatus. I think transitional democratic states are more prone to state organized violence because they run through the immature stage of democratization. The democracy practiced in Bangladesh is nothing but transitional democracy. Here, democracy is merely used in the parliament. Political parties do not have any say in the government. They are deprived of their democratic rights to express their opinion. They become the victims of the oppression by the law enforcing agencies. This is very much alarming for the practice of democracy. For that reason, I think that this area should be studied in a structured manner if Bangladesh is a democratic or autocratic country.

Democracy refers to the form of government, which includes genuine competition for power. Moreover, it permits participation of the masses on a legally equal footing, provides civil and other liberties which constrain the sphere of state power within the society, promotes widespread deliberation about how to make and enforce policy so as to promote the common good.

Transitional democracy, therefore, implies that the process of democratization is not matured to have all the elements of democracy. Rather, democracy in transitional stage has some loopholes which can accelerate violence within a state by itself. At this stage of democratization, state apparatus becomes weak and cannot cope up with the new trend. For this reason, the state apparatus acts repressively.

The repressive state apparatus consists of the police, the army, the judiciary and the prison system. Mental and physical coercion, latent and actual violence are primarily operated by it. So, undemocratic attitudes of the democratic institutions are the results.

The repressive state apparatus is responsible for state sponsored violence where the state itself creates violence or environment of potential violence to become the victorious over the opposition parties. Bangladesh’s state apparatus are very much government oriented. It means that the state agencies and the machineries act only according to the government wish. Opposition parties barely have opportunities to demand their rights. Consequently, they cannot be able to perform their duties.

Since the independence of Bangladesh, we have been trying heart and soul to institutionalize democracy in our state system. But our endeavors are proved to be failed due to a number of factors. In the present situation of Bangladesh, we experience political turmoil each and every day. For that reason, the process of democracy is being questioned here. Whether we are in democracy or autocracy.

If we want to answer the above question, different types of opinions will arise. But the theoretical discussion can give us the satisfactory answer. Bangladesh is passing through a stage of democracy which can be termed as transitional democracy. At this stage of democracy, the political institutions become vulnerable as they are not enough matured for the institutional reforms that are very essential for democracy.

Democratization process demands a long way to go. Most of the renowned democratic countries of this time were not like in a state earlier. They had to struggle with the prevalent political system. The struggle for democracy is often violent. Bangladesh is passing through the democratization process where each and every political institution is poorly functioning. But there are some other loopholes for which our democratic practices are proved to be autocratic.

Corruption has spread throughout the society. There is no sphere of life where corruption is not present. It has become the root problem that breeds to some other problems in our country. But the most disastrous impact it has made is the corrupted political system in Bangladesh. The bureaucracy, the government officials, the law enforcing agencies, the party politicians are hardly performing their duties with honesty, rather they act according to their own interest.

Another factor that has an immense impact on our political system is partisan politics. It refers to the manner of choosing political representatives on the basis of party background. In Bangladesh, most of people often choose the candidate of their favourite party during the election. They hardly look for the candidate who is suitable on the basis of qualification, honesty and so on. As a result, the wrong people are given the opportunity to run the state apparatus. Thus, democratic election fails to institutionalize democracy in the state system.

One of the most important loopholes that impede the democratization is weak institutional arrangement of the state. This is really a very important element to ensure democracy in a society. The fragile state apparatus cannot cope up with the changes and modifications for democratic behavior of the state system.

Vibrant civil society is a must for a democratic state. On the other hand, civil society of Bangladesh is hardly vibrant, rather they are biased nowadays. For that reason, we are lagging behind the democratization process and our state is acting autocratically.

While concluding my discussion, I can admit that being a citizen of an independent country, we have certain rights and duties towards our beloved country. Bangladesh is a country which is struggling for being a democratic country. But it has been a great regret that we are in a transitional period due to some factors for which our state apparatus are becoming authoritative and autocratic. Opposition parties are deprived of their rights to express, assemble. Moreover, they are beaten up by the law enforcing agencies if they do the otherwise. Furthermore, they are not entitled to organize any peaceful movement against the government. But it is not democratic characteristic of a state. That is why, Bangladesh has been identified as an autocratic state with the title of the democratic state. But we still believe that our responsible effort can change the scenario and establish Bangladesh as a democratic state.

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