Group Discussion on Democracy

India is the largest democracy in the world. By definition, democracy is government of the people, by the people and for the people. But are we really following the very core of democracy and ensuring that the government we elect protects our democracy?

Since democracy and threat to democracy is always a hot topic for debate, you may expect one in your GD session. Below are facts, quotes, possible GD topics on Democracy and arguments to help you deal with one.

Some facts about Democracies in the world:

  • Out of the 193 countries that are members of the United Nations, 167 are democracies.
  • One in three people in the world are under autocracy because China, the world's largest population, is not democratic.
  • The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) categorises democracies into Full Democracies, Flawed Democracies, Hybrid Regimes and Authoritarian Regimes. India comes under flawed democracy.
  • While most countries with population above 500,000 hold elections, these five countries have had no elections between 2000 and 2012 - China, Eritrea, Qatar, Saudi Arabia & United Arab Emirates.
  • The top 25 richest countries in the world are democracies.
  • While India has direct democracy, US have indirect democracy or representative republic.
  • Freedom of expression should be a major determinant of a democracy. However, most counties have ways in which it curbs free speech.
  • Voting age varies in different countries. While it is 18 in most countries, some countries have it from 16.

Possible group discussion topics on Democracy:

1. Direct democracy versus indirect democracy - which is better?
2. Democracy versus autocracy - which is better in today's world?
3. A Presidential government would be better for India.
4. What makes India a flawed democracy?
5. Democracy is only on the papers, government still acts as autocratic ruler.
6. Democracy has hampered India's growth.
7. EVM tampering is a serious threat to democracy and should be scrutinized carefully.
8. Ballot box system of voting was safer than EVMs.
9. Breaking code of conduct during elections should be punishable.
10. Voting should be made compulsory in democracies.
11. Should voting age be reduced to 16 or increased to 20?
12. Did 2017 shatter Hong Kong's image of democracy?
13. Will US be able to pass EU's democracy test?
14. Is rise of populism in Europe a threat to democracy?
15. Will Rajnikant's entry into politics change the threat to democracy?

Some quotes that can be used in the group discussions on Democracy:

"Our great democracies still tend to think that a stupid man is more likely to be honest than a clever man, and our politicians take advantage of this prejudice by pretending to be even more stupid than nature made them."
- Bertrand Russell, New Hopes for a Changing World

Democracy is better:

1. Fair: No political party or leader is perfect but democracy is fair as people have the ultimate power to put them in their place.

2. Freedom: The citizens of a democratic nation are free to criticize as well as complain against the misuse of power by the ruling government.

3. Pressure: Even if political parties don't care a dime for the wellbeing of the people, they are under pressure to protect the rights of people and act necessarily when required.

4. Opposition: They are always there to make sure that the government keeps its words or gets criticised for it time and again.

5. Right to question: It is the money of public that is being given to the politicians and these hard working people have the right to know where it is being invested.

Autocracy is better:

1. Far simpler: It would avoid the whole party politics system that creates loopholes for diving people on basis on religion, caste, etc.

2. The right person: There are suitable and well qualified people who can be bestowed the responsibility of the nation.

3. Democracy didn't work: Politicians still seem to find ways to launder black money, carry out scams, and manipulate people.

4. Divided we stand: When the nation is divided by a lot of factors, it is difficult to ensure democracy and people put these facts above what's right for the whole nation.

5. Development: India will forever remain a developing nation under democracy. Autocracy can concentrate better on development plans.


Democracy is the best form of governance but a flawed democracy is a threat to rights and justice of people. A stricter system should be developed to ensure that the ruling party stops acting as an autocrat in the name of republic democracy.

We hope that this GD guide is helpful to you in answering GDs related to democracy at your entrance exams and placements.