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House of the People: Parliament and the Making of Indian Democracy

18 Oct Book cover: 'House of the People: Parliament and the Making of Indian Democracy' Part of King's India Institute Seminar Series

While there is overwhelming support for democracy in India and voter turnout is higher than in many Western democracies, there are low levels of trust in political parties and elected representatives.

This book is an attempt to look beyond Indian elections, which has increasingly occupied analysts and commentators. It focuses on the Lok Sabha (The House of the People), comprising 543 members directly elected for five years by a potential 800 million plus voters in 2019.

The book seeks to answer two questions: Is the Indian Parliament, which has the unenviable task of representing a diverse nation of a billion-plus people, working, if not in an exemplary manner, at least reasonably well, to articulate the diverse demands of the electorate and translate them into legislation and policy? To what extent has the practice of Indian democracy transformed the institution of parliament, which was adopted from the British, and its functioning?

About the author

Ronojoy Sen

Ronojoy Sen is Senior Research Fellow (and Research Lead, Politics, Society and Governance) at the Institute of South Asian Studies and the South Asian Studies Programme, National University of Singapore. He has worked for over a decade with leading Indian newspapers, most recently as an editor for The Times of India. He is the author of Articles of Faith: Religion, Secularism, and the Indian Supreme Court (Oxford, 2010) and Nation at Play: A History of Sport in India (Columbia University Press, 2015).

Chair

Louise Tillin

Professor Louise Tillin is Director, King’s India Institute and Professor of Politics. Louise’s research interests span federalism, democracy and territorial politics in India, and the history and politics of social policy design and implementation. Louise is a regular commentator on Indian politics in UK, Indian and international media. She is an editor of the journal Regional and Federal Studies, and an editorial board member of Pacific Affairs.

Discussants

Shirin M. Rai

Shirin M. Rai is Professor in the Department of Politics and International Studies and the Director of Warwick Interdisciplinary Research Centre for International Development (WICID) at the University of Warwick. She is a Fellow of the British Academy. Shirin Rai is an interdisciplinary scholar and has written extensively on issues of gender, governance and development and politics and performance. In particular, she has been working on issues of gendered care and work and the costs of this carework, and on developing a framework of politics and performance across the social sciences/humanities boundaries.

Carole Spary

Carole Spary is an Associate Professor at University of Nottingham. Dr Spary's research and teaching focuses on aspects of democratic politics and development, particularly gender, development, political representation and political institutions, and specialises in politics and policy in India. She is currently the Deputy Director of the University of Nottingham's Asia Research Institute.

 

 The venue for this event is TBC.


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