August 15, 2022 marked the beginning of India's 75th year of independence. The year was significant in another way too-as the precursor to elections in 2024. With an incumbent government that in the last ten years has undertaken widespread changes, some controversial, how the people will vote in this election points to more than the usual selection of representatives to the Parliament: they would also be showing their approval for the direction some would like the country to take. Is India still a secular, sovereign, democratic country in the same sense as the founding fathers of the republic envisaged? How has the country fared on matters of governance? Do the economic policies assure a secure future for the people? As P. Chidambaram reminds us, democracy is not just voting once every five years. Democracy has to be practised every day, through dialogue, discussion, debate and dissent. His column takes on the issues without flinching or ambiguity. It is an Opposition view, but even discounting party politics, one that provides a valuable perspective. As India prepares for elections, the arguments in The Watershed Year will help clarify the basis for judging which way we want to go.
The Watershed Year
Number Of Pages:
18 January 2024
One of the senior-most Opposition leaders, P. Chidambaram has held finance and home portfolios, among others. He is also prominent as a practising lawyer.