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Political system comparison between India and China Research Paper


Unmistakably, India and China have gradually developed in the economic sectors due to effective organization in their political systems. The two countries found in the Asian continent, despite being third world countries, have advanced in the technological know how. It is unbelievable that the western countries face a serious competition from these nations due to the political stability found in the two countries.

The political systems in China and India are stable therefore the two countries have developed both econonomically and socially (Wang, 2003). Consequently, this paper attempts to compare their political systems, process and the policies in China and India. Finally, the paper hypothesizes the future of India and China in relation to their political systems.

India is a democratic country which is headed by the president. The major functions of the president include; powers to declare the state of emergency that allows the lower house (Lok sabha) to extend the five year term, chief legal adviser of the government and signing of the bills from the parliament (Manion, 2000).

The members of parliament have an obligation to vote for a persistent president. Among the members of parliament is the Electoral College. An electoral college is made up of the lawmakers. The number of these members is proposed to be 4500. Also there is a post of vice president who is elected by the members from both the upper and the lower houses. An individual who has an obligation to chair the upper house is the vice president. The upper house of the Indian parliament is identified as Rajya Sabha (Goldstein, 1990).

India has got the post of prime minister who is the head of the government affairs. Some stages are usually followed during the selection of a prime minister. First, a group of individuals from the lower house are expected to nominate the prime minister. Finally, the president is given the duty to select the Prime Minister (White, 1994). The prime minister is expected to advocate for the best ministers. He then leaves the remaining task to the president to select the ministers. The ministers then form the Council of Ministers.

The parliament of India is proposed to have two houses. One of the houses is the lower house. This is also known as house of people or Lok Sabha that has got 552 members. 530 members come from various states in India, while 20 members come from the union territories of India and 2 members are representatives of the English and Indian communities (Almond, 1956).

The president should dismiss the movements in the lower house after five years of operation. Unless the president exercises his power of declaring state of emergency, the lower house may precede the five year term of operation. For instance, the lower house in the years1962-1968 experienced extension due to declaring the state of emergency (Goldstein, 1990).

The election to the lower house is held at large magnitude in the 530 states in India which are completed after the five rounds which may last up to one month.

The second one is the upper house. According to White (1994, p. 23), “The upper house on the contrary is also referred to as the council of state or Rajya Sabha which consists of 250 members”. The 238 members of this house are elected by the state or territorial agencies according to the number of people while the remainder 12 members are elected by the president basing in the knowledge of their specialization in various fields.

The upper house lasts for a term of six years of which the session of the house is continuous. As a result, the upper house in India is not affected by the dissolution from the president (Dickson, 2003).

Both the upper and lower houses perform similar functions i.e. legislative functions therefore they share some of their duties. However, the lower house is the most powerful in the conflicting matters since it is made up of almost double the number of members found in the upper house (Manion, 2000).

In India, there is a system of multiparty where there are several political parties in the lower and the upper house. It is mandatory that a political party is recognized in four states for it to be called a national party. A political party can never be referred to as a national party unless it is acknowledged in four states. State parties are names used to refer to parties that are not acknowledged in either four or more states (Dickson, 2003).

Likewise there are state parties and national parties in the India political system. However it can be noted that the Indian National Congress has been dominating the Indian politics since its inception in 1885. It was formed majorly with an aim of fighting for freedom but afterwards it engaged in politics of India and its leadership has rotated within the Gandhi family. For instance some of its leader include; Jawaharlal Nehru Gandhi, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi etc.

Other major political party that is found in India is Baratiya Janata Party, abbreviated as BJP. This party was formed in the year 1980 with an aim of catering for the needs of social and religious values for the Indian people. India is a country that has a considerable number of minor political parties.

Amongst them is the Nationalist Congress Party as well as the Bahujan Samaj Party (Wang, 2003). State parties in India operate in restricted regions and some of them include; Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Goa, Aryana, Punjab etc.

The judicial system of India consists of the Supreme Court as the highest organ in the provision of justice to the people of India. The chief justice is selected by the president. The president does this basing on the guidance from the prime minister. In White (1994, p. 24), it is quoted that “Civil cases are dealt with in both high courts and magistrate courts”. Such cases are chaired by the judges.

China has a complex political system however it practices communism. China is a socialist republic where the working people act as the leaders of the country. Therefore the power of deciding the future of this country lies in the hands of the citizens rather than leaders of the government or political party leaders. Therefore the national people congress (NPC) and the local people congress (LPC) are the organizations that represent the people in their duty of exercising control of the country.

The National Peoples Congress is the powerful organ in the republic of China and it is made up of deputies from 35 different units (Manion, 2000).

The main work of the national congress is making and amending of the law, determining the budget of the government. This is the supreme organization in PRC therefore it has powers to appoint or demote senior officials. The terms of office of the national people congress is five years and for every year there is a convention where the members of the congress gather to discuss ideas.

For instance it is the work of the national people congress to nominate and elect senior officials such as the president and the chairman of the committee of the NPC. Also the prime minister and various ministers are appointed by the national people’s congress and they can be removed from these positions by the same organ through legal procedures.

The national people congress is therefore a major unit in the administration of the country since it not only provides the people with an opportunity to exercise power over the destiny of their country but also assists the state agencies to intermingle and share the work. This helps in developing the spirit of socialism of which the people republic of China relies on this policy.

The selected president and vice president in China are expected to be in leadership for a period of five years. These individuals are appointed by the national people congress.

It is worthy to note that china is also a democratic republic where there is exercising of multiparty (White, 1994). The Communist Party of China (CPC) is the leading party therefore it is dominant in decision making in the National Peoples Congress. This is because after the decisions are passed in the people’s congress, the decision is subject to scrutiny by the CPC. This makes the peoples republic of china to sound like a one party state however there is existence of other political parties.

In Dickson (2003 p.32), “there are other eight political parties and some of them include; China Association for Promoting Democracy, China Democratic League, China Democratic National Construction Association, Taiwan Democratic Self Government League, Jiusan Society, Chinese Peasant and Workers Democratic Party”.

However these political parties work hand in hand with the communist party of China since the CPC is the dominant party i.e. the ruling party (Wang, 2003). This means that there is interaction and consultation between the ruling party and the other eight political parties. Therefore the CPC is supported by other parties in ruling the people republic of china.

Consequently, there is no opposing party in the debate of national issues since there is cooperation between the CPC and the other eight political parties (White, 1994).

In India, political socialization occurs when the president interact with the prime minister in appointment of senior officials. For instance, a proposal must be made from the prime minister before the president is guaranteed the freedom to choose the ministers. The same applies to the prime minister who is selected after approvals from groups of individuals from the lower house. From this, it is derived that the president has to cooperate with the prime minister while performing his activities.

Another instance where political socialization occurs in India is the working between the lower house and the upper house. Both houses are involved in legislative duties however the lower house has supreme powers over the upper house therefore the former handles sensitive bills such as money bills. In special circumstances, there is joint session between the two houses.

The two houses are therefore the socialization agents in India. This is because in the lower house, members are elected directly from the 530 states of India. The members have a duty of representing each person that is found in the constituency. In the upper house, the members are elected indirectly by the president or other legislative units. As a result of this, most of the interests of the common man are catered for since there is a representative in the parliament.

On the other hand, political socialization in China is witnessed through the cooperation and consultations between the ruling party CPC and other parties (Goldstein, 1990).

The minor parties participate in the discussions concerning the state affairs and policy implementation while the ruling party takes into consideration the ideas. Therefore there is sharing of ideas where the parties are dependent on each other. The final decision that is made by the ruling party is reached upon consultation with the other eight political parties.

Therefore the agent of socialization in the china political system is the political parties that provide democracy to the people of china. Through the ruling party CPC, the people are able to express their opinions

Articulation and aggregation of interests of the people in republic of India is through political parties. India has a system of multiparty where the parties fight for the interests of the common man. This is done by means of articulation where the needs of the citizens are expressed in a simple way so that they can be understood clearly by the political system. For instance, communist party of India fights for the recognition of the rights of the Marxist group found in republic of India.

Aggregation of interests of the people is achieved through analyzing various opinions from the people and then identifying the common ideas among them (Almond, Powell, Dalton & Strom, 2008). The parties then represent these common ideas in the parliament so that the interests of the citizens are fulfilled. For instance, the Baratiya Janata Party which recognizes the social and religious rights for the Indian people.

On the opposite, the articulation and aggregation of interest of the people of republic of china is achieved through the dominant party CPC. The communist party is a unitary party of china since it is ruling with assistance from other parties. The ideas from other parties and individuals are welcomed by this party hence the interests of the people are adequately represented.

In India, public policy is crafted by the parliament that involves both the lower and upper house (Almond, 1956). However the lower house has supreme legislative power as compared to the upper house. This system of parliament is known as bicameral where the two houses share the responsibility of making and amending the laws. The formed laws then become public policies of which the people of this nation are compelled to follow.

Things are different with China since the public policies are designed by the National People Conference. The National People Conference also enacts laws concerning the civil cases, crime and other important laws.

In conclusion, India is likely to become less democratic since the power of making the laws lies on the hands of the two parliaments. The individuals are represented by the members of the parliament which present a risk of inadequate representation. Also the president of the republic of India is elected indirectly by the members of the legislative unit which denies the citizen their democratic right of voting for their favorite president.

However if economic prosperity is to occur in India, the political culture is likely to change from the normal. This is because the political system in India denies the citizens a chance to elect the president and the vice president. As a result of this, people might not be represented adequately in the parliament. Furthermore, people are likely to be independent hence the political parties will decrease in number hence their will be no opposition to the government.

As a result, India is entitled to change in the interest aggregation and the creation of the public policy. Since the political system is subject to become less democratic, appropriate measures will be taken to create the public policies and also cater for the interest’s aggregation.

Contrary, China is likely to be more democratic since the people are directly involved in the state affairs through the national peoples congress. The views and suggestion of the people of china are likely to be put into consideration since the supreme organ is the NPC.

Consequently, the political culture in China is likely to remain the same with increase in economic prosperity. This is because the powers are centered to one supreme body hence there is great unity among the state departments and corporations.

The interests’ aggregation and the creation of public policy in China are likely to remain the same. This is because the national people congress involves the people of China directly in the governance of their country.

Reference List

Almond, G.A. (1956). Comparative Political Systems. The Journal of Politics, 18, 391- 402.

Almond, G.A., Powell, B., Dalton, R., & Strom, K. (2008). Comparative politics today. 9th ed. London: Pearson Longman publisher.

Dickson, B.K. (2003). The Supremacy of the Communist Party of China. Journal of Democracy, 14(1).

Goldstein, A. (1990).Explaining politics in the Peoples Republic of China: The structural alternative. Comparative Politics, 22(3), 301-322.

Manion, M. (2000). Chinese Democratization in Perspective: Electorates and Selectorates at the State Level. The Chinese Quarterly, 163, 700-721.

White, G. (1994). Democratization and Economic Reform in China. The Australian Journal of Chinese Affairs, 31, 72-97.

Wang, J.C.F. (2003). Contemporary Chinese Politics-An introduction. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

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