The book exposes the organic defects of formal democracy and demonstrates its weakness in satisfying the aspirations of the demos for participation and equality. Effort is made to take the discussion of democratic theory to a higher level where theory and history mingle to provide a better vantage point from which to view the phenomenon of democracy. Also, the theoretical perspective projected in Democracy in India: Form and Substance presents a critical account of the functioning of democratic institutions in India and shows its vulnerable aspects.
The approach adopted in Democracy in India: Form and Substance differs sharply from other studies. Most of these treat formal, representative democracy as the last chapter in the evolution of the democratic idea since its appearance in Greece. It is considered, without questioning, as a universally valid model of democracy. Also, it is supposed to solve, finally and satisfactorily, the paradox of freedom versus liberty. But formal democracy is the symbol of the defeat of democracy by democratic ideology. This ideology celebrates only the external form of democracy drowning its substance in the din of vacuous academic discussion by pundits and soothsayers of democracy praising to the skies the characteristics and the merit of formal democracy.
The book is penetrating and incisive in its analysis, lucid in presentation and broad in its intellectual sweep.
Prof. Ramashray Roy is an eminent political philosopher who has, through his numerous writings, opened new vistas not only in different areas of social sciences but also in Vedic studies. Prof. Roy worked as a Senior Fellow as well as Director of the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi, Director of the Indian Council of Social Science Research, New Delhi as well as its National Fellow and Fellow of the Indian Institute of Advance Study, Shimla.
He has published more than two dozen books and over fifty articles in Journals in India and outside. His publications include Dalit, Development and Democracy; Politics and Society; Politics and Beyond; Sanskaras in India Tradition and Culture (SHIPRA).
The Making of Democracy,
The Advent of Democracy in India,
The Seamless Web,
Fostering Social Revolution,
Social Revolution, Funda-mental Rights and the Judiciary,
Parties and Politics in India,
Paradox of Democracy,