maternal mortality

maternal mortality

JLF-14 : Citizen Elites: Dominance of the Priviliged (D1_CB_20)

22h ago
SOURCE  

Description

Dipankar Gupta, Manvendra Singh, Lily Wangchhuk, in conversation with Mukulika Banerjee This session, the first in the Democracy Dialogues series at ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival 2014, discussed what drives the democratic aspirations of a nation as large and diverse as India, and what role could the elites play in this process. The term citizen elites, was unpacked by Mukulika Banerjee as a reference to a category of people who are ready to forsake their own interests for the larger good. Dipankar Gupta emphasized the importance of a fraternity for democracy to thrive, and observed that "true democracy is a hammer to shape reality, not a mirror to reflect it." He claimed that citizen elites "excavate democracy, and are the people who go against the tide, citing Mahatma Gandhi as a prime example. Lily Wangchuck expressed her enthusiasm for elections and said that for Bhutan, democracy had been a very new experience. She believed that citizen elites had the potential to make a huge difference in her countrty, explaining that in Bhutan, democracy was still a top down initiative, whereby the king was passing power down to the people, but the people in Bhutan were not yet comfortable with the concept of change. Manvendra Singh emphasized the importance of a universal health and education system for the growth of any country. He explained that the infant and maternal mortality rate in India was very high, arguing that although there was plenty of money in the country, "the real need was to build a grand vision. " Gupta concluded that there was a citizen elite hiding in each of us, we just need to realize this. When questioned about the ideals of the Aam Aadmi party and it's connection to the idea of citizen elites, he said "I think that Aam Aadmi Party is still evolving. They are in transition to become a fully- fledged political party and I hope they will be able to embrace the idean of citizen elites."