Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg

SAI - News

The Indian Elections: Panel discussion

19th of May 2009, 17.00 (s.t.), Z10, South Asia Institute

led by Professor Ajay K. Mehra (Delhi), Dr. David Taylor (London) and members of the Department of Political Science, South Asia Institute

The latest parliamentary elections in India - the 'largest' democracy in the world - opens up several important general questions. How does a post-colonial society with deep layers of mass poverty, misery and marginality sustain elections of gigantic proportions, run to a high level of professionalism and fairness? At the same time, why does the electoral democracy nevertheless condone conspicuous and flagrant lapses of liberal democracy, rule of law as well as corruption and crime? The panellists will address specific issues connected to this wider theme.

Ajay K. Mehra
Ajay K. Mehra received his training in political science at the Jawaharlal Nehru University .  He has since worked on Police and Internal Security, Terrorism, Politics of Urbanisation, Political Institutions (Political Parties, Parliament, Police, Panchayati Raj), Federalism, Voluntary Sector and Civil Society and Governannce.  He coordinates activities of the Centre for Public Affairs, a platform for public discourse, along with several public intellectuals. He has authored, co-authored, edited and co-edited a number of books and monographs., contributed to refereed journals and has written extensively in the Indian print media on various issues of public concern.
David Taylor
Educated at the University of Cambridge (BA, History, 1966) and the University of London (MA South Asian Studies, 1967 and PhD Politics, 1972), David Taylor has been Lecturer, and then Senior Lecturer at the Department of Political Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London 1970-2002, Vice-Provost (Academic Development and Special Projects), Aga Khan University, 2002-7. Since 2008 he is a Senior Research Fellow (non-stipendiary), Institute of Commonwealth Studies, University of London. He is the author and editor of a number of books and articles in the field of 20th century South Asian politics.

This event has been organised with funds from the Cluster of Excellence, Asia and Europe in a Global Context, University of Heidelberg.
13 May 2009
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