Democracy is a method of governance in which the people themselves elect the ruler. In other words, it is the inverse of the dictatorial system. On the one hand, where the voice of the public does not matter in the dictatorial system, the public is paramount in democracy.
Types of Democracy Based on the Number of Political Parties
A healthy democracy must have at least two political parties. A democracy with only one political party often turns into an autocratic system. Some democratic countries of the world have two political parties and some more than two political parties. On this basis number of political parties, there are three types of democracy systems as following:
1. One-Party Democracy
In a system where the same political party has control over the policies of governance and the same political party is influential in determining the policy of the government, then the system is called a party system. According to Curtis, “the one-party method is characterized by the fact that the ruling party either dominates all other factions or in a very extreme situation suppresses all opposing factions that are deemed to be subversive parties to the regime because they have powers that divide the national will.” In India till 1967, a party democratic system was in operation. After independence, the central government, despite the other parties, remained the Congress party till 1967.
Merits of One Party Democracy
In a party democracy, government work takes less time and less time. All tasks are completed successfully. In a party system, the fear of factionalism in the public is eradicated and national unity is maintained. National unity also persists.
Demerits of One Party Democracy
But in a party system, there is a fear of increasing the authoritarianism of a party and in a party system, the members of the party have devotion towards the party and ignore the national interest. China, North Korea, Cuba, Vietnam, etc. are prime examples of party democracy.
2. Two-Party Democracy
The two-Party political system is prevalent in countries like America and Britain at this time. In these countries, only two political parties are strong contenders to get a majority and form a government. Apart from these two parties, other parties have no significant role in the political system. In this, one party gets permission to form a government with an absolute majority, which is called the ruling party, and the other political party which does not get an absolute majority is called the opposition. The United States and Britain are the best examples of Two-Party democracy. In the United States, the Republican Party and the Democratic Party struggle for power, while in Britain, the government forms the majority of the Labor Party and the Conservative Party. According to Ellen Bal, the Two-Party system can be divided into two parts on the basis of ideology:
a) Unclear Two-Party System
In this, there is not much emphasis on party ideologies, but the party’s ideology and programs change in order to win elections. The United States and Ireland are prime examples of this.
b) Clear Two-Party system
In this system, there is a fight of clear ideologies in both political parties, that is, parties are formed on the basis of ideologies. Under this, the collision of ideology in the electoral battle makes politics somewhat easier. Britain, West Germany, and Australia can be said to be good examples of this.
Merits of Two-Party Democracy
In a Two-Party democratic system, people have limited opportunities to form a favorite government. They have to choose either of the two political parties. In this, the Legislature remains a toy in the hands of the Cabinet, because the drunk cabinet of the majority can put every undue and appropriate pressure on the Legislature.
Demerits of Two-Party Democracy
The biggest advantage of this system is that in this country the country gets a stable and democratic government because by having only two political parties in it, one party gets a clear majority to form a government. Due to it being a permanent government, long-term plans can be implemented and the policy can also be kept effective.
3. Multiparty Democracy
Multiparty democracy is very popular in all types of democracy. When more than two political parties are vying for power and any one party has a fair chance to come to power on the basis of the majority on its own or in alliance with others, it is called multi-party democracy. When many parties join hands to fight elections and come to power in a multi-party system, it is called an alliance or a front. There are many political parties in India, Japan, Switzerland, and France. These countries have a multi-party system.
Merits of Multiparty Democracy
The biggest advantage of a multi-party system is that it also provides political representation to various interests and ideologies and people have many options to form their favorite government. In addition, the dictatorship of the Cabinet is not established in it, because at times the government is formed by joining several parties, which have a mixed majority in Parliament. In this, the Legislature does not become a toy in the hands of the Cabinet, because in this the Cabinet has to depend on the majority of the Legislature itself rather than relying on the majority of one party in the Legislature.
Demerits of Multiparty Democracy
Often, the multi-party system seems to be very cohesive and leads the country towards political instability because sometimes opposite-minded parties form governments under opportunistic coalitions, but soon their interests clash and the government collapses. is. In this, the government is weak and temporary due to being made up of many parties, which can break at any time. Therefore, the government cannot implement long-term plans, nor can it formulate strong policies and implement them. Lack of accountability is found due to it being a joint government.