GS Mains Model Question & Answer: Public opinion is
considered to be the essential element for successful working of democratic
communication in the system. Explain. Comment
Q. Public opinion is considered to be the
essential element for successful working of democratic communication in the
system. Explain. Comment
Public opinion is considered to be the essential element for successful
working of democratic communication in the system. Explain.
Ans. Public Opinion is the expression of the views of citizens. No government
can afford to ignore it. A sound and effective public opinion can even shake the
structures of dictators. The strength of democratic system lies in respecting
the mind power of the people. There should be free and fair interaction of
thoughts for solving trie collective problems. Public opinion acquires great
relevance in realising this democratic goal. It promotes wider awareness and
invites citizens to examine issues from different points of view. The
significance and role of public opinion can be explained as follows:
(a) Guide to the Government: Public opinion acts as the guide to the government
in respect of policy formation. Government functions in general on the basis of
mandate received in elections and tries to win over the masses to fulfil the
promises made during elections.
(b) Helping in Law Making: Government is always under pressure of public opinion
and takes note of the same in formulating laws for the common good. Governmental
policies are invariably affected by people’s opinion on various issues. Public
opinion helps the government to enact laws in the given situation.
(c) Acts as a Watchdog : Public opinion acts as a watchdog. It controls and
checks the government from becoming irresponsible. While criticizing the wrong
policies of the government, public opinion always keeps the government alert.
Government is always concious of the fact that people would not vote for it or
bring it back to power again if it goes against the wishes of the people.
(d) Protects the Rights & Liberties : Public opinion acts as the protector of
rights and liberties of citizens. In a democratic country, people have the right
to criticize or support the government in their own way. More effective and
positive use of this right not only encourages or motivates the government but
also keeps the government alive towards the rights and liberties of the people.
(e) Acts as a Powerful Force in International Sphere : Public opinion has
acquired worldwide importance. In fact, international relations are influenced
by public opinion. In the age of globalization, the issues like promotion and
protection of human rights, environment and discrimination based on race,
religion or sex, prevention of child labour, terrorism etc. hold international
community answerable to public opinion. Therefore, the governments remain
conscious of such international public opinion also. Infact, no democratic
government can afford to ignore public opinion.