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Report No. 255

Chapter III

Regulation of Political Parties and Inner Party Democracy

3.1. Democratic theory can be thought of to include accounts of both procedural and substantive democracy. Procedural democracy can be said to refer to the practice of universal adult franchise, periodic elections, secret ballot, while substantive democracy can be said to refer to the internal democratic functioning of the parties, which purportedly represent the people. This section deals with the internal democratic functioning of parties, and the question of how parties should function and regulate themselves.

3.2. The NCRWC in its Report on Electoral Processes and Political Parties appropriately recognised that "no electoral reforms can be effective without reforms in the political party system" and it recognised the following areas of immediate concern here:

1. "Structural and organisational reform.- party organisation.- National, State and local level.- inner party democrac.- regular party elections, recruitment of party cadres, socialization, development and training, research, thinking and policy planning activities of the party.

2. Party system and governanc.- Mechanisms to make parties viable instruments of good governance.

3. Institutionalization of political partie.- need for a comprehensive legislation to regulate party activities, criteria for registration as a national or State part.- de-recognition of parties".133

133. NCRWC Report, supra note 13

3.3. Of primary relevance in this chapter, is the first concern regarding the regulation of the practice of political parties in terms of internal elections, recruitment of party cadres, and development and training activities. At the very outset, it is important to note the distinction between the regulation of party practice and party ideology as components of internal and inner party democracy. The section begins with reviewing the history of various committee reports.

Electoral Reforms Back

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