Focus: GS-II Governance
Why in news?
India has become one of the world’s least free democracies, according to a global survey, which warned that “the Indian government’s alarming departures from democratic norms under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) could blur the values-based distinction between Beijing and New Delhi.”
- The Freedom in the World 2020 report ranks India at the 83rd position, along with Timor-Leste and Senegal.
- This is near the bottom of the pile among the countries categorised as “Free”, with only Tunisia receiving a lower score.
- India’s score fell by four points to 71, the worst decline among the world’s 25 largest democracies this year.
- The annulment of autonomy and the subsequent shutdown of Kashmir, the National Register of Citizens and the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, as well as the crackdown on mass protests have been listed as the main signs of declining freedom in the report.
Freedom in the World Report
- Freedom in the World is a yearly survey and report by the U.S.-based non-governmental organization Freedom House.
- The report derives its methodology from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948.
- It covers 195 countries, awarding scores based on political rights indicators such as the electoral process, political pluralism and participation and government functioning, as well as civil liberties indicators related to freedom of expression and belief associational and organisational rights, the rule of law and personal autonomy and individual rights.