An Essay On Public Opinion

890 words - 4 pages

In a democratic country public opinion is of the highest importance. Democracy has been defined as the government of the people, by the people and for the people. Hence the views of the people on various issues play a crucial role in determining the nature of government. The people express their views through the ballot box. They elect their representatives which form the government and they continue to be their leaders and rulers so long as they enjoy their confidence, and public opinion as expressed through the press, the radio and the television, favors and supports them.

The people get the kind of government they desire. If public opinion is enlightened and well-informed regarding the ...view middle of the document...

They should have a correct understanding of the problems that face the country and cast their votes a=on the basis of merit and be not swayed by considerations of caste and religion. However, this is rarely the case.

The people can be easily misguides, emotionally excited and their views distorted, Carried away by their passions, they often indulge in hooliganism and destructive activities. Clever politicians and orators can easily exploit them to gain their own ends. This is more so that case in a country likes India, where the masses are by and large illiterate and ignorant. They indulge in agitations on flimsy grounds. Usually, such agitations are entirely uncalled for, and cause considerable harm to the nation. This ignorance and fickleness of the people is the greatest danger that faces democracy in India today.

As a matter of fact, formation of correct and reliable public opinion is essential for the success of democracy. In this respect the press and other media of public communication can pay a significant role. Indeed, press is the most important means for the formation of public opinion. By reporting current events and interpreting them to the readers, it helps them to taken an intelligent part in the affairs of the country. It teaches the public to make such demands upon the Government as are of common interest. It also tells them to press the Government to postpone some action which is likely to go against the public interest. So, really speaking, press is a very vital agency of education in a democracy.

However, if the press functions in an irresponsible manner, it may do much harm also. If it...

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