India was born a democracy on August 15, 1947. It is one of the few postcolonial democracies to have remained a democracy down to this day. At 75 years old, India is Asia’s oldest democracy and the world’s largest. More people have voted in India than in the rest of the world combined.
Yet many view India as a troubled democracy. The Economist’s Democracy Index classifies India as a “flawed democracy”. Sweden’s Varieties of Democracy Institute calls India an “electoral autocracy”. Freedom House rates India as only “partially free”. Are these warnings correct, or has the world underrated the success of Indian democracy?
Join us at CIS on Thursday, August 11 for a discussion on the state of Indian democracy at 75 with former Prime Minister Tony Abbott. A long-time India watcher, Abbott played a key role in kicking off the negotiations that led to April’s surprise announcement of the Australia-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement. Tony Abbott was Australia’s prime minister when Narendra Modi first won office in India.
Following opening remarks by Aarti Seksaria, former PM Tony Abbott will join adjunct scholar Salvatore Babones, for a conversation and audience Q&A.
The Honourable Tony Abbott AC was Prime Minister of Australia from 2013-2015 and Member of the Australian Parliament for Warringah from 1994-2019.
Salvatore Babones is an associate professor at the University of Sydney and adjunct scholar at the Centre for Independent Studies. Salvatore writes the “Philistine” column for Quadrant and is the regular host of the weekly CIS livestream show On Liberty.
Aarti Seksaria, is a former internship graduate at CIS. Aarti has worked as a tutor on Indian Foreign & Security Policy at the ANU and was recently recognised as an ‘Indo-Pacific Emerging Leader’ by Latrobe Asia.