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  • Rakesh Prasad
  • 1032
  • Parliament House
  • Feb. 2, 2017, 12:39 a.m.
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Rajniti Vs Rajyaniti - have we made a historic mistake in translation

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Read in Englishहिंदी में पढ़ें
Was talking to a politician on things done and said at elections. All those massive budget rallies, big promises, lower and lower standards of debates, twisting truths to make jingles, making irrelevant zingers, personal attacks. He being a known one got candid, what he said next left us looking at the basics of our democracy.

He said we are in the profession of राजनीति  so our actions are defined by the quest to राज  i.e. how to rule and get power. Of course there is an ideology but the word defines how to get there or vice versa.

And actually if you look closer all our political discourse is around this same word and current semantics of politics is twisted to accommodate this word.

Our news channels report elections wins around the success of this word and aim राजनीति. And legitimize election wins as prominent criteria for legitimacy and celebration. This word is engraved deeply in our psyche that puts a huge amount of pride in an election won or lost.

Now, where did this word come from? We started looking at all the social science and political dictionaries from Western democracies here is the closest words.

Politics = The activities associated with the governance of a country or other area, especially the debate or conflict among individuals or parties having or hoping to achieve power (Oxford Dictionary)

The word not just emphasizes on gaining power or ruling, but also resolving conflicts and governance, which many contemporary thinkers in west keep on expanding to give more prominence on 

"How to Achieve Good Governance by using Politics as a tool to resolve conflict". 

There is nowhere anyone naming the word to as "How to rule". Based on western definition and implementation it looks like a mix of 

कूटनीति + something to do with common good of people.

So are we stuck with the an incorrect translation of word "Politics"?  And can it be one of the prominent reasons people in politics behave as they do right now?

Will the behavior and semantics change if we remove this word and start using  राज्यनीति instead?
Would this remove importance of an election win and put focus on actual work done on the ground for the citizens by any politician?

Would this force political players to think what's best for a state,  rather than how to best 'rule' the state?

At BallotBoxIndia we believe the word राज्यनीति  has such an impact. So as a part of our larger Action Group Political Meritocracy we are starting this action Group. The plan is.

1. Create awareness about the word राज्यनीति.

2. Decommission the word राजनीति in favor of a more holistic word राज्यनीति.

So if you see anybody using the word राजनीति  correct him and ask to use राज्यनीति.

Thanks
BallotBoxIndia Team.

This is a part of our larger political meritocracy campaign - Political Meritocracy in India - Isn't it the right time

Image Courtesy - Parthan 
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