Turbulent Democracies

Routledge Handbook of Asian Parliaments, 2023

28 Pages Posted: 1 Sep 2023

Date Written: April 14, 2023


This Chapter covers four South Asian countries - Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka - that we term 'turbulent democracies'. While each has endured periods of emergency rule, martial law, or civil war, they all have elected civilian governments today. But this similarity in form belies the precarity of democratic rule in the region as well as the democratic erosion or backsliding that has occurred in the region in recent years. Indeed, over the past decade, South Asia has experienced severe turbulence wherein executive power has become increasingly unmoored from both institutional and political constraints. One effect of this development is that parliaments in the regions have been marginalized and institutionally weakened. When exercising their functions, these parliaments do not function effectively as deliberative or law-making bodies.

Keywords: South Asia, Asian Parliaments, Constitutionalism in Asia, Comparative Constitutional Law

Suggested Citation

Abeyratne, Rehan, Turbulent Democracies (April 14, 2023). Routledge Handbook of Asian Parliaments, 2023, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4558298

Rehan Abeyratne (Contact Author)

Western Sydney University ( email )

Locked Bag 1797
Penrith, NSW 2751

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