Important Political Terms of Terminology

Absolutism: A system of Government in which all powers are concentrated in the hands of a single person.

Adjournment: Finishing the current meeting of a legislature or any other public body till another fixed time usually the next day.

Adult Franchise: Right of voting for all adult irrespective of education, sex, creed, caste etc.

Politics; Silly Season. :

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Ambassador: The political representatives of one country in another.

Aristocracy: A form of government in which the supreme power rests in the hands of a few good people.

Armistice: A short suspension of war.

Attache: A junior member of an ambassadorial office.


Autocracy: A government with unlimited political authority so that individuals enjoy no freedom.

Backbencher: An unimportant Member of Parliament.

Ballot: It means secret voting. This method is used in elections to ensure that candidates could not know in whose favour a particular voter has cast his vote.

Blue Books: Government publications.


Buffer State: A neutral State between two great States.

Budget: Annual financial statement of revenues and expenditure.

By-Election: Election to a seat fell vacant before the completion of the full term of a legislature.

Cabinet: A committee of ministers.

Coalition: Combination of two or more political parties.

Communist Party: A party working on the principles of Karl Marx stated in his book ‘Das Capital’.

Constitution: Supreme Law of a country.

Constitutional: The fundamental “Laws of State”.

Coup detach: A sudden change of government by force.

Cross Voting: When the members of the ruling party and opposition parties break their party barriers and cast their votes on either side without regard to party affiliations, it is said cross voting. 5 I

Democracy: A government of people, for the people and by the people-

Dictatorship: One man rule with no controlling factor to call him to account (for example, Stalin, Hitler); one man invested with absolute authority.

Displaced Persons: Refugees.

Dollar Diplomacy: The foreign policy of America to win friends through financial aid.

Election: The process of choosing a representative of the people. Embargo: A temporary order to stop the arrival and departure of ships of imports and exports.

Embassy: The office or the duties of an ambassador. Fascism: It is a political system in which the State represented by one man is supreme and the individual has no rights other than what the fascist dictator may permit. Mussolini in Italy developed this creed.

Federalism : When several autonomous States join together and surrender some of their important powers (defence and foreign affairs etc.) to a central authority for common good, people it is known as federal polity, like U.S.A

Fifth Column: It applies to those who work secretly against the interests of their own country.

Floor-Crossing: Means changing from one party to another in the legislature.

Four Freedoms: Freedom of speech; freedom of worship; freedom from want, freedom from fear, propagated first by US President Roosevelt.

Fourth Estate: The press is known as fourth estate. The other three are the King, the Church and the Parliament.

Fundamental Rights: Most basic rights of an individual. Gentlemen’s Agreement: An informal agreement between States. Hansard: The official report of parliamentary proceedings. Hierarchy: A form of government by the family members. Joint Responsibility: The principle of responsibility of all the members of a cabinet for every act done by one of them individually. Labour Party: A party of workers of federation of labour union. Laisez faire: The policy of non-interference in economic affairs. Lobbying: Influencing other legislators by persuasion and pressure for their support in important legislative matters.

Lokpal: An official appointed by the President to investigate public complaints against ministers and high officials.

Manifesto: Declaration of future programme and policy by political Party on the eve of a General Election.

Marxism: The socialist doctrine following the Theory of Karl Marx. Monroe Doctrine: The principle of sell-determination for all nations. Midterm Poll: The election held between the two regular general elections due to dissolution of a legislature before the expiry of its normal term.

Naturalization: Awarding of citizenship to a foreigner. Open-door Policy: Admission into country of all nationals. Ordinance: Ordinance is an Act promulgated by the Head of the State °n his own authority by-passing to procedure of legislation.

Pacifism: The doctrine of ending war for all purposes whatsoever

Panch Sheel: The five principles enunciated by Pt. Nehru and Chou- en-Lai in 1954 as the basis for international co-operation. They are

(a) Mutual respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty

(b) Non-interference in each other’s internal affairs.

(c) Non-aggression.

(d) Equality and mutual benefit.

(e) Peaceful co-existence.

Persona-non-grata: A diplomatic envoy not acceptable to the host country.

Plutocracy: It denotes the Governments by the wealthy people.

Politbureau: The political bureau of the Communist Party in Russia It is the High Command of the Party.

Preamble: It is the introductory part especially of the constitution. It explains the aims and sometimes the ways to achieve them.

Quorum: The minimum number of members essential for transacting business in a society of Parliament.

Referendum: Submitting a matter directly to the vote of the people.

Republic: A sovereign country whose head of the State is not a monarch or king and the supreme authority is vested in the elected representatives of the people.

Secularism: Equal respect for all the religions. No discrimination on the basis of religion.

Secular State: State which treats alike all communities inhabiting its territory and in which all citizens have equal rights without distinction of caste, creed, sex and race like India

Trusteeship: The mandate system of the League of Nations.

Unicameral: A legislature having only one house.

Vote: Expression of a choice of opinion.

Veto: Veto is a right of every member of a body or committee to reject the decision of the whole committee or body. Five big powers enjoy veto power in the Security Council of U.N.O.

Whip: A party official in a Parliament.

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