Does the Nature of state play a key role in pandemic ?

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Today when the entire world is facing pandemic there has been a lot of deliberation on utilization of resources in times of pandemic and various factors which involve in controlling the spread of a pandemic. Have you all ever wondered what the most important factor in controlling a pandemic is? Is it just finances? Or is it just resources? Or is it the number of doctors? Yes these are essential factors involved in handling the pandemic but one factor which is the most important factor in handling of a pandemic is the nature of state . Nature of State plays a pivotal role in handling of a pandemic. Before we go ahead to analyze how form of government and Nature of state matters let us understand the two major Nature of State.

Two major form of state are authoritarian state by nature and second is a democratic state by nature. Both the Nature of state has  distinct features before we go ahead analyzing how it has played a role in handling of pandemic let us understand features of  both the Nature of State.

Authoritarian State -:

Nature of Rule -: it is a state which is ruled by an authoritarian government in nature which is headed by a civil or a military dictator. Scant importance is given to the rights and freedom of the people censorship or control over press and media is maintained directly or even indirectly. [1]

Lack of focus on freedom -: Lack of emphasis on freedom is given to the rights and freedom of the people , censorship or control over press and media is maintained indirectly or even directly. [2]

Situational usage of force -: At times Fear and Force is used to ensure people comply with the policies and decisions of the ruling establishment.[3]

Organs and role -: Executive is the most powerful organ of state power and it dominates the legislature and even judiciary. [4]


– Nature of this form of state is purely representative.

-Liberty – Democratic state purely emphasizes on freedom rights of people. Democratic state does empahasize on significance and importance of freedom and rights.

-Limited Government – Limited Government is one of the prominent features of a democracy. Government does have limited control as compare to an authoritarian state.  It is people on whom a lot of power is vested on in a democratic state.

-Representive Government – In a democracy the head of state and representatives are elected by the people. The representative are elected directly or indirectly by the people.

Let us look at some democratic states and their situation of handling of pandemic. Let us look at an democratic nation like U.S.A. A recent report states that current total of Covid cases in USA are 8,924,548 , the total deaths are  228,100 this was the data updated till 30th October .

Let us take the example of Brazil has so far had more than 5.5 million confirmed cases of the virus and nearly 160,000 deaths, both the countries are democratic state.

At the same time let us have a look at some authoritarian states like Laos and Vietnam they have considerably controlled the pandemic well. Why this difference? This difference is basically because of the nature of state.

In case of democratic countries the features of that countries are such where there is emphasis on freedom and liberty and limited governmental control. On the other hand in case of an authoritarian state there is less importance and emphasis to freedom. In Authoritarian state there is more governmental control. I ll explain with the help of example. If let’s say if a very young child of  2 year old contracts Covid in an authoritarian state  if the governments take the child away from the family the government won’t be questioned . It is merely because of nature of state. The authoritarian state enables more government control. The family can’t question the government because of the nature of state.  This wont be possible in a democratic state . On the other hand democracy has provisions of questioning the government . Democracy also promotes and upholds basic human rights of people. Democracy paves value towards humanitarian aspects.

We need to understand that Democratic state is an ideal state in times of pandemic because it enables transparency accountability. It upholds peoples freedom hence Democracy is the best form of government and Democratic state is ideal for handling of pandemic.

Vignesh Narayanan – Writer Bharat Bhagya Vidhata


  1. KK GHAI, Political Science Pg 9 ( Kalyani Publishers 2019 ).
  2. KK GHAI, Political Science Pg 9 ( Kalyani Publishers 2019 ).
  3. KK GHAI, Political Science Pg 9 ( Kalyani Publishers 2019 ).
  4. KK GHAI, Political Science Pg 9 ( Kalyani Publishers 2019 ).

Categories: Society

Leave a Reply