Democracy vs Republic – Difference between Democracy and Republic

Democracy vs Republic – Are you thinking these terms as synonymous? You are not right, if you are. What is the difference between Democracy and Republic?


Democracy is a form of government where the supreme authority is people. Unlike hereditary kingship, people elects their representatives in democracy. This system is based on the majority; the government will be an elected one, favored by majority of the people. The head of the government is elected by direct or indirect elections. The head of the government is Prime Minister in most democratic countries like India.

Though democracy is the widely accepted form of governance now, since the majority rules the country, there is every chance that the minority interests are neglected; and that is the biggest drawback of democracy. In countries where rule of law exists, the Constitution normally will have provisions for protection of minority rights.


The republic form of government is the type of government when there is a constitution to rule the country and there will be a constitutional head. The constitutional head is the head of state and in India the constitutional head is the President. If a monarch rules the state, that state is normally not called a republic. Countries like the United States of America, India etc are founded as a Republic under the Constitution.

Republic form of government gives more importance to individual rights, and ensure that individual rights are not neglected for majority interest.

India is a democratic republic.

Updated: July, 2013

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