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Pressure Groups
The term ‘pressure group’ originated in the USA. A pressure group is a group of people who are organised actively for promoting and defending their common interest. It is so-called because it attempts to change public policy by exerting pressure on the government.
The pressure groups are also called ‘interest groups’ or vested groups. They are different from the political parties because they neither contest elections nor try to capture political power.
Pressure Groups in India
A large number of pressure groups exist in India. But, they are not evolved to the same extent as in the USA or the Western countries.
The pressure groups in India can be broadly classified into the following categories:
1. Business groups
2. Trade unions
3. Agrarian groups
4. Professional associations
5. Student organisations
6. Religious organisations
7. Tribal organisations
8. Linguistic groups
9. Ideology-based groups
10. Environmental protection groups
Functions of Pressure Groups in India
Pressure groups are the interest groups that work to secure specific interest by influencing the public policy. They are non-aligned with any political party and work as an indirect yet powerful group to influence the policy decisions.
Pressure groups carry out a range of functions including representation, political participation, education, policy formulation and policy implementation.
Examples for Pressure Groups
1. Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI)
2. All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC)
3. All India Kisan Sabha
4. Indian Medical Association (IMA)
5. All India Students Federation (AISF)
6. All India Sikh Students Federation
7. Young Badaga Association
8. Tamil Sangam
9. Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam
10. Narmada Bachao Andolan

Political Participation
Pressure groups can be called the informal face of politics. They exert influence precisely by mobilising popular support through activities such as petitions, marches, demonstrations and other forms of political protest. Such forms of political participation have been particularly attractive to young people.
Many pressure groups devote significant resources by carrying out research, maintaining websites, commenting on government policy and using high-profile academics, scientists and even celebrities to get their views across, with an emphasis to cultivate expert authority.
Though the pressure groups themselves are not policy-makers, yet it does not prevent many of them from participating in the policy-making process. Many pressure groups are vital sources of information and render advice to the government, and therefore they are regularly consulted in the process of policy formulation.

However, we must keep in mind that there is no better form of government than Democratic government. To create a better society and nation, the people of India along with the union and state governments
should come together to fight against the miseries of human life.