Social control is necessary for the following reasons:
Social solidarity is essential for the existence of society. No two persons are alike in their nature, ideas, altitudes and interests. Every individual is a separate personality. There are cultural differences among the individuals. Some worship an idol, others do not. Some eat meat, others are vegetarians. Some are orthodox, others are modern. Some are fashionable, others are simple. Some are protestants others are Catholic.
As a matter of fact, society is a heterogeneous organisation. If every individual is allowed unrestricted freedom to act and behave, it may create social disorder. For an orderly social life social control is necessary. The aims of social control are to bring out conformity, solidarity and continuity of a particular group or society.
(i) To Maintain the Old Order:
It is necessary for every society or group to maintain its social order and this is possible only when its members behave in accordance with that social order. An important objective of social control is to maintain the old order. Family helps in the realization of this objective. The aged member1– of the family enforce their ideas over the children.
Marriages are settled by the elder members of the family. In religious and other matters also the old parents of the family influence the behaviour of its members. Although enforcement of the old order in a changing society may hinder social progress, yet it is necessary to maintain continuity and uniformity in society.
(ii) To Establish Social Unity:
Without social control social unity would be a mere dream. Social control regulates behaviour in accordance with established norms which brings uniformity of behaviour and leads to unity among the individuals. The family maintains its unity because its members behave in a similar manner in accordance with family norms.
(iii) To Regulate or Control Individual Behaviour:
No two men are alike in their attitudes, ideas, interests and habits. Even the children of the same parents do not have the same attitudes, habits and interests. Men believe in different religions, dress differently, eat different food, marry in different ways and have different ideologies.
There are so much differences in the ways of living of the people that at every moment there is the possibility of clash between them. In modern times this possibility has all the more increased because man has become too self-centered. Social control is necessary to protect social interests and satisfy common needs. If social control is removed and every individual is left to behave freely society would be reduced to a state of jungle.
(iv) To Provide Social Sanction:
Social control provides social sanction to the social ways of behaviour. There are numerous folkways, modes and customs prevalent in society. Every individual has to follow them. If an individual violates the social norms, he is compelled through social control to observe them. Thus social control provides sanction to social norms.
(v) To Check Cultural Mal-adjustment:
Society is subject to change. New inventions, new discoveries and new philosophies continue to take birth in society. The individual has to adjust his behaviour to the changes taking place in society. But all the individuals cannot adjust themselves to the new conditions. Some become progressive, others remain conservative.
When a person from the village moves into the city he comes across new cultural standards and it is possible that he may wrongly adjust himself to the new cultural environment. He may become a slave of passions, visit bar and pass nights in night clubs. During this transitional period in his life social control is very necessary lest he may become a deviant. In our country there is a greater need for social control today.
The main cause of indiscipline among the students and chaos in society is wrong cultural adjustment. It has become a fashion to violate social norms. Their violation is sought to be justified in the name of progress and reform. There is lack of social control. The children do not obey their parents.
The students are not under the influence of their teachers, the people openly violate the laws of the state. Nobody in the country seems to bother about the decreasing social control. India is passing through a transitional period. During this period there is needed more social control than less of it. If the agencies of social control do not act effectively, the Indian society may suffer serious disintegration.
The above reasons clearly prove the need for social control. The need is greater in modern society because of its highly complex character and disintegrating forces present in it.