Posted in My World View, Random thots..

The Great Indian Voter

india logo

The verdict is out, and  celebrations are in!

The India Election has surprised everyone with the hugely intelligent and level-headed output that the millions of voters have given. It has reaffirmed our faith in the Indian parliamentary and Democratic form of government which had taken a beating over the last few decades. It has also dispelled all doubts and banished the depressing possibility of a hung Parliament. We will now have a strong and decisive government when we need it most – in the middle of an economic meltdown and a stormy neighbourhood.

Just few weeks ago, scores of scribes and intellectuals were lamenting the possibility of a fractured mandate and impotent government in the middle of an economic crisis. There was the shocking possibility of a dogmatic Left calling the shots, and fears of a government led by the Left which is any industry’s nightmare come true. In the middle of all this was an arrogant and cocksure BJP which refused to budge from its communal overtures, promising the Ram Temple at every opportune moment and supporting a malignant Varun Gandhi for his hate inducing rants. And of course – a bevy of regional parties eyeing a shot at national power, after extracting their pond of flesh. The scene at ground zero was pessimistic at best and catastrophic at worst.

Political discussions and vote bank analysis essentially proved that the mandate would be caste or religion based. The assumption was that the affiliations of most Indians could be flipped and turned around by whipping up rhetoric – pitching the X community against Y, and capitalizing of the peoples’ insecurities. This let to a retrospection – are we a defunct democracy, bitterly divided by narrow domestic walls?.

The verdict yesterday dispelled all doubts. It proved that here is logic behind the thinking of a million minds, and a method behind the madness. The Indian voter can think with a national purpose, and rise above narrow differences. The Indian voter can recognize false promises and blatant rhetoric, rewarding sincere purpose and good governance. It has also proved that the electorate understands the enormity of tasks which lie ahead, and is in no mood for experimentation. It has rejected all communalists, dogmatics, double-crossers, megalomaniacs and foul mouthed dragons, voting for continuity and smooth transition.

I know this post sounds too pro-Congress, but let me tell you – I am no big fan of the Indian National Congress . The Congress party has lots of flaws, and most of its critics are not wrong when they say that it is dynastic. That “Who Rajiv Gandhi fell in love with?” should determine the destiny of an entire nation is not very commendable – it’s anyone’s guess. However, the fact that the Congress party’s Gandhi heirs rose to the occasion is commendable. They have shown a sense of commitment and gracefulness in politics which dynasties aren’t much known for, and which hasn’t been shown by the other Gandhis in the BJP!. The basic ideology of development and secularism which Congress unwaveringly stands for is what bodes well for the country, and gives hope that we will be able to tide over and rise high in these difficult times.

The mandate is out and with a highly educated Prime minister at the helm, it is a time for the Government to pull up its’ sleeves and get down to work. It has a long way to go and should begin with the cognizance – power corrupts and victory has many friends .It has finally got a chance to work unfettered without nosy allies and interfering Toms, and should make the best use of it.

Plaudits to the Indian voter for this sage verdict. Take a bow!

Posted in My World View

The Great Indian Election

ballot box

The Great Indian Election is here..

In this frenzied extravaganza which promises a lot of drama while it lasts, commitments are made, countless castles constructed in the air, and political marriages and breakups are the order of the day. It is interesting to observe the politicians battling to out-do and out-shout one another, and for once sweating it out under the sun. It is quite a spectacle to watch – their infinite talent in using vile and abusive insults, and the deft transformations from fire breathing dragons to paragons of virtue within minutes!! It is one time when we get to see our Ministers weather all odds, difficulties, threats and potential shoe-snipers to get their message across to the electorate. The mass media is in a tizzy, and every movement in the election battle is fervently analysed and furiously debated. Caste equations are laid out, and bar graphs are drawn.. Exit polls run everywhere, and there is an all important question in limelight – What does the Indian voter want?

All the attention and importance zooms on to the poor and unprivileged millions, who can now, for a brief moment, bask in their position of power. Millions are spent in campaigns to woo the voters who will decide India’s destiny for the next five years. It is the moment of reckoning for a government which will be formed – “By the People, Of the People and For the People”. It is a time of transition and uncertainty, when the fortune of the country is in charted by a “billion nameless votes” and politics is a hot topic of deliberation everywhere.

Mostly, I have noticed that whenever we have a discussion about the elections and the future of the country, almost all debates end on a pessimistic note. There is a general perception that the ones voted to the echelons of power will inevitably be corrupt and morally defunct. In a sense, sincere and committed individuals will never be able to win elections. Surely, the democratic process in India has a lot of flaws, and that’s the reason why we might never really choose the best candidates for the top posts. Yet, I wonder if such cynicism will really do us any good? I found this quote in today’s newspaper, echoing the same sentiments –
“We have a habit of complaining. It’s my habit too… But we avoid taking the initiative for a better future” – PRIYANKA GANDHI

Indeed, the Indian election is the most massive democratic exercise in the world, and the right to equality and franchise is a privilege which Indians dreamt of only seventy years ago!. Also, it’s not an understatement when I say that thousands of Indians laid down their lives for precisely this moment – to be able to choose the future of their country. The power to determine your own destiny is a very coveted prize, and we are lucky to have the fortune to use it… At least, the best we can do is be proactive and think positive.