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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

India Poll Results: Reading between lines


Jiwan Kshetry

So the polls in many states of India have yielded now a result, that was predicted widely and was shown well in the exit polls. Few salient conclusions of the results:

1. The political climate is in favor of regional parties rather than the national parties.
2. People's repulsion to the incumbent government in Delhi that resulted from the exposure of innumerable corruption scams has been clearly shown.
3. With nationwide polls for union government in the horizon, the kind of stability the Congress-led UPA provided to the country seems now unlikely after the polls next year.

There are also some less obvious but more important implications of the results:

1. In corruption-ridden states like Uttar Pradesh crippled by hunger and penury, the option was to choose between evil and less evil. Anti-incumbency factor made the now-winner SP look less evil and it won. This means, UP had no luck like that of Bihar where in the last polls for state, the decades old notoriously corrupt regime of Lalu Prasad Yadav was overthrown by a definitely better option of Nitish Kumar who promised and then delivered too. That phenomenon is now pushed further away in the future with SP, which lost last time just because of incumbency factor, in power.

2. While the decline of the Congress-led secular alliance has benefited the opposition saffron alliance led by BJP in many states, that is more indirect. And the performance of BJP itself, apart from its allies, has been bad even in states like Punjab where the incumbent coalition won; let alone the states of huge significance like UP where BJP even lost two seats won in the previous poll. Saffron coalition is in relatively better position than during the last general elections but that may matter little.

3. Despite the sensational anti-corruption crusade by the so called 'Team Anna', and its visibility in the media and social sites, that mattered little when it came to ballot box. Hard political realities in ground and the infamous exercise of money and muscle power played again the pivotal role and not many politicians won election by being incorruptible, at least in visible scale.

4. Last, but not the least, despite the six and half decades long democratic practice, Indian democracy has ended up recycling the same lot of evil and not evil politicians as in the common metaphor. Potential for any radical change in the political culture is next to nil, at least for now.

विजय कुमारको खुशी पढेपछि

जीवन, खुशी अहंकार

जीवनमा अफ्ठ्यारा घुम्तीहरुमा हिंडिरहँदा मैले कुनै क्षणमा पलायनलाई एउटा विकल्पको रुपमा कल्पना गरेको थिएँ, त्यसलाई यथार्थमा बदल्ने आँट गरिनँ, त्यो बेग्लै कुरा हो त्यसबेला लाग्थ्योः मेरा समग्र दुखहरुको कारण मेरो वरपरको वातावरण हो, यसबाट साहसपूर्वक बाहिरिएँ भने नयाँ दुख आउलान् तर तत्क्षणका दुरुह दुखहरु गायब भएर जानेछन् कति गलत थिएँ !

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