In Karnataka I donot see much of election meetings as one sees in Tamilnadu or even in Andhra. May be spoiler is the Election commission of India. A funny rule is that if the candidate just stands with folded hands not on the dais but below the speaking Leader and then cash spent is not counted for his electoral expenses otherwise if he stands next to the leader it will be added to his electoral expenses. What a silly rule? The EC has done so many whimsical rulings which had no logic except to show its power once in 5 years over the bureaucracy.These election expenses are another farce and seasoned parties know how to get over it and also placing their favorite babus well before the code of conduct is invoked. The colour of Indian Democracy by festoons, giant cut outs, caps, masks and ofcourse the Briyani crowd is very badly curtailed by the socalled rules of election commission. It is the election time the ordinary people get their pounds of worth from the elected Reps who splurge the money. But the Indian Election commission has been a spoiler and they just do not know how Indian mind works nor how they are very clever when they vote.
Recently there was this visit by Shri Ananth Kumar who is standing from our area along with BJP MLA Mr. Satish Reddy of this area and also BJP Corp-orator Mrs. Latha. and of course the main point man of nearby village of Iblur Mr. Muniraju..Our condominium have 1700 votes and they were bargaining with us for the Main road construction ( not done for the last 5 years) if only we voted for Mr. Kumar. Mr.Ananth Kumar was talking about Vajpayee era and not about Modi and I know he will be a dissident when elected on behalf of Advani. Soon enough we had a visit from Mrs. Rohini Nilekenni. She talked about Mr.Nilekenni's role in INFY and creating lakhs of jobs in Bangalorre and also about AADHAR. She also talked about his honesty and how he is going to work for inner party democracy in Congress. When she found that the mood is pro Modi, she even talked about a credible opposition and Nilekenni will be one in the parliament.. She just did not understand politics of the streets as finally people vote not for lofty ideals but for roads etc which Ananth kumar and his team was knowing well. When I suggested to her as the local Government is from Congress, she should appoint a points-man to whom we can go for our roads, Kathas and ration cards as we find the local BJP MLA is the only one available for any job. She said MR.Nilekenni is planning to appoint one local man for every one of 7 Assembly constituencies after the election !!!!Well I could see Mr.Ananth Kumar had his ears and within next day came to our office and after talking to our association office bearers got the main road made within same night in flat 2 hours , the election commission ban not withstanding. That is street politics and sadly Nilekenni just did not have it in him. By this act Mr. Ananth Kumar not only got our votes but also surrounding 7 or 8 odd blocks in the area which might be having a combined vote bank of nearly 5 to 6 thousand. The goodwill will actually continue during the next local election also. I talked to a village elder of Iblur village and he said that Mrs.Rohini Nilekenni only gave lecture and did not understand their needs which is 2 streets in their village not getting Cauvery water while 4 streets get it. It requires a special valve which might cost about rupees 5000/-. I Donot think Mrs Nilekenni even talked to the local villagers about this..
It is all good to hold debates about voting rights and make people aware etc.. but how many of IT people from layouts and apartments come out and vote?? As long as we do not vote nothing will ever change. Some of us vote because we can read the manifesto and feel happy about it...But poor people are better off in that they take money,booze, briyani from ALL the candidates and then do their ground work and then vote for the guy who gives the most in goodies and services and they ensure that elected MLA/MP continues to give these throughout his term.They do not read manifestos but talk to the guys and drive a hard bargain for all including their family and village which may include illegal electric connections, Cauvery water connection and admit cards in state run schools for children who skip classes, Yeshvashni scheme for health , bail for thier drunkard husbands etc etc.
This is what i read in a newspaper about one of the voter/candidates interactive seminars. As long as the talk stayed within the old boundaries -- roads, drains, toilets, parks, and other civic stuff - all candidates uniformly promised the same things. They, and they alone, could and would fix it. Then when a participant threw in the question about Akrama Sakrama, and suddenly they were all on edge. Basically the candidates donot want to talk about illegal mining to some cases or benami farm holdings or gifting of sarkari lands to some religious trusts,boards or burial grounds which may later turn out to be used for some other commercial purposes.
In a recent seminar at a local college some sprightly kids said that they do not vote because they do not find a suitable candidate or most of the candidates are corrupt or just everyday politics bored them except when they tend to criticize Mayawathi's elephants,laloo's fodder scam or Kumaraswamy's espousal of fielding ex convicts . Generals Zia-ul-Haq,Musharaff etc are all ramrod straight, uncorrupted in the normal sense of the way and one looks at Shasthriji, Indira Gandhi, Vajpayee etc and you see these dhothi/saree clad leaders will not win a pageant but Democracy wins in India and every country is jealous of us..But these IT kids will not ponder.They will use the NOTA button not knowing they are actually defranchising themselves. I am sure they would not have braved the sun even if Narayana Murthy has contested from this seat. They will not vote for Nilekenni because that will make Rahul the PM as if they would have voted for him in case he stood as independent. They celebrate International woman's day and they send emails in support of pink jaddi campaign but ask them about pending legislations in parliament, they just have no clue.Infact I do not think they have ever posted their comments in various legislation s which are in public domain especially affecting women's rights, children rights or rights and welfare of senior citizens and of the disabled.
But this time our folks have tasted blood with a road and our voting may be better compared to last time when only 73 voted out of 760 voters. I feel sorry for Nilekenni because I think he will loose along with Mr.Balakrishnan. But I hope they learn to become good politicians along with being honest,educated and good persons.