In India, the term ‘election’ is a misnomer. People do not elect their true representatives, but select only the henchmen of their choice. There is no common goal of good governance among the electorate. Parochialism only rules the roost.
Election is not a ‘festival’ as it is portrayed by the misguided, commercial media. It is a serious exercise of choosing the right candidate. However, it has become a highly manipulative maneuver which aids only the anti-social elements to gain power. So, its reference as a ‘festival’ by the media and media personnel is unacceptable to common sense. Moreover, such narratives make the commoner feel that they have no big say in the process of selection but they can only reap the immediate benefits such as bribes. Media should desist from using undesirable and inappropriate narratives such as the term ‘election festival’.
Whipping up sentiments, slogans such as “It is your birth right, it is your duty to vote” people are coerced to participate in the bogus and fraudulent exercise. The nature and quality of the contestants is not talked about as loudly as it should be. Even what little is highlighted is ignored by the people because of considerations of caste and religious identities and money. There is a complete failure on the part of the judiciary and the executive in this regard. In party-oriented (not individual-oriented) electoral system, this cannot be remedied. People are brain washed to such an extent that they start perceiving voting as an inescapable task which alone can bring in some benefits to them.
In electioneering, failure to implement the programmes for positive development by the incumbent governments should be the main issue, but it is not. Only the wrong doings of the ruling class or vice versa becomes the main focus. As a result, the sham and bogus nature of the election process is not felt by the highly confused common man.
Electioneering by the candidates (of the parties) offering all sorts of sops and false promises is nothing short of a coercion. The fundamental principle of electing the right candidates goes completely awry. It is an open secret that only goondas get elected by sheer manipulation of the existing social factors. Surprisingly, by and large, there is no serious objection to this trend. But on the contrary, democracy established by such bogus elections is being lauded as a great system.
All the fundamental social aspects of elections are not gone through honestly. Truth is found to be the biggest casualty in this exercise. When such is the election scenario, merely choosing the candidates by voting satisfies only the technical aspect of elections. As the moral obligation to elect the right candidate is totally is absent, elections become an unholy exercise. The truth here is that people become unwary participants of this great tamasha committed on them.
Here in India, the candidates’ selection process for the contests is highly unscientific and irrational. Contestants are selected by the political parties based on their caste, religion and wealth, and the general public of the region has no say in the process. Social service attitude of the contestants is never a consideration though there may be a lot of claims with respect of the suitability for the selection of a candidate. When such is the case of the selection of these contestants, the psyche of the electorate is all the more disturbing. In a country where the majority is poor, stooped in superstitious ideas, their choice of the candidates can be anything but genuine. The so-called middle class is obsessed with their idea of wealth and social status such as caste, religion and the like. And they too are seen to be no better than the poverty-stricken lot in their choice of the representatives. The rich people are found to be the “don’t care” masters. Their choice will always be those political parties and candidates who will help them in stabilizing their business, trade, tax evasion, etc.
Therefore, it can be easily said that the election process in India is not a serious exercise, but a big tamasha enacted once in 5 years in order to satisfy what is called the ‘constitutional obligations’. Constitution was written with the hope that laws will be implemented in true spirit in the coming years. But here, laws are being created only to get twisted and turned in order to be misused. They are being bent and even broken to help the so-called ruling class. In this process, democracy is derailed and it exists only for the name sake. No democratic norm is respected by the ruling class and the politicians. They are found to make use of the existing social scenario, viz. poverty, social disparity, casteism, religious fundamentalism, economic disparity and superstitious beliefs, to their advantage only to usurp power.
Therefore, the only way to come out of this mockery of bogus elections is to start, quite earnestly, social transformation and continue the exercise for as long as necessary, so that people will become more and more enlightened. In the present social set up, democracy will only be a mirage and not a real solution to the faulty governance.
Picture Credits : livemint