Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Meaningful movement...

It is never easy to walk the talk. Especially when there is money and power involved. In one of its television advertisement, Lok Satta offered a bribe to the voters. Infact it said, Lok Satta offers a bigger bribe than money and wine for your vote – the bright future of your children.

 

Imagine the kind of thinking that must have gone into coming up with that slogan. Now tell me, why wouldn’t we want to choose such leaders?

 

Post 26/11, the urban voter has been very vocal in demanding some drastic changes in the system. Urban India is frustrated at the kind of political culture prevailing at present. The lack of etiquette, the disregard for good manners, and disrespect to the law of the land is clearly getting on to the nerve of the Indian voter.

 

The urban voter wanted someone who had clarity in their thought process, conviction in their ideas and commitment to their policies.  Jayaprakash Narayan (JP) and his party Lok Satta offered precisely this. It primarily wanted to usher in a new culture in politics and in governance, which is precisely what the urban voter was also demanding.

 

What started as a social movement in 1997 slowly transformed into a political party in 2006. JP was and is the chief propagator of the message of the party, and he did it with such clarity that slowly people began to take notice of what he is saying. Every argument of his is backed up with statistics, and is nearly very convincing. The unconventional style of the Lok Satta’s approach to politics might take a very long time to sink into the prevailing mindsets of the masses, but 2009 is surely the best time to make a beginning.

 

A closer look at JP’s speeches and Lok Satta’s policy documents reveal the huge amount of experience that has gone into writing and framing them. Promising decentralization of power to the village level, establishing district level cabinet committees, increasing accountability into the system, investing huge amounts in the development of infrastructure for schools and hospitals are all visionary ideas that will ensure that security of all people in the years to come. Unfortunately we all live in a world where solutions have to be instant and results have to be immediately imminent.

 

To integrate itself into the Indian political scenario is also a big task for Lok Satta. It cannot remain vary to the demands of the voters for long. The party needs leaders at the constituency and district level. The party needs other visible faces that are as articulate as JP is in spreading the message. In this election, Lok Satta will create a split in votes in most of the places, but is not going to win any of them. Some of the candidates are going to lose very badly too. And this is primarily because India lives in its villages and rural India is still not yearning for the kind of change urban India is.

 

Rural people identify the local candidate and the party in equal measure. Lok Satta does not have such identifiable leaders in these areas and that’s exactly why it cannot win any seats with a lot of rural population. Post this election, the immediate task on hand for the party is to build local leaders who can better identify with the specific problems of the area and provide unique solutions too.

 

To make that task easier, here’s what the urban voters should do – send a couple of representatives to the Assembly and let’s see for the next 5 years what kind of constructive role they play in the functioning of the assembly. Show Lok Satta that it need not lose heart. The disgruntled urban voter needs to allow Lok Satta to use these successful examples to better propagate their message, and thereby become part of a meaningful movement.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well said..
In movies we have this main stream cinema and off beat cinema or better known as art movies. We agree that an art movie has better actors and performances but still prefer main stream because of its high budget promotional stunts, masala and mass appeal.
If we apply the same naming conventions, Lok Satta is an off beat party. Congress, TDP and PRP are main stream parties and are sadly still trying to ride on the party founders, living or dead, rather than showing development in the past and future (cheap promotional ads).

Sarath (u know who this is... :P)

Sandeep said...

I am not being skeptical about Lok Satta but Indian political scenario is such that one needs to fight fire with fire. I strongly feel Lok Satta cannot stick to very idealistic principles and wish for a breakthrough in this field.

Most of the points what JP speaks about do make sense but the methods suggested to achieve them need some serious rethinking.

Anyways all the best to the man the party the movement and hope they get few seats this time.

Anonymous said...

JP is a visionary and Lok Satta entered into politics with a clear plan after waiting for almost a decade. I think he would have set certain expectations from this elections which is to grab certain percentage of votes but not to win all the seats Lok Satta is contesting.

I would rather not split the votes between urban and rural communities but between educated and uneducated masses. With the new campaigning strategy of Lok Satta it obvious that JP is trying to reach beyond educated masses.

Look at the new marketing strategy of JP, TV advertisements on what Lok Satta promises quite different from the conventional party's ads, a fake thousand rupee note to catch the attraction of masses, pamphelts with railway timing and calenders which fits into your purse.

Nobody would have expected the kind of success that JP's train journey has achieved. I was surprised to see the crowd that was waiting at each railway station to welcoming and greeting JP.

Surely this election is special with lot of interest being created in youth to vote and parties like Lok Satta would motivate people to go and vote as they know that this vote matters a lot.

Lok Satta will have a long run.
Wishing all the best to Lok Satta.

-Sridhar

praneeth said...

hey I made a ppt on why one should vote for loksatta

The idea is to spread it virally in blogs, and explain voters(netizens) the main difference between Loksatta and other parties in a innovative way with a fictional char Subba Rao

See the PPT from below link and let me know your thoughts and plz help in spreading it among u r friends

http://www.slideshare.net/indizen/meet-subba-rao-1230820

Sisirio said...

When are you going to write about K.A.Paul ? :-)

Loksatta India said...

We have politicians who create regional and religious hatred, politicians who oppose projects like Tata Nano for political gains.

We can change our political system by voting for the right person and persuading/educating people around you to vote for the right person.

Loksatta led by Jayaprakash Narayan(Former IAS)is the only party which said it will not use
1) Money
2) Liquor
3) Religious hatred
4) Regional hatred to win in elections.

It is the only party which said it will not go for strikes to protest against government polocies but will protest in a democratic way.

For a country like India which has a 14% power deficiency importing nuclear technology for power generation is very important. Loksatta is the only party which was not part of the UPA (ruling coilation) which supported the Nuclear deal and urged other parties to support the deal which is very essential for our country.

When govt increased fuel prices because of the increased prices in gulf countries all oppositon parties did unfruitful works like using bullock carts to goto assembly. But loksatta is the only party which said we should reduce our dependency on oil (petrol) we should start using unconventional resources and fuel efficient technologies.

It is the only party which talks about providing good education and health facilities,infrastructure.

Let us all contribute by voting for the right person and campaign for parties like Loksatta which have great principles

PhaniJ said...

Loksatta needs grassroot organizations support. They need money and they put a limit on max amount that can be donated. That is the problem. The heart of the issue is money and man power which they lack. They need it if they want to sustain till 2014.

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