Friday, May 16, 2014

The elections of hope

No one can predict the future. Those who keep making fancy predictions based on their ideologies often end up looking foolish. But what can be predicted and seen, if we have the eyes, is the "future that has already happened", as Peter Drucker puts it. When witnessing the spectacular victory of Narendra Modi in the 2014 elections, one is reminded of the political pundits' gross miscalculation of the people's aspirations and their refusal to see the reality of the day. Those who denied the "wave" are now forced to acknowledge the "tsunami".

And what a victory it is! Come to think of it, no party other than the Congress has achieved a 272+ majority till now. Credit for this grand victory must go to Modi who led his campaign around development and good governance. His energy, his speeches and his vision inspired the nation to vote for him, setting aside regional considerations. More than anything, Modi has led the nation from pessimism to hope. He has shown people the dream of an India filled with glory and development, a dream whose time has come. Take a bow Modi Ji, your story of personal success is truly inspirational. We hope your victory will be India's victory too.

I had been a big supporter of  the Aam Admi Party from their IAC days. When some friends were discarding their agitation for Jan Lokpal, I argued rather emotionally  in support of Jan Lokpal and the Anna movement. When AAP won in Delhi, I was glad that AAP achieved what Lok Satta could not achieve till now - get mass support for clean politics. But alas, Kejriwal and AAP proved to be a disappointment from then on. I tried my best to give them a chance but they kept on repeating the same antics day after day. My old manager once told me - "People may misunderstand your intentions, but will often give you a benefit of doubt. That is your chance to prove them wrong. But if you keep repeating the same behavior, you can no longer blame them for their misunderstanding. It is now entirely your fault." So AAP, lost my trust, so to say. So, in a way, I am glad that AAP got a fitting reply from people in these elections. I hope they come to senses with this defeat, introspect their failures and mend their "arrogant attitude".

Along with Lok Satta, I believe AAP has a significant role to play in the coming years. Earlier, in their euphoria, AAP has refused to join hands with Lok Satta, but I now hope that they will be more willing to work with like-minded parties. Together, AAP and Lok Satta are needed to put a check on the Narendra Modi's government. Incidentally, Lok Satta party has lost terribly in these elections with even Jaya Prakash Narayan not winning a seat. While I feel sad for JP, I think the mandate is kind of expected, given the polarized election in AP in the wake of a divided state. But as Modi rightly pointed out in his victory speech, parties have an important role to play in democracy even if they do not win any seats. Someone like JP is very much needed for India. I only hope AAP joins with him to make the movement stronger.

Back in AP, it is a good news that Chandrababu Naidu's TDP has won the elections in Seemandhra. While I see the YSR Congress Party to be "very corrupt", I acknowledge that many others consider it better than TDP. The results show that YSRCP does enjoy a significant support. In the end, hopefully the better party won and it is expected that CBN will lead the newly separated state to prosperity and development. My congratulations and good-luck wishes to him.  I don't have much hopes on TRS in Telangana, having seen their leaders' conduct during the Telangana movement. But I give them a benefit of doubt and hope that they will deliver good results in Telangana, fulfilling the aspirations of lakhs of people who dreamt of development in a separate Telangana state.

These elections have been truly path-breaking. One hopes that the decisive mandate will provide a stable government focused on development. Modi spoke of  forming a development team comprising of all the state CMs. Hope such coordination and collaboration does become a reality. Hope, while being a powerful feeling, needs to be rekindled often. So hopefully this is just the beginning and we see promising outcomes soon. Hope so!

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