Tomorrow begins the 3rd phase of voting in India and in particular voting in Bombay. It’s back to the 1980’s here in India, the two big political heavy weights are bringing up issues from the past such as the Bofors scandal of the mid 80’s. But, I should not be surprised if the candidates are not going to talk about the real issues – food, infrastructure, education or water then what can you talk about. That really leaves a candidate with two options to incite FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) in a voter and that is either past political scandals or religion. Varun Gandhi was reprimand by the Election Commission for talking religious smack at a voter rally. Thank god for video cameras or Varun would have continued down the path of communal riots. His response to the video of him was classic – it was doctored and not him.
But, at the local level several TV stations have invited the candidates for South Bombay to an open forum and talk about the issues. They all spoke well and seem to understand the problems and issues that are faced by people living in Bombay. But, I get the sense many residents of South Bombay live in a bubble and don’t have a clue what is happening in the rest of India – The Real India. And the real India is where all the real money goes. My petty issues of better roads and high speed internet seem stupid when compared to villages in Madya Pradesh that still have issues with running water and getting more then 8 hours of electricity a day.
The 2 main issues I hear most often in regards to the elections:
1. Who should I vote for? One party will pick my left pocket and the other my right pocket. And, there is no point in voting for an independent like Meera Sanyal since the system won’t work with her.
2. If the Congress party is elected the Sensex will zoom up. Seriously, WTF? Another attempt to play on people’s fear since many are invested. No party Congress or BJP has even talked about their economic policy so how the hell can one assume if Congress is elected the equity markets will race up. If you haven’t noticed the Indian markets are being driven in tandem with international markets and will continue for quite some time.
Honestly, I’m glad I can’t vote in this election it’s almost like picking between dumb and dumber.