Some would say it was the Indo-Nuclear deal that did it, others would say it was the sound business sense of Dr Manmohan Singh. I was under the impression that this time around the hung parliament would make matters even worse. Since already 2 terms of coalition governments have concluded leaving a bitter taste with the people. There was also the growing predicament that a spineless 3rd front would emerge from the shadows. The war in the neighbourhood did make matters complicated for a host of parties.
All we observed in the previous government was the incessant bickering of the Left over non issues. The UPA was also challenged with the “no confidence motion” which was won. But not without its share of media coverage of the “cash for vote” scam, being termed as the blackest day in parliament where MPs waved wades of cash in the lower house. There were schemes like the NREGS and the farmer loan waver that made a inconspicuous but major impression with the rural junta. And last but not the least the RTI act which came into being, making transparent governance a possibility within the reach of the common man.
Campaigning began with renowned names campaigning in the sweltering heat. Some had the respite of honey to keep their voices intact, while others drank a lot of water to prevent dehydration. The entire campaigning was a farce meant to confuse people with unrealistic promises of bringing back money form swiss bank accounts, to rice at Rs2/- per kg. Some parties made little or no effort to campaign aggressively, knowing well that the”foot in mouth syndrome was rampant“, and any comments on their part would not make any head way with the aam junta. And of course there were the ghosts like the Q factor from the past with arguments geared to shift focus from the main issues, now even though also since the Q has been deemed innocent after wrangling for so many years and the real facts have been explained. With food costs and the lot in inflationary mode these seemed foolish promises at best. Interestingly the prospects of the 3rd front being ambitious enough to begin negotiations with parties on its formation. What made matters worse were the stupendous claims of each party leader for the post of the prime minister. The obvious fact being forgotten here was that with multiple leaders a third front was a shot in the dark.
57% out of the 714 million voted to say something and the verdict was out on the 16th of may, a truly memorable day in the lives of everyone. The euphoria was evident in the stock market the following Monday where ~98% stocks registered gains that day.Though the losers will have some one or the other to blame for their debacle, but there is a growing sense that the mature voter of this nation cannot be taken for granted by the hardliners. Development was the mantra with India being looked up, to lead all others in tiding over the recession hit economies of other nations.
With only 1% of the fines being imposed by the RTI(as of estimates of todays news paper), and the economy still suffering the after effects of recession, there is a lot the current government has to do in terms of immediate measures. Every newspaper is flooded with the dissection and analysis the next heir, but whether the younger generation will be handed the baton by the mostly sextegenerian government is an interesting question to begin with. As soon as the recession has past and the government has achieved stability i terms of its workings, i believe there will be a cabinet reshuffle where the younger hands will receive their share of responsibility.