“It's exciting; I don't know whether I'm going to win or not. I think I am. I do know I'm ready for the job. And, if not, that's just the way it goes. ” The above line is said by President George Bush in context to the elections in United States of America, but it is relevantly true in India. A month later India is going to organize its largest election mela and the entire world is going to witness it. It will be the world’s costliest election ever happened, even greater then America’s Presidential elections. Over 70 million voters will cast their precious vote to choose their representative.
More than one thousand political parties are taking part in this jumbo fair of democracy. To choose 543 members of the Lok Sabha, it is estimated that the political parties will spend ten thousand crores of rupees. This amount is far ahead of any other elections held at any part of the globe. It is estimated that rupees two thousand crores will go in giving cash to voters and paying for their liquor parties in order to allure them to cast their precious votes for a particular party.
The other eight thousand crore rupees will go in ticket buying, advertisements, campaigning, booth capturing, party funds,buying weapons, travelling, and other accessories. The irony of the matter lies in the fact that the Election Commission grants only ten lac rupees to a candidate to campaign for his election. The era of elections has changed post independence. Now the mode of transport is no more the ‘Paidal Yatras’ but helicopters have taken over it. Now the leaders prefer to move in helicopters for their campaigns.
The mode of advertisements have also changed in this electronic age, now they have their own websites and blogs over internet, speeches are broadcasted through CDs, DVDs and advertisements and jingles are shown over satellite television channels. A hefty sum is spent over them. The next big issue is forming a coalition government and forming alliances. As it is said that; “Politics is the art of the possible”. Since the last two decades no party has succeeded in forming a single majority government but they have to make alliances with other small regional parties to into power. The one who join hands with the national parties to form a government are paid with heavy gifts and bonuses. The once with a large number of MPs behind them are blesses with great ministries.
To show power during the election rallies boost up their chance of winning. A large chunk of money is poured to the party workers to bring a large mass of people and bring hundred of cars to show the bigness of support to the leader. The other accessories like flex boards, banners, flags, bags, pens, pins, posters, stickers, masks, photos etc. has no count. After the elections all of them are found lying on the road sides.
They all are sheer waste of hard earned money of the people. What else will be more shameful that in the states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand these leaders bring bar girls to dance in their rallies. In the state of Haryana the local folk song singers are called to sing ‘Raginies’ for them. In Punjab they called various artists to perform Bhangra.
In the south the Tamil and Telegu film stars are called upon to gather the masses. The bollywood actors are all time favorites in the entire nation. All they say is that these are for the entertainment of the voters. Indian elections are always based on religion politics. To allure a particular caste and creed these political parties know how to get their religion gurus to come their way.
It is rightly said by Franklin Pierce Adams “Elections are won by men and women chiefly because most people vote against somebody rather than for somebody”. The political leaders effectively know how to make this statement favor them. Huge grants are given for the same in terms of perks and peaks. Elections are a waste of money in the true terms. The elected leaders forget to show their faces after winning. And for the five years government imposes taxes to achieve the losses occurred during elections and the leaders start making their pockets heavy because they have to elect again. Had this amount of money been spent on the welfare of nation?
We would have progressed by leaps and bounds and would have been on the top developed countries of the world. The money spent on elections is categorized as waste because the outcome makes no difference to the nation. This has been happening in India since the last sixty years. It makes no huge difference in who win or loss. The system remains the same. In the last I would like to quote Imelda Marcos. “Win or lose, we go shopping after the election. ”