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Homechevron_rightOpinionchevron_rightEditorialchevron_rightPeople's priority is...

People's priority is livelihood issues

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Peoples priority is livelihood issues
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Last Monday, the leaders of the main opposition Congress met the Election Commission and complained that the BJP, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself, has tried to raise racial and sectarian issues in the campaign programs for the upcoming general elections. By invoking issues from Ram and Ram Temple to Muslim League's Congress support and Love Jihad, the ruling party, which ruled two terms and is trying to win a third, is hoping to secure the Hindu vote bank and get away by unleashing anti-Muslim racial propaganda. For this, they are led by the Prime Minister, who is a celebrity campaigner. Narendra Modi, who is aiming for Rahul Gandhi in the opposition, is trying to shake up not only the party workers but also the Hindu sections by giving a racial interpretation to every statement of Rahul and other opposition leaders. Even after ruling the Centre for two whole terms, overhauling the constitution, renovating the parliament complex, and running around the country with grand inaugurations and declaring multi-billion dollar development plans, Modi and the Hindutva brigade have yet to gain traction for the elections, a consternation that comes out in their efforts to entangle the election debate in the abominable racial agenda.

It cannot be said whether the Prime Minister, who has been repeating 'Achhe Din, Sabka Vikas' umpteen times for the last ten years, is perhaps unsettled by knowing the realities on the ground. With the revelation of the in and out of the electoral bond exercise, the face of corruption of the government was revealed to the public. The use of government machinery like ED, IT, CBI, NIA, etc., to intimidate opponents and rope them in, and the country being able to relise the result of corporate cronyism in the form of 'Modanimix' has thrown the central government leadership into panic. After the non-partisan public activists and journalists dismantled the Sangh Parivar's attempt to wrap the election campaign around ethnic agendas and brought the bad vibes of the Modi administration- which completed two terms - to the public, they are looking for ways to stay in the campaign field. It is the result of that, too, And the renewed racial script is prepared at the initiative of the Prime Minister himself. It appears that Narendra Modi, who has launched his campaign for a third term by creating an undeclared emergency, through imprisoning chief ministers and crushing his opponents politically and financially, banning and bribing the media, has been showing all signs of having realised that if a free and fair election is held, the prospects are bleak.

Indications from reports emerging from independent agencies are that that the voters are not enamouired of the Hindutva agenda being pushed by the Prime Minister and Sangh Parivar leaders and their media and cyber warriors. Although the prime minister and the Sangh Parivar leaders are pushing ahead with the ethnic agenda in the name of the people, the results of popular surveys at the grassroots level reveal that what concerns the people are livelihood issues, and their anxiety is whether they will be resolved through the upcoming elections. An example is the facts revealed in 'The Hindu-CSDS Lokniti 2024 Prepoll Survey' conducted by 'The Hindu' newspaper in collaboration with CSDS, a leading non-governmental economic and social research institute of the country. Regardless of the issue that partisan politicians are interested in, the main issues for the majority of voters are the problems they face - severe inflation and unemployment. Voters say that the dream of 'good days' (Achhe Din) promised by the BJP during the 2014 elections is yet to materialise as evidence of which they highlight their plight of not being able to meet income and expenditure. Sixty percent of the survey respondents say that it is difficult to get a job anywhere in the country. Seventy-one percent complain that their backs are broken by the daily household expenses.

The report also points out that the plight of the poor and marginalised in rural areas is dire. When it comes to Muslim and Dalit groups, elements of discrimination also get added to this matrix. All sections want dignified financial security, not government-providing 'charitable schemes' resembling alms to beggars. Citizens who live by paying taxes in their own country seek relief from life's problems such as inflation, unemployment, and social discrimination. Even as the ruling party of the country comes forward with the technique of utilising the chaos by stirring up the blind followers with ethnic and sectarian recipes, the search of the discerning voters is who can bring solution to their problems. In this contest, the answer to the question who will win - the people or the blind following - will determine the result of the election - and thereby the future of the nation too.

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TAGS:Modi governmentLok Sabha elections 2024Ediorial
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