Sunday, May 07, 2006

Let The Polling Begin!

[Pic Courtesy The Hindu]

Polling has begun in the elections back home even as I'm writing this. As far as I can remember, there has always been an anti-incumbent wave during elections in TamilNadu after MGR passed away. This resulted in a ping-pong match of power between the AIADMK and the DMK, as JJ or KK won with a big margin during one election, only to lose with an equally big margin in the next. But this one is supposed to be a cliffhanger with nobody being able to predict with any degree of certainty, which of the two parties would win.

This election and its campaign has certainly been a circus. Party members like Vaiko and Sarathkumar shifted loyalties suddenly and surprisingly, and vigorously attacked the same party to which they had belonged to, just a few days before! The party's platform or principles didn't matter and resentment at seat allocation was openly stated as the reason for jumping from one party to another. Personal attacks and below-the-belt punches were the order of the day. Drama and sentiments marked the campaign and the propaganda ads (Since I can see only Sun TV, I have seen only the DMK ads but I'm guessing its the same story on Jaya TV). And as the graphic above shows, the line between a 'campaign promise' and a 'bribe', which had already been blurry to begin with, disappeared completely as the two parties tried to beat the other in offering subsidised or completely free stuff to the voters.

In any race, the rhetoric usually is "May the best team win!" But for this election, I guess it would be more appropriate to say "May the lesser of the two evils win!"

13 Comments:

At 11:53 PM, Blogger Rajesh Thiagarajan said...

"May the lesser of the two evils win!" - well said Balaji.

However, it would be interesting to follow the results on 11th.

IMO, political propaganda(in the form of news, advertisements) should be kept out from the entertainment channels.

Rajesh

 
At 12:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes..well said balaji

RS

 
At 5:42 AM, Blogger Prasanna said...

Balaji, this yr the elections have been quite an exciting one. Everyday news wld have something eager to wait. And the election campaigns were not far behind as they too had some funny thing to look fwd to. And still one is not certain which party wld win the elections.

 
At 8:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, "Pick your poison" time. I wish the makkals took a bold stance and just voted for someone other than the usual culprits. But in the end, they will end up sadly digging their own graves, buying into all the promises of free TV, rice or whatever.

On a different vote, I wish there was an e-voting option for NRIs :-)Maybe next time around

 
At 8:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I meant "on a different NOTE"..:-)

 
At 9:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"munaala irundhavan 300 kodi thirudan-aachey nu ivanukku voteu poaattaa ivan 500 kodi thirudan-aa irukaan"
- Sujatha's line in Muthalvan
sums up my feelings on this election.
it really doesnt matter...
Nenju porukkuthillaye
Indha vetkam ketta arasiyalvaadhigallai ninaithu...!

 
At 10:53 AM, Blogger Filbert said...

I was surprised at couple of things about yday's elections:

1) the voter turn-out in our state. 65% is a really good figure and the Hindu says that this is a record since 1991.
2) the Junior Vikatan survey which has predicted 207 seats for the DMK alliance.

But like you said, lets wait & see which combine proves to be the lesser evil.

 
At 1:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay, should we now consider Karunanidhi the 'lesser of the 2 evils'?.. Looks like DMK has it nailed down!..

 
At 3:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like the sun (or the son?:)) is going to rise again.

If I could, I would have voted for the DMK just for their catchy propoganda songs (nothing else separates them from the rest:). My favourites

1) Mannar kudi konda karunanidhi vaazhgave
2) Karunayum nidhiyum ondrai serndhaal karunanidhiyaagum
3) Kalaignar aatchi malara pogum kaalam varudhadaa
4) Paalayamkottai siraiyinilae, paambugal palligal naduvinilae, anjaamal irundadhu yaaru
5) Kaamathciyae Kaamatchiyae naalai varum nammatchiyae

 
At 4:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

namma naadirukkura nelamaiyai elaam ungalukku nallaave theriyum...
onnum solluraapala illave ille...!

-- a wise bard!

 
At 4:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Karunanidhi it is! according to the exit polls - hinduonline.com says has this to say.

Unlike most of the above bloggers, I happen to have only numtv(Jaya TV) connection and so, I watched only the Jaya election propagandas/campaigns...There are a couple of interesting programs which I happened to watch - one was an interview with Visu where the people get to meet him and ask questions. Visu had some really strong opinions on certain issues which to me seemed so foolish and totally biased...I really like Visu and was thoroughly disappointed when he called Karunanidhi "andha kizhavar"(please do not think that by any means I am supporting DMK or AIADMK - it is just my humble opinion that age needs to be respected - atleast when it comes to programs on national TV). Also, I happened to watch another program with Cho. That program was OK, meaning eventhough Cho clearly wants AIADMK to win, he did not throw words like Visu did.

As Balaji said- "May the lesser of the two evils win!"

-Anon

 
At 7:46 PM, Blogger Meera said...

Yup.. between the devil and the deep sea.

 
At 10:24 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

rajesh, yeah will be eagerly looking fwd to the results. and at its heart, sun tv is definitely a political channel.

vijay, i always hear a lot of people saying that(this yr, vijayakanth was the option for most people saying that). but i think in the end, they think that their vote will go waste since the person will not win anyway and end up casting their vote for one of the 2 big parties...

ram, awesome line that perfectly illustrates the situation today!

filbert, looks like many of the exit polls r predicting the same as the JV survey. but not as many seats though :)

sandya, to be honest, i have no idea who would be lesser of the evils among jj and kk. guess we all agree that they r both evil though :)

vp, havnt heard those. but the descriptions of kk during all those programs on sun tv was pretty poetic :)

anon, i think when most people show up on sun tv or jaya tv, they immediately start toeing their political line. in visu's case, i read somewhere that his 'arattai arangam' contract was over and he was trying to get a program on jaya tv. so that was probably why is was trying to get on jj's good side by dissing kk...

me, another nice phrase :)

 

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