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April 2019


The parliamentary election of 2019 isn’t about who will become the prime minister, or which political party will come to power. It isn’t about the economy, growth, development, or jobs. It isn’t about the future of the poor, farmers and middle class or the emergence of new social order. It isn’t about India emerging as a new global superpower in this century, or how this will become the Asian Century with India and China dictating to the world. And, it also isn’t about nationalism, secularism, regionalism, or similar isms. In essence, it is not about whatever you see, hear and read.

The ongoing election, spread over 38 days, is about the immense centralisation of power at the national and the states’ levels, growing erosion of democratic institutions, lack of governance, and the muting of people’s voices. Over seven decades since we got our independence, we have witnessed leaders, even charismatic and popular ones, appropriate powers. Sadly, this trend now seems to be in the last stages, so that the centralisation of power may become the rule, rather than the exception. Be it at the Centre or the states, those in power will increasingly show authoritarian trends, rather than represent the people who vote for them.