NOTA reduces the odds

The NOTA option on the polls made me wonder the same thing as the letter writer, G Pal. But a friend of mine (Awaiz Mukadam) explained to me its significance. ‘None of the Above’ ensures that if we are not satisfied with any of the parties, then we can lessen their chances of winning. This would force all the parties to be better and competitive. It is not equivalent to not-going-for-voting-at-all. It is like a weapon for the people that they can use if none of the parties are up to the mark. Otherwise, any average party (among other worse parties) can win the election.

Rajeshwari H K Ashar

Not so funny, Mr Pawar

 This is with reference to report on Pawar asking his party supporters to vote twice  ( March 24). While Pawar is not known for witty comments, he has defended himself when caught on the wrong foot with the lame excuse of ‘humour.’ Perhaps he is not sure of victory for his candidates in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, and so wants his voters to vote twice, so that his candidates might emerge victorious! While one feels sorry for the veteran politician, his ill-conceived and ill-timed humour is bound to backfire!

Shreeram Paranjpe

Voters will know better, hopefully

 Sharad Pawar has put his foot in his mouth by inciting voters to vote twice on different dates, after taking care to erase the indelible ink mark from their fingers. He later retracted his remarks saying it was a joke, but everybody knows that such things happen in Indian democracy, where voters are used as puppets by politicians.   Politicians are ‘a bunch of jokers’ themselves and electoral reforms are the need of the hour to cleanse Indian politics, where corruption and malpractices have become a rule rather than the exception. Senior leaders like Sharad Pawar should not make such statements in the twilight of his career and owes the nation an apology. Voters have the final say in a democracy and people should come out in great numbers to vote for candidates who are honest, educated and able to serve the nation for the coming five years. People found indulging in bogus voting should be severely punished with a jail term, so that it acts as a lesson for other people of their tribe and politicians too should be made accountable and punished if they incite voters to indulge in malpractices. The majority of voter population is fairly young this time and I am sure people will disregard all such suggestions and cast their franchise appropriately for an effective government at the centre in the days to come.

S N Kabra

This called for ‘chai pe charcha’

If only NaMo had initiated a ” chai per charcha” in his own party, he would not be struggling to achieve mission 272+ in his own house , leave aside his ‘lakshya’ for Election 2014. Will the infighting in the BJP bring them down, as an intra-party faction doesn’t want to see NaMo win on his own. If NaMo achieves the magic mark on his own, his already larger-than-life image gets a gigantic boost, sidelining those who are unhappy with his dictatorial style of functioning, further.

The drama over L K Advani’s seat has deepened the cracks, which any way, were quite visible with the (safe) seat allocation to various leaders in the past couple of weeks. Sitting MPs of Varanasi and Lucknow were upset over their removal to accommodate the prime minister-in-waiting and the party president on those seats respectively. It hardly matters from where LK Advani fights now, the damage to the party image has already been done. It is no more is the ‘disciplined’ party that once it was projected to be. LK Advani is probably the senior most member of the party and so deserved respect. He should have been given the privilege to choose his seat to fight probably his last general election. At 86, he will be in his nineties if the next government lasts its full term and may call it a day by then.

Has NaMo’s arrogance dented BJP’s chances, as the rebellion of the anti-Modi camp is now in the open.

Abdul Monim

Best to call it a day

With reference to Seema Mustafa’s appraisal of the party patriarch’s position today, ‘Undermining the party patriarch,’ (March 24), he (L.K.Advani) is just ‘a somebody’ inside the party and ‘nobody’ outside, especially among the 55 per cent or so voters who are young and were born after Advani’s heyday. For them, it’s an ‘Advani who?’ and ‘Jaswant who?’ kind of a predicament when it comes to appreciating their contribution or making a voting choice. Under the circumstances, these veterans or the so-called stalwarts themselves should call it quits and confine themselves to party work. One should quit on one’s own, instead of waiting to be asked. Such a situation is downright much more denigrating and humiliating for self-respecting persons. Don’t Advani, or for that matter, Jaswant Singh, know this response dynamic or simple truth pertaining to the ground reality surrounding them?

R N Shanbhag

Not much of a game changer

With reference to ’Game changer in Tamil Nadu’ (March  24), I doubt that the new five-party front will bring cheer to the NDA. While the BJP’s voter base may help the ‘established others’, the vote-share of the latter is unlikely to help the BJP.  Post-poll, when ‘Modi’ is in trouble, they’ll lean on a possible UPA bandwagon. Only Vaiko’s MDMK will remain solid, with the BJP-only positive probability. Let’s remember, the BJP is more a Hindi fanatic, than a Hindutva one, to the Tamils. Venkaiah Naidu’s mere ‘lip service’ on Sri Lankan Tamils won’t carry the voters. Did it come to their rescue in the US motion in the UN against Rajapaksa? Not that US motions are good enough, but the UPA, the DMK included, helping the Lankan dictator in his war crimes, is still evergreen in the Tamils’ minds. In this land of Dravidian outfits, there is no Modi wave. Your observation that Jaya will be marginally affected is correct, with the AIADMK getting some 30-35 seats. The million dollar question is how will Jaya behave? We simply can’t underestimate the ‘Teen Deviyan.’  The Congress and DMK+allies would certainly be routed.

Subrahmanian S H

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal