Has Indian democracy reached the Tipping Point ? This is a pertinent question that arises this election year. The symptoms are all there, the record voter turnouts, high decibel pitches, record low stoops by candidates, an influx of middle class nominations and a lot of youth participation.
In many ways it looks like social behavior and political moorings are reaching a Tipping point. Not only the 2014 elections are being heralded as the largest but also a definite milestone.
The Indian voter seems to now think that growth is not all that bad, be it participative growth or constructive development. This is a big change from the aspect of socialism, and has caused drop in the preference for Left parties. Communalism plank is also not a bestseller this year. Unfortunately for us, the British used the religious card and our politicians further broke it down to communities and castes. The unprecedented win of the AAP in Delhi indicates that this tipping point is on us for sure. The victory of AAP was that it gave people an alternate choice. Though the AAP government in Delhi dint live up to expectations, it has urged many people whatever be their background to come forward and actively participate in politics.
It is indeed unfortunate that none of our political parties saw this change coming or prepared themselves for a mandate which signals this change. They still wander in dynasty ( read monarchy), communal divisions ( read british raj policy), socialism ( nehruvian utopian idea) and what not. Many stoop to a new low using hate words and other mechanisms to get media space like favoring rapists. But the Indian electorate is fast cruising to a higher platform, desiring empowerment, education and growth.
Now the big question is, will there be leaders who can ensure a smooth change over ? Leaders who can collectively group people together, lend their charisma, welcome debates and participate in discussions with the electorate are the need of the hour. Neither a famous surname, nor a single man show can fit the bill.
Lets hope in the next few years a drastic shift would happen in our political parties reflecting the mood of the people and ready to herald them to the next milestone for India.