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Letter to BS: Voters left with very few viable electoral options

This has to do with the phenomenon of a 'wasted vote' and the resultant oligarchy of established political parties

Business Standard 

First time voters  show their fingers marked with indelible ink after casting votes for the Assembly elections, at a polling station in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. Photo: PTI

This refers to the articles on the election verdict in Hindi heartland states. While anti-incumbency, routine or overdue, is a defining feature of a democracy, hopefully, this election verdict has sufficiently demonstrated to those in power, the diminishing utility of ultra-right fanaticism that has overpowered all sane perspectives over the past few years. Although the Indian voter has time and again humbled seemingly invincible leaders as well as narratives, a truly progressive electoral alternative remains elusive. Thinking beyond extraneous political logjam, even if a voter comprehends the deep systematic issues facing the Indian government and reforms needed in virtually all its domains, he is left with very few viable electoral options.

This has to do with the phenomenon of a “wasted vote” and the resultant oligarchy of established political parties. Perhaps, the “first past the post” voting system has outlived its utility for India and is a major factor that keeps Indian democracy from transcending short-term confrontational politics and transitioning to cooperative politics of nation-building.

Atul Sisodia Delhi

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First Published: Wed, December 12 2018. 21:28 IST
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