At last, the fiercely contested Delhi Election is over. It has been touted as the most bitterly fought election. The dust is gradually settling down and there are a number of lessons to be learnt from this poll, not only for the political parties but also the candidates, the media and the general public.

1. More than being an issue based campaigning, there were more of personality clashes during the rallies and debates on TV channels. Rather than throw muck on each other, each party spokesperson/leader must talk only about his party’s road map for development and issues which affect the Common Man. They should play to their strengths, rather than attacking rivals for petty personal reasons. It is regrettable that the media (without exception) acted as catalysts to make the spokespersons stoop to low levels and attack each other below the belt. The media persons rather than steer the discussion to be clean, healthy and above board, watched the proceedings in glee. The media must act as responsible watch-dogs to take charge of the debate and skilfully perform their duty to give the viewers a close insight into the strengths of every party.

2. Brakes have been applied on the saffron juggernaut by a common man’s party. It is now the primary responsibility of the Central Government and the Government of Delhi to come together and collaborate with each other (instead of confronting each other for petty gains) for the common good of the people.

3. I expect the Central Government to treat Delhi as any other state and extend all help and cooperation for the National Capital’s all round growth and development, so that Delhi’s progress can be showcased as a model city to other states and to the world.

4. I expect the new Government of Delhi to keep aside all differences with the ruling party at the Centre and work consistently and dedicatedly towards improving the style and standard of living of the common man. It should fulfil all the promises made to the citizens of Delhi.

5. It is a litmus test for the incumbent government to provide a clean, honest and efficient administration.

6. It is not only the 1.25 crore people of Delhi but also the 125 crore citizens of India who smell a whiff of fresh air and a hope for better days to come in the aftermath of the electoral victory in terms of a probable/possible political alternative to the traditional parties. There will definitely be a national impact of the result of this election, on the national scene and an impact on even the way other countries view India.

7. It is a healthy growth of competition in the political arena and the dawn of a new era in Indian politics. And contrary to what the media experts say, the losers are not relegated to a nonentity; it is only a matter of time and wise strategy for the losers to bounce back into consideration.

8. With the elections in Bihar, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh in the near future, the election campaigns are feared to get even murkier, given the pronouncements made by leaders and workers of different parties. People are literally fed up of the stereotyped political debates, where each party spokesperson lampoons his opponent, with the media persons taking all the credit for the fights.

9. There can be only one winner in any game, be it sports or politics. I urge the victors to be humble and modest in victory; and the losers to be graceful in defeat. There are definitely some reasons for defeat and the losing parties should sincerely introspect and investigate why the electorate did not prefer them over the victors.

10. Finally, the elections in Delhi, as in any of the elections in India, be they for the Panchayats, the Municipal Corporations, the Assemblies or the Parliament, have time and again illustrated that it is a victory for democracy, which is thriving in the largest democracy in the world.

Anup Y. Attavar

Connecting Indians
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