Tag Archives: India Democracy

Indian General Elections 2014 – Results

Well over the last leg of the biggest dance of democracy across the world, which saw millions of people vote to elect their representatives who would lead them into the future, we observed great amount of enthusiasm among people & matching performances from their leaders.

Performances, yes that’s what we saw from the leaders. Over the last two months of campaigning it was not issues that were discussed, it was not future policies of the country that caught the attention, it was not even employment, infrastructure, health care, environment or trade relations with world that found merit.

What we saw was a great drama for democracy with top leaders busy in exchanging personal barbs at each other. It was like abyss with no end. We believe that at some point in time, these interactions got people so involved that even the TRPs of running soaps on Indian television would have taken a hit.

We hope that this is not the prequel of things to come. This is not what India needs. India needs Results and result oriented discussions and interactions. The campaign started out well with all parties raising issues and putting forth their plans for the nation but later degenerated into a mad rush to gather headlines and public eye. In most scenarios, it looked like the race to get best media coverage at what ever cost.

We hope that, once the new government is formed they would be result oriented and erase the past two months as a forgetful part of their run to be head of world’s largest democracy.

With respect to the results, whoso ever comes to power is not the real outcome of this elections. We think that winner in this elections are the common citizens of India. Record polling of with over 66% voter turn out, the 550 million people who voted have made it clear that in future “Results only matter”.

By ‘dod’ Rangers

Visit our views on needs of democracy & it’s people

 

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‘dod’ Mumbai Local Story – India’s Future (Final Part)

dod_Mumbai_Local

 

…………….. (Continued from earlier post)

It was 8:53 am and the local reached Kurla. There was a mass exodus of people from the local, as most of them were working in the BKC, Bandra Kurla Complex, which was not far from this station. In came Adil, a well built up guy in his mid 30s, Adil was working in the sales function of a multinational.

“Hey Software how are you” said Adil, referring to Shanker who was a software engineer working with a bank in Fort.

Shanker said, “Good Bhai jaan, but Jignesh looks slightly off today”. He wanted Adil to needle Jignesh. Adil was quick to jump on the que said, “What happened Shares (Jignesh’s nick-name, again framed by Adil), market is bullish but your face shows like bears are hugging you”.

It was lot of laughs around with Adil and Shanker doing a tag this time around. Jignesh said, “Well guys lets get through our discussion on national pass time (referring to Shanker with his laptop open), we just have 20 min left to reach CST”

Adil ignoring the Jignesh’s comment said “Yes Software, what are your findings, I am excited to share my views”.

By now the people around have also stopped their regular chit chat and were focusing on what Shanker had to state.

Shanker looking up from his laptop said, “We were to find out top three areas where new government need to focus so that India may have next five years of growth and prosperity.”

He continued,  “As per my findings there are two large group within India that, if attended to may lead to rapid growth. These groups are Farmers & employable youth in India”.

Jignesh intervened, “Any numbers? or just thoughts you have?”

Shanker knew this was coming, he said,” India has over 263Mn people involved in agriculture”. He paused a bit, looking at the numbers.

Jignesh was absorbed as soon as numbers were out. he said, “I am all ears, please continue”.

Shanker continued, “With respect to youth, India is all set to become the youngest country in the world by 2020 with the median age of 29 years. There are 430Mn youngsters in India between age of 15-34 years”.

Adil added,”So if we have policies that could take care of people involved in farming, create opportunities to skill the youth and have employment opportunities. We would have given booster to nearly half of India’s population, which shall add to growth.”

Jignesh added, “Wow thats amazing. I think, to create employment, there should be proper impetus on infrastructure & health care services. This way the growth shall plough back social benefit as well.”

Uncle sitting at the seat, said “Bhai, why don’t you guys slow down a bit and relay it again for benefit of all.”

Shanker, now closing his laptop said,” Yes! indeed it is so apparent. three points that new Government should have as their top priority :

– Policies for boosting agricultural, hmm…something like a “next green revolution” for people in agriculture.

– For the youth, skill them and create employment opportunities, in infrastructure & health care sector. “

Adil adjusting his shirt, added,” third point needs to be, to have policies to create innovation and foster entrepreneurship. This would create self fueling employment opportunities.”

People around clapped at the conclusion. Jignesh along with others was beaming too. Taking the opportunity, Shanker said, “Looks like Jignesh has got a clue on which sectors to invest in next five years.”

Jignesh winked and said, “Yes of course, I hit lot of opportunities while traveling in this Mumbai Local.”

There was a loud laugh and people were all happy to have reached the conclusion as the train arrived at the final destination, Mumbai CST.  The three friends went out together followed by others.

Every one alighted and compartment was empty but all who were part of discussion, they  were filled with hope & clarity of thought about their nation.

Hope their “hope” sees light of day.

Mumbai local, with a loud hooter, again moved to ply on the same route.

By ‘dod’ Rangers

‘dod’ Tram Story: The King Makers

Two men traveling in a tram. It is a hot & humid Kolkata summer. They got into a debate. Getting into a debate is not uncommon in this part of India, it is rather an opportunity to flex intellectual muscle, but with ongoing election fever, any debate other than politics, shall raise eyebrows.

Mr. Das, looking out of the window of slow moving tram, said, “fourteen years have gone dod_Tramby and yet the things have not changed.”

Mr. Saha, wiping the sweat on his forehead remarked, “What are you talking about, CPM (Communist Party) is no longer in power, it is DiDi now. (Didi, referred to head of ruling TMC in West Bengal)

Das, smirked, “Saha, let me tell you, National Parties in India are just rubber stamps. They over last 14 years could not make government on their own.”

Saha for a while could not get head or tails of it, but he did not let his Bengali spirit cow down so easily.  He said, “Sauti (true), but you need to have evidence for same.”

Das was now in full spirit, ignoring the beautiful Victoria Memorial and some cool breeze that gushes along on this stretch of tram ride. He straightened and said, “You know for all these years no matter who was at the center, the state parties where the ones who ruled.”

Knowing that he had Saha grappling to grasp, he continued, “Saha as per past stats, state parties have cornered 28% of seats in national elections, which leaves the national parties to no alternative but seek their support to have 51% majority”. He added, “Worst is that this gives state parties unusual say on national issues and corner key portfolios in the central government. Remember, this is without them having any say in any other part of India.”

Saha understood that Das has got a one up on him, but he still probed further, “Do you have the stats handy?”

Das was now enjoying the breeze as tram moved forward on signal turning green. “Yes, of course, I have the proof. Here you go.”

With this Das showed Saha a piece of paper and it read as follows:

Seats won in the year           2009         2004         1999

National Parties                         376              364         369

State Parties                                146              159         158

Unrecognized Parties              12                 15           10

Independents                               09                 05           06

Total                                                 543             543         543

State Party Seats/Total          26%        29%          29%

Saha knew today Das had come prepared. He acknowledged it and added, “Yes, that is what makes Didi in West bengal, Amma in Tamil Nadu and Bhenji in Uttar Pradesh, key to this elections”.

Das remarked, “Sauti (True), if stats have it’s way they have key to 28% of seats and are the kingmakers.” They both laughed together and got ready to get off the tram.

By ‘dod’ Rangers

KRAs of Democracy

A troubled Rajan was going up and down the corridor of his office. He looked tensed with cold sweat flowing down his brow. Well, it is time of the year when employees are appraised by their employers. This anxiety is common, among most of the working class going through during their appraisals.

Rajan, knowing the outcome, was relaxed. He managed an above average increment. On his way home he saw the congested road, polluted air, slight mayhem in local travel. It got him to think. He like many Indians in democracy want to ask the same question. Where is the appraisals of  MPs and MLAs? What are their KRAs (key result area)?

We in this discussion, shall try and lay down what the Member of Parliaments and that of legislative assemblies need to be measured against. Lets explore KRAs of democracy.

Revenue: All MPs need to have target to increase revenue for their area associated with their seat. This like any CEO, needs to have a forward looking and realistic number. Look up the average revenue per seat of India, covered in our earlier discussion on this subject.

Infrastructure Development: Critical in Indian context, every seat needs to show positive development on infra to provide basic needs and infra development for future needs.

Health Care: Here development needs to get quantified on increase in number of beds, availability of speciality treatments and emergency treatment facility.

Education: To track increase in quality teachers, institutions built for basic and higher education and employable students generated out of this process.

Environment Protection: This is a critical aspect which needs to be taken care while we develop the region. The KRA here should be number of green zones created, forest cover restored and protected.

Apart for above five, we also believe that one needs to have mechanism to track fairness of  Administration. This can be measured by tracking reduction in crime rate, redtapism and corruption cases being filed in the courts, year on year to get to a score.

Rajan was pretty happy to understand the KRAs of democracy and that of his elected representatives. But this was short lived as he wanted to understand how does he, a common man, enforce this?

Ideas are Welcome.

By ‘dod’ Rangers

 

Indian Democracy: The Goliath Muscle

At the onset, we would like to thank all readers, we call them patrons, of “dod” blog. Based on the feedback of our patrons, on David & Goliath series, we have done analysis of muscle power of these states. Muscle Power? Yes, here we are talking about the economic muscle. Lets see if we get surprises down here.


We have taken GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of these states for comparison and dipped into databank of Planning commission of India. Visit them at
http://planningcommission.nic.in . To analyze further we are computing another national ratio, National GDP/Seat Ratio, which comes out to be Rs.0.17 Lacs Crs. or 17,500 Crs. This ratio indicates Revenue (GDP), read resource, under management per seat.

 

The Goliaths

GDP 2012-13       (Rs. Lac Crs.)

Seats

GDP/Seat

(Rs. Lac Crs.)

State GDP as % of India’s GDP

Uttar Pradesh

7.69

80

0.09

8.2%

Maharashtra

13.72

48

0.28

15%

Andhra Pradesh

7.45

42

0.17

8%

Bihar

3.08

40

0.07

3%

West Bengal

6.22

42

0.14

6%


Lets analyze the Goliaths, Maharashtra is the top state with maximum GDP contribution (15%) to the nation. Bihar does not figure out in top 5 GDP producing states, while West Bengal barely manages to stay in 5th spot. Followed closely by Gujarat. With an exception of Bihar, top seat contributors also are top GDP produces for India.


Lets analyze the GDP/Seat of Goliaths. Here Maharashtra, and if we are benevolent, Andhra Pradesh, have GDP/Seat ratio higher than India’s average. Thus even though in absolute terms three Goliaths have larger economic muscle, read GDP, but their GDP/Seat ratio is less than national average. We believe that seat allocation is to manage resources of the country better, than Goliaths are not the best performers.

 

Solution for Goliaths, we may sound simplistic, but it is logical that Goliaths need to increase GDP or reduce the number of seats. We believe the former is the option and not the later.


Any guesses on the economic muscle of Davids?

By “dod” Rangers

Need for Voice: The David Story

Time is witness, History stands as testimony to the insatiable hunger of humans to acquire land. No stones are left to be turned. Deals, coercion or fighting wars,  all have been put to use to acquire some more land.


Well, we are not going to talk about wars, but are trying to underline the fact that Land & natural resources accompanied with it are the major assets of a state/country. Their importance with growing population, has increased unabated.


Zoop, lets get to Indian democracy. We are very clear that land and natural resources are major assets and efforts should be made to manage these assets. In a democracy, people’s elected representative manage these resources. This brings us to the magic number, in India every Lok Sabha seat/elected representative on an average covers/manages
5900 square kms. (National Area/Seat ratio)


No debates on 5900, is right or wrong, on second thought, we save the debate for a later date. So for now, consider it to be best.  For effective governance and development of a region we believe that one needs to manage total expanse of area in a state. This would in turn:

– Attract immigration, fueling further development.

– Retain local people in state, absorbing local resources in development.

Thus a lower Area/Seat ratio shall work well for any state. Lets analyze our Davids again and come look up their representation in Lok Sabha.

The David

Current Seat Count

Area Sq Kms

Seats as per National Area/Seat ratio

Diorama

1

21,081

4

Nagaland

1

16,579

3

Sikkim

1

7,096

1

Arunachal Pradesh

2

83,743

14

Meghalaya

2

22,429

4

Total

7

26


We know you would have found this interesting, the David’s have representation of 7 seats but has potential to have 26 seats. Even representation of all states is required in Lok Sabha. Adequate representation of  state shall lead to voices of people in the state being heard at national level. We believe this is must for a democracy & development. Further we need to hear voices of all Davids, don’t we?

By “dod” Rangers

David and Goliath of Indian Democracy

Yes it is a fight over 543 seats to be at the helm of affairs of the largest democracy in world. All political parties in the fray are looking forward to achieve, not this, but half of this to be able to form the government. This would be the first hurdle, and then in a best possible scenario, to get 2/3rd majority, and enable smooth running of government.

So who makes these parties win, of course the states with more the number of seats, the Goliaths. Then there are the Davids, these are states with less than 2 seats apiece. We are considering the top and bottom five in both cases and of course we have kept the union territories aside as they represent one seat each.

S.No.

The Goliath

Seat Count

S.No.

The David

Seat Count

1

Uttar Pradesh

80

29

Mizoram

1

2

Maharashtra

48

28

Nagaland

1

3

Andhra Pradesh

42

27

Sikkim

1

4

Bihar

40

26

Arunachal Pradesh

2

5

West Bengal

42

25

Meghalaya

2

No surprises here with the Goliaths. These states witness a closely contested battle and are well covered by the Political parties and media. Goliaths have a good visibility among the Indian voter population as well.

What about the Davids, they are part of the milieu but do they have enough representation and voice in the system? Well the above table says the story well, in fact more often than not Davids of Indian democracy are not audible in the grand scheme of things. Someone some where said, “David slayed the Goliath”?

By “dod Rangers”