Monday, January 07, 2008
The Delimitation Commission of India and its magic
Are you tired of seeing the same old faces in assembly and parties? Would you go out to vote this time if you had a better choice?
Then please seek early implementation of the report of the delimitation commission (www.delimitation-india.com). It aims to create a new political map of India by redrawing the boundaries of parliament and assembly constituencies.
According to me, delimitation is the biggest thing to happen to this country after freedom and democracy. I have reasons to say so.
Senile politicians who are rusting in their seats will have to look for new constituencies and the voters will have a real choice from among new faces. The commission’s report offers new opportunities to refresh democracy.
Everyone thought it would be implemented from 2009. But that is not so. It may happen anytime. The cabinet committee on political affairs approved it on January 3.
Some leaders with vested interests have been nurturing their constituencies for decades. For example, the Karnataka assembly has two MLAs who have been elected eight times and four who have won six times. They will have developed vested interests in those seats. They will have clearly divided the voters into friends and enemies. The voters may have been reduced to vegetables who vote mechanically every five years as they have no real alternative.
But once the DCI kicks out such leaders from their seats, electoral democracy will be forced to move in new directions. Delimitation will change the very way we think about democracy.
It will also create opportunities for nice guys to enter politics. One of the best political ideologues in the country used to be elected from the Rajya Sabha because his home constituency was that of V P Singh.
This will change. Those who never had a chance to contest for elections till now can represent us from now on.
It will also create more urban MLAs and ensure faster urban development
Bangalore city now has 16 MLAs. It will become 28.
Similar will be case of Gulbarga, Hubli, Mangalore, Belgaum, Mysore and other cities. They will have an MLA for the city and one for its peripheral areas.
Since the interests of voters in these two areas are different, the MLAs will be forced to raise different issues.
This will be very different from each MLA endlessly talking about Garibi Hatao in rural areas. We will have at least some voices in the towns and cities.
The greatest incredibility about incredible India is its democracy. We all should try to better it everyday. If we don’t participate, we lose the right to complain.