Sunday, March 22, 2009

Friends of BJP, Bangalore edition

It was a first of sorts, I realized as I sat through the Friends of BJP meeting in Bangalore yesterday. In my whatever years of existence, all I had ever seen was netas on TV, netas whizzing by in cars and waving to the hoi polloi - not that I ever had the misfortune of having to wait by the roadside to wave to some random nata. I realized that this was my first ever political gathering over all these years. And it started and ended reasonably well on time - which is important for people like us.

After the tamasha type campaigns were done away with, there was "exposure" to elections to people like us. Elections was something we read about or saw on TV - in the sense, nobody ever came to solicit our votes - after all, we are the apathetic middle class. But, many, including me, were the kinds who have never missed a chance to vote. But the parties did not care - because PLU were far too few and scattered. Until now.

With delimitation on the one hand and the worsening security attacks on the other (plus regular infrastructure, etc.), and their own instinct to participate in the democratic process, the middle class is becoming more and more important. And the BJP has moved first here. (On a side note, I got to meet Rajesh Jain - whose superb technology blog Emergic was really my first introduction to the blogosphere.)

While the Congress expects us to fall for the younger scions charms (arent photos inspiring enough to vote?) and other regional parties too busy with their families to focus on the middle class - the BJP is trying to reach out to this class. More such meetings would be needed to drag this class into participating in the process. I also think, that this is the future of political meetings - which means the neta has to be erudite and be able to connect with an audience of this nature.


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