City Express shoots six election-related questions to distinguished Bangaloreans
Personally, which Lok Sabha election has been your most memorable so far? Why?
The elections after Indira Gandhi’s assassination, as a clear mandate was given by the people to Rajiv Gandhi. And in the period that followed, there was a real revolution -- development was reflected through computers, automobiles, the IT sector.
Which election, in your view, has provided the biggest turning point in the history of India?
The same elections, in 1984.
What issues would you want the three MPs from Bangalore to address?
The MPs, as far as I’ve seen, don’t really do much. They simply sit in Parliament, barely even asking questions. Sometimes, they push projects, the execution of which is up to the corporators and MLAs. The MPs have hardly any role. But I would want this to change. I would like the Bangalore MPs to get projects sanctioned to benefit their constituencies and the state. In Bangalore, we need better roads, water and electricity. This is not some village where having no power is justified. This is a city that runs the entire state. And they should also make sure that every child, even slum children, receive proper meals and education.
Do you think the Congress, BJP, JD(S) and AAP have chosen their Bangalore candidates well?
All of them seem to be good people, but I ask, ‘What do you do with good people if they don’t work?’ What’s the point of their saying that they are clean candidates if they can’t deliver?
Since AAP came to power in Delhi, everyone wants to give a chance to good candidates. In Bangalore South, Nandan Nilekani has a good background. He was part of Aadhaar, and he has already proven himself there.
In Bangalore Central, Rizwan Arshad stands a good chance; he has been the Youth Congress president twice now. Even AAP’s candidate V Balakrishnan seems to be good too.
In Bangalore North, I’d go with Sadananda Gowda. His short stint as chief minister was a good time -- people know he’s clean.
Have you ever considered contesting elections? Which politicians do you know personally, and what do you think of their prospects?
No, I’m happier watching these people win and do good work. Politics is not my game. People prefer either to stay away from politicians or seek favours from them, and I’d rather not find myself in that position. I’m better off as a thinker. As for the winning ability of the candidates, I think it’ll be Nilekani in Bangalore South, Rizwan in Central and Sandananda Gowda in North.
What do you foresee in Delhi after the vote count on May 16?
I have a strong feeling that it will be UPA-I that will sit at the centre and not UPA-II, or it might even be the Third Front. There were too many scams this time during UPA’s governance, which Rahul Gandhi tried to clean up. I feel Rahul Gandhi is thinking for the next generation and will make a great prime minister, whenever the Congress comes to power next. But right now, I think there’s a lot he can learn by being a part of the opposition for the next five years.
(As told to Chetana Divya Vasudev)