The AR-VR touch to polls  

To give an example of the new hi-tech feel, he scans a photograph and immediately you see a video playing on your phone screen. 

Published: 10th October 2020 12:36 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th October 2020 08:30 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: As person-to-person meetings have dwindled in the last eight months and remote possibilities for crowd gathering, what will be the upcoming election canvassing scenario be like? “It’s all going to be an AR-VR (Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality) game,” predicts K Sreepad Sai Nandan, co-founder of Auraaz, an AR-VR startup that has created PoliticAlly, a startup which aims to use nextgen technology along with a thoroughly chalked out strategy to enable political aspirants.

To give an example of the new hi-tech feel, he scans a photograph and immediately you see a video playing on your phone screen. “Now, like the QR codes that take you to a link, you can just scan the photograph of the contestant, and you get to see, hear and watch everything about the person,” he explains. Nandan unwraps the prototype of a VR goggle set and he says, “This set of VR goggles can tell the prospective voter the kind of roads or infrastructure the contesting party can provide, using true-to-life technology.

It’ll show and tell and therefore, the voter can almost experience what is being promised,” he explains. Apparently, the promos and other paraphernalia can be customised with party symbols and contestant’s photographs. A resident of Gandhinagar and a graduate in computer science in 2016  from Muffakham Jah College, he says the idea to use AR-VR in election canvassing struck him in 2018. He met Rahul Gandhi  in New Delhi and later he got the opportunity to work with A Revanth Reddy, Lok Sabha member from Malkajgiri.

“I made a digital magazine and a personalised QR code which went viral during his campaign. Similarly, I worked and designed ground level and digital strategies for two MLAs from Andhra Pradesh and two from Maharashtra who were seeking elections. Fortunately, all of them won. This is when I decided to take this project even more seriously and PoliticAlly was born. My current goal is to work for at least 50 candidates for the upcoming GHMC election and I’m confident there will be a huge demand for innovation during the campaign process due to the Covid-19 crisis,” he says.

“Allagadda had about 3. 5 lakh voters and nearly 70 percent were WhatsApp users. So the touch mag that opened up in one click was a good way for him to reach out to the voter.” How different is this promotion/canvassing going to be? Nandan is keen to venture into the upcoming elections in Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Assam and Kerala which PoliticAlly. His next big project involves sourcing out movie merchandise - from the actor’s watch to the actresses’ brooch - from 35 top e-commerce sites. “This project employs over 40 people per movie. You can imagine employment opportunity such projects give in generating employment,” he says. 

Hyderabadi techie comes up with PolitcAlly, a startup which he says uses next gen tech along with a smart strategy to enable  contestants to reach out to their voters in a more impactful way, especially during the post Covid-19 days

— Manju Latha Kalanidhi  @mkalanidhi


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