BENGALURU: Despite all the political noise and excitement surrounding the elections, a section of Bengalureans simply choose to stay indifferent. Anger against the political parties, the effort not take to procure a voter ID card or plain unwillingness to take a few hours off a precious Second Saturday holiday: the reasons to not exercise one’s franchise on May 12 are aplenty.
Savitra Rangarajan, employed in a multinational firm says, “I do not want to vote for the JD(S), BJP or Congress. I have the option of NOTA. But unless there is a legislation that says that if a constituency has a high number of NOTAs, the election there will be declared null and the governor or an administrator will be made to rule the constituency, even my NOTA vote will go waste.”Most of the disinterested voters Express spoke to have not even bothered to procure a voter ID card.
Central government employee B G Renuka says, “I have just completed a year in Bengaluru. It does not make sense for me to take the effort of readying a voter ID card. If I end up in Bilaspur next year, then I will have to ready a voter ID card for that state.”G N Lokesh, employed in another multinational firm, insists he will vote. “I will press the NOTA button.” Atul Bohra, employed as a security guard in Karmelaram says, “Despite one of the houseowners here helping me apply for the voter card, I have not got it”
Asked to explain this apathy, political analyst N K Mohan Ram lays the blame for it on affluence and influence. “When you have sufficient money, a corporator or MLA will come to your doorstep, have tea with you and solve your problems. Why will an affluent person bother about which party comes to power. Take an area like Malleswaram, for example. With most residents here having children settled abroad and highly valued properties here, discussions are around dollars and stock markets. Why will they bother about local issues?”