Indian-origin Canadian PM contender reaches out to 'ignored' youths via social media

With opinion polls suggesting a possible minority government in Canada, young voters are expected to play a vital role in the formation of the next government.

Published: 21st October 2019 05:42 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st October 2019 05:42 PM   |  A+A-

Jagmeet Singh

Jagmeet Singh. (Photo | Twitter)


OTTAWA: Indian-origin Canadian prime ministerial contender Jagmeet Singh has used social media to reach out to young voters in Monday's general election, who he said "often feel ignored" by decision-makers.

With opinion polls suggesting a possible minority government in Canada, young voters are expected to play a vital role in the formation of the next government.

The 40-year-old New Democratic Party (NPD) leader said social media is a "cool way" to share his campaign message, the Canadian Press reported on Monday.

ALSO READ: Why India won’t be rooting for Jagmeet Singh in the Canadian elections

Singh said young voters have told him they "often feel ignored by political parties and by government decision-makers".

"One of the things I've realised throughout the campaign and throughout my life is that you've got to speak to people where they are.

Wherever they are, if you can speak to them and find them and you have a message that can actually make their life better, then use that platform," Singh was quoted as saying by the report.

Aiming at wooing youths, Singh recently posted two 15-second video on TikTok, highlighting his campaign's key messages with rap music, which instantly went viral.

The videos were collectively viewed over three million times, the report said.

Similarly, he is using Instagram as part of his poll campaign.

"My girl, RiRi, follows me," Singh said, referring to the 31-year-old international pop star Rihanna.

Four years ago, turnout from the youngest cohort of voters was up 12 per cent from the 2011 federal election.

Many of these new, young voters cast their ballots for Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, and the youth vote was credited with giving the party its majority government, the report said.

However, after winning in a landslide victory in 2015, the 47-year-old Trudeau's image has recently been tainted by allegations of racism after the emergence of old photographs of him in blackface make-up during a school event nearly two decades ago.

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