Hitting the trail


  • Share via facebook
  • Tweet this
  • Bookmark and Share
Even in 2014, election rallies remain a mainstay of Indian campaigning, particularly in regional areas.

Even in 2014, election rallies remain a mainstay of Indian campaigning, particularly in regional areas.

The dust is still settling and the helicopter rotor blade continues at rapid speed, but Digvijaya Singh and his 27-year-old son Jaivardhan are already on the ground with their arms in the air, waving to the throng of people eagerly awaiting their arrival at Bhilwaria, a rural village of about 2,000 people.

The father-and-son political duo are quickly whisked into a four-wheel drive but they continue to reach out to the villagers through their windows and several times order the driver to stop so they can receive the blessings of men and women now lined on the side of the dirt road.

Security personnel softly push the people away with bamboo sticks. The Singhs are on a tight schedule, each with up to 10 villages – spread over hundreds of kilometres - to visit today.

While neither of them are running in this election, their respective positions in the national upper house and state assembly mean they not only have party obligations to campaign but their presence can be enormously influential on votes.

Digvijaya is a general secretary of the incumbent Indian National Congress party’s central decision-making body and the longest- serving chief minister of Madhya Pradesh (1993-2003), so he is particularly well received.

And in a country where politics is practically ruled by dynasties, Jaivardhan is immediately popular.

At the town centre at least 1,000 men, women and older teens are already waiting, squatting on the dirt floor under a light canopy.

Before the crowd has time to settle into place, Jaivardhan, who was only elected to the state assembly as the member for Raghogarh in November, as the youngest ever MP, leaps to centre stage and immediately begins a passionate appeal to voters.

Article continued on next page...

Related:
Join the Discussion

Disclaimer:The view expressed here by our readers are not necessarily shared by Arabian Business, its employees, sponsors or its advertisers.

Please post responsibly. Commenter Rules

  • No comments yet, be the first!

Enter the words above: Enter the numbers you hear:

All comments are subject to approval before appearing

Further reading

Features & Analysis
Saudi Arabia, Kuwait shared zone tensions underlie oilfield closure

Saudi Arabia, Kuwait shared zone tensions underlie oilfield closure

Crude output from jointly-run offshore Khafji oilfield has been...

The billion dollar war

The billion dollar war

As US president Barack Obama seeks to slash the Pentagon’s budget...

End of Gaza war doesn't translate into peace

End of Gaza war doesn't translate into peace

A week after the guns fell silent in the Gaza war, Israel and...

Most Discussed