NaMo tea parties to brew up support

NaMo tea parties to brew up support

Brewing with comments and ideas for the next round of ‘chai’ on International Women’s Day, March 8, Gujarat Chief Minister and BJP prime ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi’s ‘Chai pe Charcha’ site is now inviting people for a discussion on ‘Women Empowerment’.

In an answer to the contemptuous statement by Rajya Sabha MP Mani Shankar Aiyer deriding Modi’s humble, tea-selling background, Narendra Modi launched an election campaign ‘Chai pe Charcha’ on ‘Good Governance’ on February 12. Connecting a 1,000 tea-stalls in 300 cities over a cup of tea, comes across as an expansive plan. Since this innovative campaign is being pegged as a means to connect to voters, especially the young ones who are technologically savvy, Metrolife attempts to gauge the mood and interest of the youth and their perspective on election campaigns that have moved from door-to-door to social media, and now to multiple media platforms at once.

Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad’s national secretary Rohit Chahal, believes, “Nothing can surpass the effectiveness of door-to-door campaigning. But a prime ministerial candidate cannot personally go to every street and corner of the country. Thus, video conferencing across different platforms allows Modiji to listen to people’s concerns and answer their queries.” He emphatically adds, “It’s a powerful reply to the dynastic rulers of this country who believe a chaiwallah cannot become PM.”

Addressing his first ‘Chai pe Charcha’ from Ahmedabad, Modi called the tea stalls of the country, ‘a footpath parliament’, where topics of discussion vary from stories of villages to the situation in Israel. Concurring with this notion, a student of BA in English at PGDAV college, Ankur says, “Though I have no inclination towards Modi or his style of politics, I do think ‘Chai pe Charcha’ gives him an advantage as he connects with the masses at once. I might want to attend the next charcha in the city to see if the participants are merely staged or they are there for real.” His friend Bhoomi rejects the concept saying, “It sounds more like a publicity campaign than an election campaign.”

Karishma Thakur, general secretary of Delhi University Students Union, says, “Their chai campaign may have turned successful but one cannot imagine NaMo as a youth leader. If he really had an impact on the youth, then post his speech in Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) last year, ABVP should have won all the seats in the student election. But there are no representatives of ABVP on the SRCC panel, the students rejected them and his ideology in the university’s elections.”

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