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An 'aam' ode to elections, voters, black-money and mangoes

Last Updated : 20 April 2024, 06:08 IST
Last Updated : 20 April 2024, 06:08 IST

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A very good morning dear reader! It was D-day, which calls for a bit of drumroll, drrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr……Hurrah! We have just survived our first phase of elections! This has been an action-packed week, filled with great jibes, excellent comebacks, and nonstop political entertainment.

For this we must thank our political leaders and give them a huge round of applause. The first act was excellent and it’s going to be a tough one to follow. As 16.63 crore voters across 21 states and Union Territories cast their vote yesterday, drama—in a country like ours—was a surety. Let’s take a look. 

Weathering troubles

This year the backbreaking heat proved to be massive hurdle, one which many voters had trouble overcoming. However, despite the weather proving to be a foe rather than a friend, the total voter turnout was recorded around 62 per cent.

The first prize for the best voter turnout goes to Tripura! 80.17 per cent people came to caste their votes. However, West Bengal was an excellent runner up with 77.57 per cent voters turning up.

On the other hand, the sun may have been too high up in Bihar as they recorded a low voter turn out of 48.50 per cent.

While many were braving the sun, there were others who braved grey skies in Udhampur to exercise their right to vote. The constituency recorded more than 65.08 per cent voting till 5 pm.

Unfortunately, elections in certain parts of West Bengal, Manipur and Chhattisgarh were marred by sporadic incidents of violence. But maybe we can blame these incidences on the weather?

There was a shut down call which led to no one turning up for voting in six districts of Nagaland.

Fight for the spotlight

BJP leaders are not one to shy away from the spotlight. On the contrary, they really know how to make an opportunity count and bedazzle the country with their antics.

Thus, Mr Shah thought it was no time like Phase 1 of elections to file nomination papers from Gandhinagar!

But Amit Shah isn't the only one to file a nomination on an important day! Trying to steal Shah's thunder, a man named Ram Gaikwad, dressed as 'Yamraj' riding a buffalo, also filed his nomination from Maharashtra's Madha.

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Here's hoping Shah doesn't mind sharing the spotlight!

Another man in the spotlight fray is AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi—who has filed nomination for Lok Sabha elections from Hyderabad constituency.

Owaisi, this week, also slammed BJP's Hyderabad Lok Sabha constituency candidate Madhavi Latha after she was seen gesturing shooting an arrow towards a mosque during an election rally.

Aam Adami chief munching on 'aam'? 

In a very peculiar turn of events, the Enforcement Directorate has accused Tihar jail’s most popular resident of munching on mangoes despite having type 2 diabetes.
Arvind Kejriwal who has been seeking the court's permission to consult his doctor due to his fluctuating sugar levels, was accused of enjoying the best that summer has to offer, from fresh mangoes to sweets. The central agency charged that Kejriwal, who is diabetic, was indulging in excesses to seek grounds for medical bail.

On the other hand, AAP's Sanjay Singh expressed his concern for the jailed CM saying anything can happen to him. Singh charged that the BJP's 'modus operandi' can stoop to the level of even killing someone.

The plot thickens as even Atishi Marlena alleged that there was a plot to kill Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

Concern for 'black money'

PM Modi's disdain for black money can be traced all the way back to 2014, when he was vying to replace Manmohan Singh as the prime minister. In a recent interview with the news agency ANI, he talked about his views on the scrapping of electoral bonds.

He said the system of electoral bonds was not perfect but it was better than the previous system.

"In decision-making, we learn and improve. It is very possible to improve in this too. But today we have completely pushed the country towards black money," he said.

"And that is why I say everyone will regret it. When they will think honestly, everyone will regret it."

Data has unveiled that BJP has been the largest benefactor of the scrapped system.

Unhealthy work-life balance

When one talks about sheer commitment to work and an unhealthy work-life balance, Rahul Gandhi's name surely pops up. Recently at a rally in Kerala, he reiterated his commitment to his job by saying, "I wake up and think how can I disturb BJP, RSS today. When I enter the parliament they think he (Rahul) disturbs us 24/7."

Though such commitment to work may give the rest of us immense inferiority complex, we must commend his dedication.

He then put on his detective cap and went on a quest to find the correlation between the BJP and the CPI(M). He said, "I attack BJP 24/7, Kerala CM attacks me 24/7 and says he's against the ideology of BJP. Why does he not get attacked by the government? There is a correlation there."

While Rahul Gandhi was trying to cement his party's position. BJP's Annamalai was doing the very same. He said, "The party will work for a '100 assurances in 500 days'. However, very much like Gandhi, he too was working extra hard, which led to him violating the model code of conduct by campaigning past 10pm.

Who is talking about Article 370?

This week the contentious issue of article 370 was once again brought up in Jammu and Kashmir. Ruffling feathers of the opposition party, Modi said the time is not far when statehood of Jammu and Kashmir will be restored.

Referring to himself in third person, he said, "Modi thinks far ahead. So, what has happened so far is just the trailer. I have to get busy in creating a new and wonderful picture of the new Jammu and Kashmir.”

He further went on to dare the opposition to try and bring back Article 370 in the state.

But if BJP wants to change the status of J&K and even the opposition wants to change the status of J&K. Who is happy with today's status of J&K?

Peculiarly, it is the PDP who has maintained a subtle silence on what they would do like to do with J&K's current status.

Bengal's tryst with violence

The first phase of the Lok Sabha polls saw sproadic violence in Bengal, which was also not bereft of the same during Ram Navami celebrations. After nearly 20 people were injured due to stone pelting during Ram Navami celebrations in Bengal's Murshidabad, CM Mamata Banerjee was quick to lay the blame on the BJP. She even said, “Everything was pre-planned. The DIG (Deputy Inspector General of Police) of Murshidabad was removed a day ahead of Ram Navami so that you (the BJP) can trigger violence."

All about the world

This week, the world is all about tensions between Iran and Israel. It all started with Iran attacking Israel with a barrage of missiles for Israel's supposed attack on their embassy in Damascus.

Israel reported modest damage after the military said it shot down almost all of the more than 300 drones and missiles launched by Iran.

However, as historical precedent would show that Israel is excellent at retaliating. Thus on Friday, the Israeli military struck a military air base near the city of Isfahan, in central Iran. However, Israeli military has declined to comment.

Well that's all folks ! We shall see you next week, same time, same place.

Exit stage left,

DH Newsletters Team

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Published 20 April 2024, 06:08 IST

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