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Lok Sabha Elections 2024 | Surprise results quell chatter on family WhatsApp groups

Many Bengalureans told Metrolife their family groups, mostly cheering for Prime Minister Modi, have been unusually quiet since June 4. Those opposed to Modi, as also those indifferent to politics, aren’t saying much either.
Last Updated : 07 June 2024, 00:53 IST
Last Updated : 07 June 2024, 00:53 IST
Last Updated : 07 June 2024, 00:53 IST
Last Updated : 07 June 2024, 00:53 IST

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The election results took by surprise not just the stock market but also family WhatsApp groups. 

Many Bengalureans told Metrolife their family groups, mostly cheering for Prime Minister Modi, have been unusually quiet since June 4. Those opposed to Modi, as also those indifferent to politics, aren’t saying much either. Some attribute the silence to a ‘deal’ they had made. “Political discussions were turning ugly. People were leaving family and all kinds of WhatsApp groups. So we decided not to discuss politics,” says sustainability professional Rakhi Anil.

Stony silence

Satish (name changed), a resident of south Bengaluru, says there is a “stony silence” on his family WhatsApp groups dominated by pro-Modi members. Messages like ‘If you want temples, pray for Modi’ and ‘Get them 400 votes for a peaceful future’ were common in the last two months.

“They are now displaying their frustration individually. As status, they have posted photos saying sorry to Narendra Modi,” says the 35-year-old. Satish doesn’t share their politics, but he is not gloating either — his mother and cousins often tell him not to ‘provoke’ Modi supporters on the groups. “I get cornered for calling out fake news,” he says. 

Similar scenes prevail in Anju’s (name changed) family groups. She is part of her parents’ and in-laws’ WhatsApp groups, where a majority are fans of the dispensation. The groups haven’t shared even a single post since June 4, she says.

The freelance translator says, “I am happy with the results but I don’t want to rub it in their face, so I am staying silent. My father is a Modi bhakt. He hasn’t called me in 48 hours. Maybe he is annoyed. My dad and sister often clash over Modi and end up not talking for 10-15 days. My mother supports the BJP but she is reasonable.”

Political conversations in Smita Kommini’s family group have ceased. “A couple of relatives have consistently tried to convince us to vote for the BJP. But since the result day, they have been silent on the subject and are posting personal photos and videos instead,” says the technical writer.

An entrepreneur from J P Nagar feels INDIA bloc supporters are staying hushed for their own good. “If you ask them for a PM candidate, they don’t have an answer,” he says.

Analysis and fear

Elsewhere, the results gave way to post-election analysis. Sadakath Ahmed’s family was relieved that India voted “to save the Constitution”.

“We have been discussing how content creators like Dhruv Rathee (a critic of the current government) shaped political views, and how a Dalit candidate like Chandrashekhar Azad won in Uttar Pradesh,” says the entrepreneur.

In one Basavanagudi BJP-aligned group, a family feared the implementation of Citizenship Amendment Act and Uniform Civil Code would now lose steam, Rahul Gandhi jokes would cease, and Modi’s global image would take a hit. They suspect ‘freebies raj’ and caste politics will take centre stage. They lashed out at residents of Ayodhya for not backing the regime that “developed” the town. Others dissected factors that possibly undid the BJP’s campaign — farmers’ protests, Agniveer scheme, and indifference to the plight of women wrestlers.

What humorists said

Election results sent comedians on an overdrive. In a video posted on Instagram, comedian Shyam Rangeela acts as an anxious Narendra Modi who is trying to reach kingmakers Nitish Kumar and Chandrababu Naidu over a call. The person you are trying to reach is not answering the call, comes the automated response. Rangeela tried to contest against Modi from Varanasi but his nomination was rejected. Narundar M also had a take on the Modi government’s reliance on Kumar and Naidu. “Modi’s two teleprompters are replaced by two people’, he wrote in a post. 

Political satirist Akash Banerjee took a potshot at Modi’s claim that he is not a “biological being”. Writer and comedian Varun Grover posted a Hindi poem, in which he uses a camel as a metaphor to talk about
overconfidence and ground reality. In a video, content creator Srishti Dixit pokes fun at people who ‘follow’ politics. NDA stands for National Defence Academy, one says. Non Disclosure Agreement, says another.

Lok Sabha Election 2024 results | Check all constituency results here

Odisha Assembly poll 2024 results| Check constituency results here

Andhra Pradesh Assembly poll 2024 results | Check constituency results here

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Published 07 June 2024, 00:53 IST

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