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Heavy Turn Out - Whose Fate Will It Impact?

Amaravati: “Elections are not to choose the best candidate, but the option to elect the best of the worst.”

The state of Andhra Pradesh witnessed a huge turn of voting percentage with the voters standing in lines till mid-night with patience amidst slow process and several hiccups like stray incidents of  Law and Order.

With about 77% polling, leaders of both the TDP and YSRCP expressed confidence of forming the next government in the state.

While CBN, though appeared concerned, seemed optimistic of people giving him a massive mandate for another term, his nemesis, YS Jagan, was also equally sure of a landslide victory.

Despite the claims of both the leaders, the moot questions that are being pondered over are:

Whose fate will the heavy turn impact? ……

…….And what does the higher turnout mean?

If past experiences of electoral history to be taken as a yardstick to  seek an answer, then, a higher turnout might be a bad news for the ruling TDP.

Data of past elections indicate that opposition would have a greater chance of winning, in elections where voters turned out in huge numbers.

Such a scenario is always a sign of trouble for the incumbent party.

Over the years, a widely-held belief has taken root among election analysts that an increase in voter turnout is innately bad news for incumbents.

While the origins of this received wisdom are unclear, it is repeated ad nauseam nearly every election cycle.

Advocates of this view contest that an increase in voter turnout is a signal that an angry electorate is in the mood for change.

Rising turnout is, therefore, an early indicator of trouble for the sitting government.

However, not everyone believes that this received wisdom reflects facts on the ground.

No doubt, such a differed opinion on voter turnout would always project an ambiguous picture.

Therefore, it would be appropriate to seek an answer more from the specific context at hand than the voter turnout.

The specific context at which the AP went for voting centered on the strategies adapted and the electoral narrative built thereupon by both CBN and YS Jagan with Pawan Kalyan acting more as a spoiler than a serious contender.

YS Jagan, the nemesis of CBN, had wittingly or unwittingly committed two cardinal mistakes when everything appeared was going in his favour only to be cornered and trapped by his opponents that seemed to have in tacit collaboration and electoral understanding.

The cardinal mistake was his reaching a tacit understanding with the once upon a time bitter rival KCR, ‘in principle” to co-ordinate with each other as part of a ‘KCR’s “Return Gift Politics” to help oust CBN from the power.

His tacit understanding with KCR, a symbol of “Anti-Andhra” interests, has given enough ammunition for both CBN and Pawan Kalyan to gain much needed reason to turn the electoral narrative against him.

Analysts feel that by shaking hands with KCR, who carries a negative perception among the people of AP, Jagan has given CBN a much needed breathing space to turn the tables on him with the help of Pawan Kalyan, his erstwhile cheerleader and sidekick.

Thus, his nexus with KCR was a poor strategy, which helped CBN to go to the voters with propaganda of fear of “anti-Andhra’ forces from both neighboring state of Telangana form the Center and the Rayalaseema hired goons within.

Jagan in committing such a huge blunder helped CBN to fight the battle on his terms with the “Andhra Pride” as a weapon.

It helped CBN to successfully built campaign around Andhra self-respect and the imminent danger to the interests of Andhras from anti-Andhra forces from outside and Rayalaseema hired goons from within.

While, CBN was desperately convincing the voter with Propaganda of fear, the instances of alleged misuse of f IT, CBI, ED and the Election Commission of India etc., had added strength to his propaganda.

The alleged misuse of the said agencies gave CBN a chance to project himself as the “victim” of Modi, KCR and Jagan Trio being an evil triumvirate out to destroy him and as threats to the interests of the Andhras.

In the backdrop of such narrative, the polling day witnessed interesting developments, wherein, YSRCP appeared to be engaged in preventing a massive turnout.

The efforts to cancel all buses from Telangana with the help of TRS government, malfunctioning of EVMs, delay in starting the voting at many booths etc., point towards such an effort from YSRCP.

Many voters were seen returning homes without casting vote fearing violence at many places across the state.

The voting day scenario and chaos gave another chance to CBN to appeal to the voters to come back and vote in massive numbers to save the democracy.

By afternoon, regardless of his appeal, a massive turn of women and the senior citizens was witnessed across the state reflecting that all the efforts to prevent these sections boomeranged on the perpetrators.

Thus, the massive turnout amidst chaotic scenario could be seen as a determination of the voters, particularly the women and the senior citizens that they want send a fitting message….

…But, to whom is a big puzzle.
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