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In search of vikas in Bihar

Manogya Loiwal
Manogya LoiwalNov 07, 2015 | 14:56

In search of vikas in Bihar

During my almost one-and-half month coverage of the Bihar elections, in a state which I call "Beeharr" because of its bumpy roads, I travelled almost 10,000 kilometres by road.

You might ask, Why?

It was from one district to another in search of what they call "vikas".

From Banka in the first phase of polling to Kishanganj in the last phase, and in search of some enlightenment in Bodh Gaya in the second leg of the polls, I dared a bumpy ride at wee hours in search of issues this election, and the leader of all issues was still "vikas". With chief minister Nitish Kumar alias Sushasan Babu and former CM Laloo Yadav, who served during the tenure that was christened as Jungle Raj by his rivals, this has been an election of undercurrents.

A local in Banka said that many were participating in JD(U) rallies to be in the good books of the ruling front, but would push the button in favour of the central government. Another in Sitamarhi, famously for being the birthplace of Sita and an example of the lack of maintenance in the state, said she was in favour of Nitish Kumar as CM till he joined hands with Lalu Yadav. "He will have to put Bihar in the reverse gear if he comes to power with Lalu Yadav. We don't want that anymore, so I have voted for change."

Intrigued by this definition of "vikas", I ask the girl walking with the woman about voters' sentiments. She explains that the mother-daughter duo had decided to vote together defying the diktat from the male members in the house that they vote for the Mahagathbandhan.

This was just one of the thousand voices I met over a month in villages, towns, cities and tea stalls of Bihar.

This election will be the game changer in national politics and give a push to the NDA in Rajya Sabha if they win in Bihar.

Their presence in Bihar will also work as a catalyst to increasing their vote share in the West Bengal and Assam Assembly Elections scheduled early next year.

Are India's silent voters too in search of "vikas", still? (I presume they are too civilised to enter Bihar and be mobbed)

Be prepared for the 2014 Lok Sabha phenomenon to repeat itself in Bihar come Sunday, for the same party.

 

Last updated: November 07, 2015 | 20:22
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