Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I am a responsible citizen, are u?

Honest Confession- I Vishal Pore voted for the first time in my life. Better late than never!

And for the very first time I felt like a confident, responsible citizen. The feeling is upbeat and rightly goes with a promotion of a leading campaign "Hey, sarkar maza asel" which displays a hapless, suicidal farmer requesting to vote for the right candidate. The hype created by the media with countless, beautiful, creative ads had a huge huge impact on me and finally decided to break my silence and cast my valuable vote. The impact was further accentuated today morning by Anand Mahindra's impressive tweet which reads "Just finished voting. Never fails to make me feel proud and exhilarated". I have never attended any election rallies but my vote went to the candidate who least sms'ed me during wee hours (of-course I am kidding). But yeah, the nuisance was intolerable and could have been avoided for sure. Blame it on technology.

The question as to why I voted so late in my career is worth answering (certainly not a excuse). The seeds of (self) awareness where sown pretty late. In-fact they were never sown when they should have been. I remember we had a terrifying subject called Civics during school days. It talked about municipal corporations, state governments, assemblies, Rajya Sabha, Lok Sabha, prime-ministers age, who's responsibility is to fix the broken street lights and all such things and it surely had all the ingredients necessary. But my feeling is, it was being taught at a very tender age when one has difficulties understanding family relations. And further there was no time for understanding; all thanks to my mugging capabilities (well documented at Mugging a day keeps parents meeting away.) I remember quite vividly that it took 3 hours for me to mug the eligibility of a Lok-Sabha member. Phew! Where was the time to understand what it meant, when all that mattered was marks on mark sheets and report cards (read My Report Cards)? So the blame goes fairly and squarely to my studying habits first and may be a little bit on the 'education at the right age' factor. As i grew up i began to understand what it takes to form a government. How politicians promise a lot and deliver nothing. How they beg prior to election and alter their personality post win. The vibes surrounding the general public were not exactly encouraging and mostly negative. All i heard from colleagues, elders, and friends was, "kay upyog vote karayacha" (what's the use of casting the vote). So certainly I went with the flow and never tried to question it. Suddenly out of no-where my interest grew in politics. Suddenly i was listening to Sonia, Raj, Uddhav, Vilasrao and suddenly I began to understand alliances, the MNS factor the feud between the first cousins and suddenly I decided to become a sincere citizen. After so much of suddenness, I was happy to vote. In-fact, euphoric! May be i felt like a adult for the first time (never mind, i am already a father)

However, the rituals required to get the election card were not so easy. I ran pillar to post to and vice-versa to get myself registered. But, I can tell you with a lot of certainty that India is progressing and progressing quite magnificently. The form to be filled was simple and i cracked it with full marks. This form was provided by jago-rey, so many thanks to them. Next, submitting the form to the election office was not as difficult as I thought it would be (interacting with the government officials, I thought was huge task. Read Encounters with Government officials). They performed way beyond expectations. The only road block was to get myself registered to the correct ward. The absence of the officials there put some pressure on me and had to visit them often. But nevertheless, I am happy that I got myself registered and yes I voted today. The election identity card is yet to make inroads to my house. Let’s hope it would be ready by next election. Till then I am all optimist about it. Cheers!

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