Come, let us march to the polling booths tomorrow
Abracadabra By K. B. Ganapathy, Columns, Top Stories

Come, let us march to the polling booths tomorrow

April 25, 2024

Lok Sabha Election- 2024 is here. Tomorrow, April 26, from 7 am to 6 pm. Come, let us walk to the polling booths. Let us give our secret vote to elect our political representative who, we believe, deserves to represent us. That is your service to the country. That is your duty, dharma-karma, to your country as a citizen. It is your responsibility to protect Democracy and the Constitution by casting your vote.

During this election campaign we have heard the Cassandras who were bemoaning that the country’s Democracy is under assault and the Constitution is under threat of change. We have heard this prophets of doom even when we got the freedom. Winston Churchill had famously prophesied that power would go to the wrong hands and “all Indian leaders will be of low calibre & men of straw.” Come let us prove him wrong in 2024 too as we did since independence.

Once in five years you should set aside this day of national importance, the voting day, for the country. And you have to go to the polling station regardless of rain, sun or any other small problem. You must vote even though NOT voting is not illegal. You must drop the absurd anti-democratic rhetoric of individual liberty either to vote or not to. Patriotism should be cherished. It is not right to take advantage of voting not being compulsory and leave the place on a picnic or excursion for fun and entertainment. It tantamounts to dereliction of a democratic duty on your part.

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Dr. C.N. Manjunath, former Director of Jayadeva Hospital, has explained the imperative of going to polling booths in a witty manner. According to him, we do three types of walking. The first is Morning Walk, self-motivated to take care of our health. Second is Warning Walk, based on the advice of the doctor and the third one is Darling Walk, the act of going together with one’s wife or husband for amusement. Dr. Manjunath’s appeal is that the voter should take a Darling Walk to the polling booth tomorrow (26.4.2024) and cast his vote. Just as we listen to our doctors when concerned about our health, so we citizens should listen to our Constitutional pundits and cast our vote for the good health of our country,  Democracy.

Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States and the author of the Declaration of Independence, said: There are certain inalienable rights that no man can surrender. They are — right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.

We have earned this right after a 1,000-year struggle. Our Constitution is the repository of these inalienable rights. But if we want to preserve it, protect it, make it part of our lives, we must actively participate in our Parliamentary Election and vote responsibly.

Today, a large number of our voters may not be aware of the turmoil and trauma our country passed through 49 years ago in 1975 when our Constitutional rights were suspended and an Emergency was declared in the country.

However, we came out of that dark period of our independent India from 1975 to 1977. I remind our young voters that we could come out of that Emergency, loss of our inalienable divine rights Thomas Jefferson spoke of, in 1977 because a very large number of we the people of India together fought the tyranny by participating in the Parliamentary Election of 1977. Otherwise tyranny would have continued.

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It is germane here to mention of a very significant book by Barbara Tuchman titled “The March of Folly” that defines the folly of a nation, say its leaders, as “pursuit of policy contrary to self-interest.” It is here the people of the country as voters should step in by casting their vote and selecting right persons as their representatives in the Parliament.

Let me also recall the words of Solomon’s Wisdom told by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar after framing of the Constitution of India on 26th January 1950: “If hereafter things go wrong, we will have nobody to blame except ourselves.” Therefore, let us take a Patriotic Walk or a Darling Walk to the polling booth tomorrow and pay our debt to our motherland by casting our vote so that our country will be in safe hands so also We the People of India, that is Bharat.

Last word: Tomorrow we take the road to the polling booth. The only road we have to make our country great is the road to the polling booth.

Jai Bharat

e-mail: [email protected]

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