Who will win UP polls, why: This book can help you figure it out

Veteran journalist Abhigyan Prakash’s ‘From Lucknow to Lutyens’ tells a fascinating story of India’s political bellwether state

GN Bureau | March 7, 2022


#journalism   #politics   #Uttar Pradesh   #elections  
A scene from one of home minister Amit Shah`s election rallies in Uttar Pradesh (Photo courtesy: bjp.org)
A scene from one of home minister Amit Shah`s election rallies in Uttar Pradesh (Photo courtesy: bjp.org)

From Lucknow to Lutyens: The Power and Plight of Uttar Pradesh
By Abhigyan Prakash
HarperCollins, 272 pages, Rs 599

With the final phase of voting on Monday, UP elections conclude and with it – in the parlance of journalism – the most important event since 2019 and before 2024. Actually, every assembly election in Uttar Pradesh is considered the most important political event between two Lok Sabha elections.

A disproportionate number of India’s prime minister have come from that state, though the influence it wields on national political discourse is certainly not disproportionate to the number of MPs it sends to the Lok Sabha.  In any case, with a population that would make it the fifth most populated in the world if it were a country, UP elections should seen as an event of global importance.

But deciphering the undercurrents, who is winning where why, is a complicated exercise. It might be somewhat obvious for the people of the state, who must have been tirelessly discussing the fate of this or that party for months now. It is not obvious for outsiders. Understanding UP could be very much rocket science. There are castes and communities and their implicit party preferences. The numbers might be static but their political leanings can never be the same – otherwise every poll would throw up broadly the same results.

And caste cannot be the sole factor. There are roti-kapada-makan issues, not to mention the BSP – bijli, sadak, pani. This time, law and order is as much an issue as the role of religion in public sphere. The public health infrastructure might be point on the mind of the voter, amid the pandemic.  
 
More importantly, an issue cannot be seen in the present light alone; there is always a back story. Abhigyan Prakash, a veteran TV journalist, in his ‘From Lucknow to Lutyens’ narrates that overarching back story of the state. His question is less related to the immediateness of elections, and more to the long-term conundrum: How come a state with so much political heft has consistently failed, right since independence, to achieve its potential in economic and developmental terms?

Still, when we all sit before the TV sets and computer screens on March 10, this book could be a very helpful resource in making sense of it all.

Comments

 

Other News

What makes Sundargarh the cradle of hockey in India

Neha Lakra, 20, doesn’t forget to practise hockey, at least for four hours, every day. Whether at home or at the Panposh sports hostel in Rourkela where she is training under the guidance of coaches, her routine doesn’t change. “I can’t sleep unless I have worked on the ground,&rdqu

Where the true sadhana of Vedanta is to be found

Somewhere Among the Stars: Reflections of a Mystic By Adi Varuni Kali/BluOne Ink, 282 pages, Rs 395 Decades ago, when an unknown N

India celebrates National Voters’ Day

The 13th National Voters’ Day was celebrated across the country Wednesday with president Droupadi Murmu gracing the national event held here. Kiren Rijiju, union minister for law & justice, was the guest of honour. The chief election commissioner, Rajiv Kumar, election commissioners Anup Chandra

INS Vagir to give fillip to Navy: Admiral Hari Kumar

The Indian Navy commissioned its fifth stealth Scorpene class Submarine INS Vagir on Monday at the Naval Dockyard, Mumbai in the presence of Admiral R Hari Kumar, Chief of the Naval Staff. Vagir was launched on November 12, 2020, under Project 75 (P75) and post completion of sea trials it w

Uddhav joins hands with Prakash Ambedkar ahead of BMC polls

Ahead of the Mumbai civic polls, former Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday announced an alliance with Prakash Ambedkar`s Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA). Addressing a joint press conference, Thackeray said their grandfathers, Keshav Thackeray and Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, were conte

How women leaders enable collective action at local level

Ela R. Bhatt, the founder of SEWA, once said, “There is ample proof to demonstrate that women can and do build strong and vital organizations around issues that relate to them, and find viable solutions out of their own experiences.” Women Leadership Schools (WLSs) promoted by Se

Visionary Talk: Amitabh Gupta, Pune Police Commissioner with Kailashnath Adhikari, MD, Governance Now



Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter