India is in full election mode. Over next few weeks, there would be elections held to elect new federal Government. As expected political parties are now busy with election campaign. Every political party is trying to maximise its vote share.
Interesting thing is, each party claims to be crusader for a certain segment of population. For example, certain party claims to be party for lower caste population. Left parties have a very small vote share. Everybody is claiming to be champion of women’s rights. Usual suspects are also doing rounds for “minority votes”.
During this entire process, there are 2 segments (or 1 segment and 1 sub segment of that segment) of population that are totally neglected by all parties. That segment is salaried middle class. Typically world over, middle class is the most neglected voter. Rich (I am not even talking about top 1% of top 1%) are not that impacted in terms of who forms the government. Poor are bit insulated as well due to welfare schemes. As a result, middle class is most impacted. They pay taxes which are used to fund welfare programs. Interesting thing in India is, the personal income tax penetration is very low. A very small people pay income tax. In return, all they demand is better infrastructure and better condition of living. Yet for most part, these demands seem to get ignored or fall on deaf ears.
If you divide middle class further to analyse this impact further, brunt of impact is taken by middle class men. To an extent women get covered under “champions of women’s right”. But there is literally and figuratively nobody who considers middle class men as their vote bank. He is punching bag for political parties. Neglected, yet everybody wants his vote.
For all practical purposes Prime Minister Modi is a single man. Similarly Congress President Rahul Gandhi is single as well. So when Arvind Kejriwal had joined politics about 5 years ago I had great expectations from him as he was a married man. He was getting lot of attention during 2014 elections. But since then his actions and/or lack of action has left many people disappointed. So in 2019 elections there is a void. We really don’t have a leader who can understand pain of married middle class men. Only time would tell when this void would get filled. Till then all we can do is have a Pizza Party…