By Raza Hasnain Naqvi
All of us who have touched the voting age some time back or further, remember the feeling when we had voted for the first time.
There is a sense of anticipation as we stand in line with our voter ID card in hand. The line moves forward and we get your finger inked. Finally, there we are standing in front of the ballot all set to exercise that most fundamental, basic and adult right that we possess – our vote.
Who you vote for in an election, decides the destiny of that candidate. Whether Independent or party-supported, each candidate tries desperately to get your vote.
Let me shed some light on five ways that voters get impressed enough, to cast their vote in the ballot box or press the blue button next to the election symbol on the electronic voting machine.
1. Party policies: If the voter has to be impressed, then the party needs to ensure that the party manifesto and promises make sense. If the promises define the concerns of the constituency voter and highlight the problems well, the voter knows that the party has its pulse.
2. Party publicity: What about the publicity machine of the party? Yes, it does matter. How the party promotes itself and attempts to connect with the voter, both online and offline in today’s Internet age is crucial. If the party can talk to the voter directly and even get voter feedback, then voter understands that someone is listening. When the party’s publicity measures also find echo in media outlets, the voter begins to remember the party’s election symbol.
3. Party image: The perception of a particular political party adds much to a party’s image. The party can engage professionals to spruce up its image before the voter, but the voter tends to read beyond the image. He has a certain perception of the party and is keen to know whether the party will stick to that perception or veer away from it. So, at this point, either the voter begins to align with the perception of the party or keeps away, despite any image enhancements that may have been done with an eye to win the vote.
4. Candidate credential: If the candidate has right credentials, background, proper education and even some kind of degrees and certificates, the voter does take note of the fact. Anything less than concrete credentials, would mean a doubt in the mind of the voter, especially one, who is not influenced by caste bias. Where caste doesn’t matter, the discerning voter reads credentials.
5. Candidate expression: How a candidate expresses himself and puts forward his views, the party’s policies and builds up his convincing argument for the vote, matters much to the voter. A non-communicative candidate can only interact successfully withthe invisible voter. The visible voter wants to hear the speech of the candidate, his choice of words and the tone and tenor of his speech to make an estimate of the quality of the candidate.
Parting Question: When seeking votes, would you prefer to impress the voter, or pay attention to caste equations to ensure sufficient votes for you during polling?
Raza likes to share snippets of his life experiences and observations through his writings. This blogpost is the Day-12 post of his 15-day trial of daily blogging. Besides his social media footprints on twitter, facebook, instagram and Google+, he can also be reached on his email: bylineraza[at]gmail[dot]com
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