There is a famous quote from Pericles – “Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you.”
For the Indian youth, distaste in politics emerges at a very early age. The possible reasons for this may be the reckless shouting on TV debates on insignificant issues or the low-level politics being practised in recent times. There have been a lot of connotations to Indian politics over the last decade, primarily the negative ones.
In fact, most of my friends are proud of the fact that they are not interested in politics, or that they hate it, or that they consider only criminals to be participants in politics – and so on. But I highly doubt they are right in their approach.
The core definition of democracy is that it is ‘of the people, by the people and for the people’. The elements of ‘by the people’ and ‘of the people’ tend to go missing if the youth is not involved in politics.
When we say “I hate politics” or “I am not interested in politics”, we are actually showing that we actually don’t know the true meaning of the politics. We just take into account the negative connotations associated with politics and consider it to be the real deal. But the reality is far from this – politics is not just a cunning, evil practice of corrupt people. Although it often becomes synonymous with crookedness, corruption and polarisation, these are not the only things politics yield.
In that context, the bigger question in front of us is: “Are there any positive effects of Politics too?”
Barack Obama rightly said, “What I’m asking for is hard. It’s easier to be cynical; to accept that change isn’t possible, and politics is hopeless, and to believe that our voices and actions don’t matter. But if we give up now, then we forsake a better future.”
We live in a democratic country with millions of people under 25 years of age. Taking them into mainstream politics is not only desirable but an utmost necessity, without which our democratic institution may not survive.
This raises an important question about, “Why is youth involvement necessary for politics?”
The young educated youth has a different perspective and a host of new ideas. I don’t believe they can’t be polarised, brainwashed and coerced into believing and casting their votes in the name of religion, caste, muscle power and freebies. They understand the ideological differences between an educated and an uneducated mind. The youth can reorganise the whole political system with their collective power.
Voting forms an indispensable part of our life and the democracy. It is the only way through which we can exercise control over the government and its agencies. It is your responsibility to vote if you want to enjoy your rights as a citizen of the country. Mere voting is not enough in today’s political scenario. The youth must take part, question, appreciate and critique. There must be an active involvement in politics.
We are putting ourselves at a great disadvantage by not voting – and at an even greater disadvantage by not voting right. With rising economic woes, unemployment, security threats, rampant corruption, it is now the time to make the youth’s voices heard. The answer to all the issues, worries and questions in a democracy indeed lie among us.
Is voting your caste important or casting your vote? I leave it up to you to decide.
Featured image used for representative purposes only.