A 'One to One' on youth, politics and Karnataka elections

Written by: Keerthi Varma
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Bangalore, May 4: Karnataka has seen lukewarm campaigning by the political parties and the politicians. But the campaign to enroll new voters and bring them to the polling booth has been on a massive scale.

From hoardings to radio and television, they are sending out just one import messages; asking the voters to come out in big numbers and vote on May 5 to elect Karnataka Assembly.

Keerthi Soni spoke to two young members of Bangalore's youth brigade, whose voice is heard all over, and tried to find out their interest in politics and voting.

Radio Jockeys Rakesh and Pijosh of Radio One spoke to OneIndia about Politics, elections and voting.

Watch video interview here:

OneIndia(OI): Do you vote?

Rakesh: Yes of course I do vote and I have contested the elections in the year 2009.

Pijosh: I do absolutely. I have also got my voter's card and I will cast my vote.

OI: Do you trust politicians?

Rakesh: There are some politicians who I do trust and there are some who I don't. I do follow the politicians who do their work with all the rights and powers which is useful for the society.

Pijosh: Yes, I do trust politicians (but) only the one who I have seen working for the society and I know the politicians who come to us after elections and do what they promise to do for us. I trust only a few politicians.

OI: Do youth have role to play in elections?

Rakesh: It's their choice. If the youth wants to be a part of politics, they can be, as an active member, or can also prefer to be a passive members by voting the politicians.

Pijosh: As a youngster, I belong to the social media environment. I'm on radio. So I have a lot of people to reach out to as a youngster. So I think it's my responsibility to ask every citizen to exercise this fundamental right, that is, the right to vote. If I can influence twenty five people, I would say my job is done. Because when I say twenty five people, I need twenty five first-time voters to get them motivated (and) to tell them how it feels to vote. That's what I am looking at.

Q: As celebrity RJs, how can you bring a change in youth's attitude towards politicians and elections?

Rakesh: We RJs are just a personality for the people, we do come across a lot of people who want to change the views about the society. They should participate more if they want to bring a change in the system. Through the exchange of medium on radio, we are doing campaigns, radio activities, feature content that revolves around elections and importance of it to make people to vote. Currently we are taking initiative towards direct approach to show people how it really works and about the entire system procedure and what are the benefits of voting.

Pijosh: The biggest problem most of the youngsters have is the part that we are very much against the politicians. We don't see change. We see so many issues not being resolved. The system is still old because we are a democratic country. For example, if there are rape cases, nothing happens in the form of fast track and that makes the youth very impatient.

Q: How should youth energy and passion be used for civil society?

Rakesh: The powers should be taken in your hand and I don't believe doing public surveys, we believe doing good services, being a civic-conscious person, do door to door campaigning, public meetings only to bring out impressions in people's mind but, contest yourself, get into the system, show your powers and rights can be utilised to bring a change in the system.

Pijosh: Everybody has got their own passion, some are good in talking. When two people make noise that something is bad, the third person is automatically influenced. I think if we are using our passion to make India a better place or improve the kind of people we are, we should step out of the (comfort) zone. Talking about me personally, yes I do. I am 100% passionate about radio and 75% passionate about my country. In fact, the 1st of May, I put a message on Twitter saying, "It's May Day, May Day, get ready to vote".

Q: Do you think women are good politicians? What's your opinion?

Rakesh: There is absolutely no connection with the gender, for all you could know, women are better politician and that doesn't take men down and women up.

Pijosh: Women can be good politician. "Behind every successful man, there is a woman". Women, for me, have the "Go get it" attitude. And so I think women have it in them to be the best politician.

Q: According to you, what are the roles of 'Women Empowerment' in politics?

Rakesh: I think it's an age category who comes into politics and experiences the system. We had a great women like Margret Alwa, Sonia Gandhi and many more women. We have got a good woman politician up there it's all about youth committing. But not people over 60's experiences and powers, who are committing for a long time in the politics, who are almost at the retiring age. We could see younger blood in politics to rule the entire process system. Whether it's women or men, that's immaterial in the society. Both are equal.

Pijosh: Power of speech. When a lady speaks, I think she grabs everybody's attention. Secondly, her power to make sure whatever she said is convincing enough. Women empowerment speech, delivery and making sure that work is done.

OneIndia News.

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