Are the Educated Middle Class Indians Illiterate in Politics?

Educated middle class people know fairly well about world. They are aware of the current global affairs. They know the capitals of countries like Spain, France, Italy – they know all the issues around the world. They also know visa guidelines, etc. However, when you ask them about their local constituency, or anything related to politics, they do not know anything.

The chicken or egg story – why are most politicians not trustworthy
Are bad politicians getting elected because there are not enough good candidates and voters do not have other option, or is it because the electorate is not smart enough to enable a good political candidate to win elections. This is the question that is being asked very frequently today.

Most politicians get into politics to exploit the power position for personal benefit
Today, many people are getting into politics to take care of people with business. Some have businesses and join politics to protect their business. This is an open secret. Almost everybody knows this. But today most politicians who come to politics do it so for extracting maximum mileage – making money out of public taxation/tax payers’ money. They practice crony capitalism as well as resort to using government machinery to pursue personal enrichment of themselves and their associates.

Uneducated people are unable to bring in change
While the uneducated and poor citizens participate actively in politics, they cannot reshape the political environment. These citizens are struggling to just survive, and do not have the luxury to focus on reshaping the political environment.

On the other hand, educated people do not want to get involved in politics. It is the educated middle class that has the ability to clean up politics, provided they act. If not who else?
Not connected to real situation
Educated middle class people are disengaged and lead a disconnected life when it comes politics and not as active citizens. They keep on complaining about politicians and their performance; but do not do anything about it. As they refuse to engage in politics, they become increasingly disconnected with the political reality.

Educated middle class can enable positive change
It is important that middle class citizens play an active role in the choosing of a political leadership, since they have unique perspective. They can make an impact, but they don’t want to participate in anything related to politics. They are neither rich nor poor. In addition, they are educated, intelligent and sensible. Hence they can be torch bearers of positive change and nation building.

Middle-class has a disconnect between expectations and their own behavior
The middle-class people expect a lot in commitment from political leaders. Some of them lecture a lot on how politicians should practice politics, define policies and execute them.

They talk of big things, saying politicians need to be dynamic. However, there is a mismatch between their expectations and their behavior. For example on the day of voting:

  • They don’t go to vote if their favorite serial is coming, or if there is a cricket match.
  • Also, if there is a long queue, at poling station, or if there is a slight drizzle, they stay back home.
  • Even if they decide to vote, if someone says why ‘vote’, they get discouraged and do not vote.
  • They are so misguided and alienated that for them not participating in voting is a great enjoyment. They feel proud of not voting.

Well, we are not going to stop here. Then, we will be doing exactly what we are saying middle class should not do. See our next article for what are the things that middle class people need to know and act upon in order to enable a positive change in the political landscape.

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