Recently by-elections were held in Jamshedpur lok shabha constituency. I was in the area during those days, and made notes of some intriguing and disturbing facts about the fiasco. However, if not the process, the product turned out to be good.
It all started when Arjun Munda jumped out of his lok sabha seat to become the Chief Minister of Jharkhand. This led to the out-of-the-loop by-elections in Jamshedpur. Mr. Munda must have known how much of taxpayer’s money gets wasted in order to organize polls. Schools, colleges and banks were shut. Who was responsible? Democracy. That stuff the dreams are made of.
Despite Maoists’ call for poll boycott, about 50 percent voters cast their franchise. The disturbing part was the fact that only 35% voters turned out in urban areas. This was low compared to the near 65% turnout in rural areas. This has become the trend in most polls these days. However, with a huge margin of over 1.4 lakh votes, the winner of the by-elections was Dr Ajay Kumar, who was probably the best candidate and had the cleanest profile among the candidates.
Dr Kumar is a former IPS from Jamshedpur. In a short time he was successful in controlling and decreasing the crime rate in Jamshedpur, the then mafia ruled city. Later, he left the police service and joined Tata Motors as a senior executive. He belongs to the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha party (founded by Babulal Marandi). I congratulate Dr Kumar in his successful transition from Khadi to Khaki. If not the process, I will consider the product a great triumph of Indian democracy.