Parties can write on walls in villages with owners’ permission

Despite the advent of eye-catching flex boards, digital banners, and the tech-savvy politicians taking to electronic campaigning, wall-writings, it appears, continue to impress rural voters. Poll graffiti on public walls in urban limits have almost become a thing of the past, thanks to the strict implementation of Election Commission norms.

The days when eye-catching graffiti on roadside walls and buildings attracted the attention of passers-by are gone. Politicians are not happy with the restriction as they say the graffiti used to create substantial impact among voters, delivering the intended message precisely.

A saving grace for the politicians is that the graffiti still holds relevance in the villages where it continues to be a major attraction. For, the Election Commission norms permit political parties to make wall writings in rural parts on private buildings with the permission of their owners.

Workers of political parties recall the past when they used to enthusiastically reserve private walls in their villages and neighbourhood localities to display the portraits and names of candidates and party symbols well before the start of the nomination process.

The trend continues in villages even now, says Vaidhyanathan, a retired government servant of Tiruchi city. Writings with soda lime have given way to inscriptions with glossy paint.

Candidates believe that graffiti in rural areas is bound to enhance their winning chances on more than one count. They believe the semi-literate section of people in the villages could be won over with visually appealing portraits and writings. Political parties always try to out do each other with catchy slogans, punch lines, quotes, and cartoons and painted the pictures of the leaders with great detail .

They used to have exclusive teams of their own for coining catchy slogans and displaying the graffiti. New parties too always prefer symbols which could be painted on the walls with much ease.