But remain buoyant with hope of turning the tide in future

  • Of the total 3,900 votes in 14 wards, Loksatta-backed candidates win 250 in all
  • Succeed in exposing the chinks in the system
  • Educated voters grasped the policy of yet-to-be launched Loksatta party, says organisation leader

    CHARLAPALLY (NALGONDA DT): Though the five youngsters were fully aware of the fact that it is not easy to swim against the tide, they tried to test the electoral waters. As expected, they lost the election to their "mighty" rivals but they won the hearts of people with their unflinching commitment to democratic values.

    All the five youths who had contested for gram panchayat elections with the support of the Lok Satta in Charlapally village, had to endure a humiliating defeat. Of the total 3,900 votes in 14 wards, the Lok Satta candidates together won 250 votes with Chowdoju Sreenivasa Chary, a rural medical practitioner, of the sixth ward scoring the highest of 22 votes.

    However, the defeat has not dampened their spirit. "We don't want to blame gullible people for our defeat but we blame it on the unscrupulous politicians, who are corrupting the system and clinching power by hook or crook," Mr.Chary said.

    Make a minute dent

    Local Lok Satta activists, who wanted to experiment much before the Lok Satta's founder Jayaprakash Narayan made open his mind on the formation of a political party, argue that bagging 250-odd votes was not an easy task given the money and muscle power of their opponents.

    "We have succeeded in exposing the chinks in the system and we strongly feel that we have fair chances to usher in new political culture among the masses," Medi Narasimha, district joint secretary of the organisation, told The Hindu . "Educated voters welcome us but we have to work very hard to win the hearts of illiterate who are being won over by currency notes and liquor bottles.

    If we can convince them on the dangers involved in succumbing to being bribed by power-mongering politicians, the voters will definitely support us," Mr.Narasimha, the brain behind this electoral experiment, observed.

    Lok Satta's state secretary T.L. Narasimha Rao is also happy with the number of votes the five candidates were able to muster.

    "It is clear that a sizeable number of educated voters grasped our ideology and there is a scope for clean politics in the system," he said.