Kolkata: Vote: Designing Democracy or just a day away from work? Well, plunging into this question, the most eventful day in the City of Joy has arrived. The Kolkata Municipal Corporation Elections started since 7 am in the morning. Since the very beginning of the day, a wide range of incidents have already taken place in the city. Amidst these, from the long queues at the polling booths, verbal violence, misdirected ‘dadagiri’, firing of bullets, bombings- to the first smile in the faces of Generation X after casting their first vote, have all been a part of the wide canvas of the ‘Mahanagar’.
In contrast to all the chaos and commotion in the wards, the expanse of Kolkata is as blank and silent as it can get. The roads are empty, buses are scarce in number, and office-goers are perched in their humble abodes, treating this crucial day more like a public holiday or the usual bandhs that our city is known to organize very often for reasons way beyond the understanding of a person who loves to take the street only to play cricket in the holidays or to walk with one’s girlfriend hand in hand along some romantic alleys of the city.
The most crowded and jam-packed areas like Park Circus 7 point, Park Street, Hazra, Karunamoyee, Beleghata, Shyambazar are now barren areas with hardly any movement. The day is being treated like more of a joyous day with the family than a day to exercise and execute democracy.
Being a part of the largest democracy on the globe, the population seems to be very laid back and unaware of the importance that this day holds. Naps and elaborate lunches seem to be the itinerary of the common man today.
But let us not forget that these people are the ones who express their concern of how incompetent the candidate is and how their needs are not being catered to. The concept of providing criticism is more appealing to them than performing their duty as responsible citizens.
However, after everything said and done, is it also wise to step out and resume the normal course of life with all the disorder, disturbance and ferocity going on in the city? Is it really a hindrance or a cover?