The US elections and the Obama campaign was closely followed here in India also and the way Obama reached the youth and common people inspired many. Now it seems that the political parties are experimenting with similar campaigning tactics here also in the coming Assembly elections. The youth forms 2/3rd of the total population and the political parties are trying to reach them through the new age media’s including the internet and mobile phones. While the Indian National Congress has produced some promotional videos (link) that are widely promoted over the internet the BJP goes much beyond that through official websites and forums. Through this BJP hopes to reach individual voters.
BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate LK Advani has recently launched his official website ( http://lkadvani.in). The site has an audio introduction by Mr Advani. It also includes a forum which has members close to 1K and covers a variety of topics. BJP’s Delhi Chief Ministerial candidate VK Malhotra has also opened his official website(http://vkmalhotra.in) hoping to prevent Mrs Sheela Dixit becoming the CM for the 3rd consecutive time.
All the parties have special internet units along with their media group that leads their campaigns over the internet. Both the Congress and BJP has their unofficial Orkut communities. While the BJP has almost 18.5K members the Congress has just over 10K members. Interestingly while searching for Congress or BJP at Orkut the communities ‘We hate congress’ and ‘We hate BJP’ also comes among the first few results.
In India these online sentiments can never be taken as that of the aam aadmi. These political parties still has to depend lot on traditional road shows and door to door campaigning to get their support. Hopefully these online promos might bring more youth to the polling station. And who know in the coming Parliament elections we might see some Google ads of these political parties.