2014 General Election India & 2013 General Election Pakistan: The similarities!

In India, the election fever is in full swing these days. All the major political parties are busy, day and night, with their election campaigns. Amid all this rush, we see a blame game being played – something which is very common in any country’s politics. As they say, it is easy to point out others’ mistakes than finding your own faults. And these political parties seem to follow this idea vehemently.

Almost a year ago, the same situation was present here, in Pakistan, during the 2013 general election proceedings. We had the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) as the major political parties contesting the elections. In India, the major parties contesting the 2014 general elections are the Indian National Congress (INC), the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) and the newly emerged Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
So what are the similarities between the political scenarios of the two countries? My observations, as a layperson, are as follows:

Congress versus PPP
The INC, like the PPP, is about to complete its five years of power. As PPP was generally viewed as a failed government that did not work for the betterment of the masses, same is the case with the INC; a considerable segment of the public was disappointed with their performance and now want to have a better party take control.

AAP versus PTI
Similar to PTI, AAP has emerged as a party that aims to bring ‘change’ in the country’s system by eradicating corruption. PTI is not as new as the AAP but, in the last elections, it was the first time that the PTI gained so much popularity. AAP became very popular over social media in the same way PTI did here.
However, just as PTI failed to win a considerable number of seats in the general elections, it seems that AAP is heading for the same fate. It is anticipated that AAP will not be able to secure more than a minute number of seats in the Lok Sabha (Indian Parliament) – contrary to Mr Arvind Kejriwal’s claim of winning some 100 seats.
Another similarity is that PTI Chairman Imran Khan was accused of being a Zionist agent while AAP’s Arwind Kejriwal is called an ISI agent by his opponents. Both have been linked with apparent enemies of their respective countries.
Also, both AAP and PTI were given a tough time by other political parties since the latter took them as a direct threat to their political future. Plus, the media has been quite critical of both these parties till date.

BJP versus PML-N
BJP, currently the strongest contender of the INC, is predicted to be the major winning party which will rule the country after the upcoming elections. This aspect is similar to that of the PML-N in Pakistan; the biggest rival of PPP. The PML-N too was anticipated to be the next winning political party, before the 2013 elections took place in Pakistan.
The BJP accuses AAP of having links with INC, similar to PML-N accusing PTI, during the election campaign, of being the new face of PPP.

All in all, as per recent developments, India’s INC seems to be Pakistan’s PPP; BJP as Pakistan’s PML-N and AAP like PTI. There are definite differences present but in a larger context, the above mentioned similarities in both political scenarios can be noticed without doubt.
Let’s see how things progress in India as it moves towards the 2014 elections, which have been declared by the international media to be the largest elections in the world – a consequential election which will be a game-changer for India. As things proceed, we might find even more similarities between the political scenarios of the two countries, but only time will tell. For now, I wish the Indian masses – and the entire region – the very best of luck!



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