Will Twenty20 redefine political aspiration in Kerala? Reflections from Keralite in UK – UKMALAYALEE

Will Twenty20 redefine political aspiration in Kerala? Reflections from Keralite in UK

Saturday 27 March 2021 9:33 PM UTC

By Alison Rebello

LONDON March 28: Every Malayalee who has settled in the west (padinjaar) still longs to keep a track of what is happening in the East (Kizhakkambalam) or for that matter in Kerala. By nature they love their motherland and wish and aspire that it flourishes equally well as the place where they are settled in- in the west. For the past couple of weeks the heightened interest among the Malayalees settled abroad- about the Kerala assembly election campaign seems to have surged.

Thanks to the corporate style governance of the relatively newly formed Twenty20 political party which has governed the Kizhakkambalam grama panchayat (village council at the grass root). What a transformation this model of sustainable development has brought among the ordinary people of that suburban city by wiping out corruption and working transparently for the welfare of the masses.

If corporate social responsibility can bring fruits in Kizhakkambalam, it could be easily replicated elsewhere in the country and is sure to yield the same output. Such political will needs more muscle to vibrantly work in every part of India. Just see the huge change that has come about in Delhi local governance with the Aam Admi Party making that effort to bring about so much change within a short span of time. All it required was the political will to curtail unnecessary bureaucratic hassle, political interference and curb monetary corruption to make the livelihood of the electorate stress free.

Now that Kerala has found its Kejriwal in the form of Sabu M Jacob, the chief coordinator of Twenty20, this has spoiled the political equation of the two political heavy weights UDF and LDF in places where Twenty20 has fielded their candidates. It is interesting to note that Sabu Jacob is the managing director of Kitex Garments Limited which supplies its products to Amazon and is one of the major suppliers of infant wear in the world. He has had a humble beginning from doing menial jobs within the company that his father started and made his way up by learning the ropes of the business thoroughly to be the person he is today.

With India standing at the threshold of a youthful exuberance compared to many other developing nations, it is time to evolve and join hands with such forward thinking parties not only in a few select districts and panchayats but perhaps this is a much needed model for the whole state of Kerala and all across India.

If such political prudence and boldness is backed by the electorate, changes are bound to happen for the good of the state and the country. The likes of Twenty20 have demolished the bastion of the two major alternatives in the Kochi suburb and people want to support them but those sitting in the powerful corridors are trying every possible trick in the book to bring them down. Let’s wait and watch which party symbol reigns supreme – the hand (UDF) or hammer and sickle (LDF) or will they be jolted heavily by the outwardly sturdy and inwardly soft pineapple (Twenty20) in those places where they are in the fray. On the other hand, what needs to be seen is if the BJP’s lotus is going to blossom in Kerala with them scooping the prized Metroman E Sreedharan as a member of their party.

It’s about time Kerala embraces good political governance and for that they need to invest in good people and corporate governance needs to take over and redefine politics to bring prosperity to the forefront. Such governance should be free of corruption and bribery establishing a new sense of belonging for the communities that co-exist without undue political interference and mud-slinging.

Many have made this mistake of calling Aam Admi party in Delhi as a party without any ideological moorings but their revolutionary ideas and its proper execution continues to derail the scheming opponents. The opposition is vehemently opposed to some of their future plans but they are determined to stick their head out and hold the forte. This has helped them to deliver on the promises they made in their election manifesto. Now the result is for everyone to see. The huge difference they have made by cleaning and clearing the pond of rampant political black waters is praised and talked around the world. Delhi residents are reaping the benefit of that change, despite the bureaucratic and political wrangling of the ruling party in the centre to disrupt AAP led world class development schemes.

So the moot question remains why can Delhi model not be replicated elsewhere? And this new and concerted move by Twenty20 in Kerala is a step in the right direction for India to move ahead. If only more good people with a clarion call to embrace progress and development are involved and take active part in politics, can it be overhauled, cleansed and perhaps the stench of deep rooted corruption be uprooted for good. Only then can we dream of a tomorrow that ascertains how the polity shapes citizenry and re-establishes public welfare as the core component of the political machinery.

What Alvin Toffler says applies for Kerala: “The illiterate of the 21 st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.” Being the most literate state in India, the people of God’s own country need to learn, unlearn and relearn in the light of the good works and the transparent modus operandi with which Twenty20 is hitting sixers all over the political boundaries, where they have fielded their candidates.

May Twenty20 be a beacon of hope for the future generations and that this move becomes a trailblazer that sets new patterns for the future of the democracy. It should make politicians think inwardly to reinvent and redefine political aspirations based on real needs of the society rather than just trying to amass wealth for themselves and their next of kin. Perhaps it is time for those asserting that Twenty20 is not a political opponent to rewire their old political antenna so that they are able to catch vital signs for a political revival or else feel the heat of defeat. AAP and Twenty20 are signs of the times that India needs to embrace and it should prompt political heavyweights in the fray to make change or be prepared to perish as political non entities, in the days ahead.

With election just round the corner, newcomers like Twenty 20 need to exude confidence consistently among the electorate and continue to tighten the loopholes to curb any anomalies and help strengthen a vibrant democracy that will see progress in all spheres of life in Kerala. Such a healthy political development will help the emotional quotient of non resident Malayalees soar high, whose heart is always in Kerala, so what if he /she is settled in London or in the West!

The author was born in Kollam, bred in the industrial town of Bhilai, resides in Newcastle where he chairs the Catholic Writers Guild of North East England. He can be contacted at rebello.alison@googlemail.com

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