Traditional poll campaign methods thrive amid modern gizmos

November 15th, 2008 - 1:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyNew Delhi, Nov 15 (IANS) Though quick, crisp SMS campaigns have given pace to political canvassing in today’s gizmo-driven era, letters and TV commercials have still not lost the race as candidates use them as effective campaign tools in the Delhi assembly polls.Take Sahab Singh Chauhan, a member of Delhi’s legislative assembly and a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate from the Ghaunda constituency in northeast Delhi, who is sending printed letters to the voters of his area.

“I zeroed in on the idea of sending letters as it helps in connecting with the people better. It gives a personal touch,” Chauhan, whose supporters often describe him as a legislator on wheels, told IANS.

Chauhan is a three-time MLA from the Yamuna Vihar area, which ceased to exist after the delimitation of constituencies and so has shifted to another area.

The Delhi assembly elections are scheduled for Nov 29 and counting of votes would take place Dec 8.

His letters to the voters highlight the Congress’ 10-year “misrule” in Delhi and the plight of the common man today. He promises change.

“Letters is not the only mode of my campaign. I am focusing a lot on door-to-door campaigning also. But, finally, it’s my performance as a public representative that will see me through,” Chauhan added.

The residents of the area appreciated the idea of letters.

Satyawati Mittal, a resident of the Yamuna Vihar area, said: “I actually like the idea of politicians sending letters. I feel it is a simple and straight way of telling the voters what they can expect from their representatives.”

Om Prakash Sharma, the BJP candidate from the Vishwas Nagar constituency, is also sending letters to the voters of his area.

“Yes, I am using letters and pamphlets so that there can be direct contact with the voters, which is a work of every politician,” said Sharma, who is fighting the elections for the first time.

Sharma is pitted against the Congress’ Naseeb Singh, two-time legislator from the Vishwas Nagar constituency. Besides sending letters, Sharma recently campaigned along with former cricketer and BJP leader Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Some candidates have resorted to the use of cable television.

One such candidate is businessman- turned-politician Haji Kamruddin ‘Servokon Wale’, who is fighting on the Bahujan Samaj Party ticket from the Krishna Nagar constituency against Delhi BJP chief Harsh Vardhan, a three-time MLA from the area.

Kamruddin’s message appears on movie channels of a local cable network both during commercial breaks, as an advertisement which profiles him, and on the ticker.

“Advertisements on local channel is a simple way of reaching the voters,” Kamruddin told IANS. He is also sending printed letters to the voters in his area.

Kamruddin is the owner of Servokon System, a company involved in making inverters.

Another candidate campaigning through TV advertisements is the Congress’ Deepika Khullar who is fighting for the Krishna Nagar assembly seat.

Besides door-to-door contacts and street-corner meetings, Khullar is also making use of the cable TV network. Asked what prompted her to campaign on cable TV, Khullar said, “I chose the cable network (local movie channels) for advertisement as I wanted to reach out to the local people, which may not have been possible if I had used a national channel.”

She would also SMS the voters of her area during the last days of campaigning.

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