We've seen the parades, the campaigns, the stained middle fingers, exit polls, markets soaring on hopes of a stable government, series of never-ending allegations, over-confident self predictions and tug of wars with Jay Lalitha in the middle... and now the wait is O V E R. Almost. By the time I return from dinner, India will have decided between the 500 something parties (it doesn't seem like just one general election anymore) and picked someone 'fresh' for the PM ki kursi.
Whichever major national party wins will have the mammoth task of picking amongst several alliances. This is no longer politics but a complex algebra problem. The confusion is higher than ever. Will it be BJP-led NDA or Congress-led UPA? What about the Third Front? And the Fourth Front? Oh and did I forget the Left party? I need an external hard drive for my brain because I'm having memory capacity issues trying to hold onto so much information. And I just know the abbreviations so far.
Each alliance will come with it's own baggage and a truck load of issues they want to focus on. Thankfully no one's paying attention to US-India nuke deal, terrorism, quota policy, communal relations and of course the global financial crisis. They've been conveniently left out of the election campaigns.
I wish we had brackets for picking parties and leaders the way we do in March Madness here in the US. It'd be so fun and all of us could get involved and heck even make some money. The best part is, pretty blonde girls with absolutely no knowledge of bball often end up winning the pool in these brackets. Indian politics seems to be no different. It's really anybody's guess.
So let's see who's going to wear the coveted tiara. Will it be LK Advani (senior-most BJP leader) or Rahul Gandhi (current heart throb) or Sonia Gandhi (desh ki bahu) or Prakash Karat (who, what?) or Jaylalitha (queen bee forever) or Mayawati (first dalit PM?) or Sharad Pawar(yay for IPL) or Nitish Kumar (the new secular hope) or Dr. Manmohan Singh (architect of India's economic reforms)? Or someone else? Too many options. I'm not even going to bring up the question of who's PM material. I'd never go that far ;)
I'm a die-hard BJP gal and my fingers are crossed. Will the lotus bloom?