Video Editor : Purnendu Pritam
In the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, Maharashtra will be voting in four phases — on 11 April, 18 April, 23 April and 29 April. So, what are the big election issues for the state? To answer this question, The Quint reached Maharashtra's winter capital, Nagpur.
In this edition of My Vote Chaupal, we spoke to some Dalit youngsters in Nagpur to try and understand their perspective on the general elections and their feelings about the Modi government's term.
What emerged was that these Dalit students have different opinions — while some are happy with the performance of the Modi government, some feel that it failed to deliver on its promises.
Maruti Baghmare, one of the students, said that while he liked some of the Modi government’s reforms, he was disgusted by the atrocities on Dalits and Muslims.
“When leaders separate Hindus and Muslims for a political agenda, it’s shameful,” he said.
Praveen Gondia, another student, agreed, saying that he had seen Muslims and Hindus living in harmony in rural areas and that the government was turning this into a political agenda.
The students were heavily critical of dynasty politics, adding that this caused hard working and deserving politicians to get left behind.
“Sonia Gandhi was the party president earlier, after which Rahul Gandhi came forward. Instead of him, there were [other] leaders who could have been made the party president. But now, only the children of big leaders will become the president,” Gondia said.
The students also said they feel there is a lack of young faces in mainstream politics.
On the issue of reservation, too, they were upset. While one student said that Modi giving reservation to Marathas in the state was not right, another said that it was okay as long as others did not have to give it up.
One student said that both Rahul Gandhi and Narendra Modi were not good leaders.
Another student, Nikhil, was of the opinion that the middle class had not received anything from the Modi government and that there were continuing problems in the education system.
"See, whether the Congress comes to power or the BJP, whether Modi comes or Rahul Gandhi, we don't care. We want 'Manuski', which means ‘humanity’, which I can't see at all," he added.