Path-Breaking Pre-Poll Survey in TN
Chennai: Free grinders. Free laptops. Free washing machines. Free-for-all inflation. Free pollution. Freebies are raining in Tamil Nadu these days.
With the all-important Assembly election on its way, wily and wizened politicians are indeed playing the Santa Claus, by which we mean they are making promises that only a pre-school toddler would believe in.
The problem with the ‘vote one, get a grinder free’ kind of offer is that it doesn’t take into consideration people’s sincere and honest aspiration for being totally lazy. Grinder, quite obviously, involves a lot of work in preparation and cleaning, which is impossible to manage when the common man is already overworked by having to use what the government has already thoughtfully delivered: Free television.
Anyway, to understand the pulse of the people, Cranks News commissioned a full-fledged pre-poll survey in Tamil Nadu that asked many important political and sociological questions, like what will really work in the election market? What freebie can sway the voters? What are their dreams and desires? (To the last question, many answered Tamannah and Trisha. Whether this means political parties must promise to offer these two free is a moot point).
‘Our brief was to talk to the people and understand their needs. It’s for the parties to decide on what they want to do with our findings. Our lips are sealed when it comes to Trisha or Tamannah,’ said the spokesperson of the firm that carried out the survey.
Releasing the findings of the survey, the spokesperson said: ‘Tamil Nadu being a politically aware and responsible State, the all-round interest in cricket was inevitably very high.’
78% of the people felt that considering the high prices of all essential commodities along with the galloping inflation, the primary need of the hour is the World Cup. Rising above parochial regional State interests, most people had a national outlook on this one. ‘Any party that promises World Cup for India is guaranteed to get our votes for lifetime,’ was the gist of the popular opinion.
‘Free World Cup for India,’ will be a sure-fire clincher in the poll battle, said the survey spokesperson. ‘Such a promise not only stands to get enormous goodwill for the party but also ensures that the people talk about nothing else for the next 4 years or more. Remember with no World Cup to show for, we are still talking about 1983’.
‘One of the persons survey most memorably said: ‘if I were Manmohan Singh, I would, in fact, order a World Cup win for India. This is the only way to make people stop talking about the various scams’.
Of course, there were dissenters, too. One of them said: ‘World Cup is a trivial pursuit. We, as responsible people, must have the vision to look at the larger picture. If we are serious in life we have to ask much more basic questions, like: Why pick Piyush Chawla at all in the Indian squad at all?’
Before you start to think that the people of Tamil Nadu are sold out on cricket and the World Cup alone, it should be pointed out here that they were seriously concerned with other vital issues of everyday living. For example, Rajnikanth’s new venture Rana.
More than 63% of the people surveyed wanted a categorical clarification whether Rajni is indeed doing the film by playing three roles and whether Deepika is one of the heroines. ‘Political parties, if they are really people-centric, must have all the details of Rajnikanth’s next film in their manifestoes,’ said a member of the public. ‘A ticket for the film’s first-day-first-show will naturally catapult whichever party that promises this straight to the rulers’ chair’.
Also, among the questions posed to those surveyed was: Do you want to know the story of Kamal Haasan’s next movie? 93% said they actually wanted to know what exactly was the story of Hey! Ram.
There were many other interesting findings in the survey, which went beyond the pale of polls.
Over 89% wanted actor Vijay to take up active politics. ‘Anything that keeps him away from films has to be welcomed wholeheartedly’, was the near consensus.
On the reservation front, free MBBS or BE degrees for the MBCs and the OBCs were felt to be the right affirmative action by around 82% of the populace surveyed. The remaining 18% wanted free professional PG degrees for the minorities.
54% of the people felt that the month of March, with no government holidays, had no relevance in the calendar. Abolish it, was their verdict.
Salaries and perks should be made a constitutional right. Free salaries for everyone must the motto of any responsible political party. 92% demanded this. The rest were sleeping as they were approached during their office hours.
The unanimous opinion of the public was that all poll surveys are stupid, and did not participate in it. We just made up the above numbers. All 100% of them.
(Disclaimer: Free laughs for all is our motto)