The middle class people of the country are actually the opinon makers and their influence of support to any political party or political conglomeration play a vital role to influence the majority of electorates all over the country, especially in the urban and suburban classes of the society. Whether it was the victory of the Congress or Congress led UPA that ruled India for six decades or so or the BJP or BJP led NDA which is currently on the political saddle at the centre and several states of the country, the role and support of the middle class was always significant.
Whether they are the government servants, those working corporates, media, advocates, traders and in various other sectors hail from this class and play a vital role in shaping the destiny of the country as well as the political parties as they are the ones’ who are very much the part and parcel rather the backbone of the government and the system that actually delivers. If they are happy and pleased they work as a catalytic agent for a party in power and if they become annoyed they take no time to dethrone those whom they have helped climb the saddle of political and administrative power.
When prime minister Narendra Modi reached the top echelons of power it was the same middle class which dethroned the scam ridden Congress that was in power at the centre for ten long years. Not only did they made widespread favourable opinion and political climate for BJP and Modi, nationally, while being functional in various wings of the government and private sector but also ensured that the previous Congress led UPA is wiped out of power from the roots. And BJP led NDA under Narendra Modi’s charismatic leadership acknowledged more than absolute majority for five years.
The middle class is a class that believes in comforts, promotions, remunerations, monetory benefits n a hassle free standarised life with limited and fixed income. If its budget is disturbed or the growth rate comes down affecting their comfortable life style it gets imbalanced and annoyed. This class is hardly concerned or bothered about the political developments of the country may it be the issue of cow vigilantism, farmers suicides, child or women trafficking or political upheavals for power. It’s merely concerned that their lifestyle and level of sustenance is not disturbed.
But today this opinion maker class is badly disturbed as during the last three years not only has their standard of living come down due to inflationary pressures and hike in petroleum products but the foreign investment and private sector investments have also not shown the desired results. After demonetisation this class seems to have been worstly affected as medium and small business has witnessed the lowest ebb due to money crunch and low level employees heading for their respective hometowns.
The demand and purchasing power has badly come down. The crude oil despite being cheap in international market has no impact on petro pruducts with prices of petrol and diesal still going high. The government is busy levying the central excise and state taxes on petroleum products to cover its losses and keep the economy buoyant thus burdening the already burdened middle and lower middle class(es). It is believed that the government levies the excise and state taxes of more than a lakh crores on petro products.
It is obvious that this increase will further inflate the fares of transportation which will adversely impact the prices of vegetables, food stuffs and essential commodities. The introduction of complicated GST have further brought small and medium business to standstill at least for another few months till the situation improves or stabilizes. The energy and the speed with which the traditional middle class voters were given assurances of ACHE DIN are literally fading out with Indian GDP growth also at its lowest of 5.7% since the last six quarters.
While unmindful of his traditional vote bank Modiji is largely concentrating on the poor sections which is indeed a good sign of his well planned strategy but by leaving the middle class in the lurch he is undoubtedly taking a huge risk as 2019 is not far. And the middle class though less in number is effective enough to widely transfer and spread, rather trickle their anger and annoyance among the common masses, expeditiously. What do you say friends?