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Lok Sabha Elections 2019: In Haryana, chaupal discussions giving way to social media debates

With time, the age-old practice of discussing election issues at chaupals in Haryana has given way to newer platforms of discussions such as the social media.

lok sabha elections Updated: Mar 15, 2019 13:36 IST
Bhaskar Mukherjee
Bhaskar Mukherjee
Hindustan Times, Hisar
Lok Sabha Elections 2019,Election news,Lok Sabha Polls
Earlier, as soon as the elections were announced, locals would gather at the village chaupals to discuss election issues.(HT Photo )

Years ago, as soon as the polls were announced, locals in Haryana villages would gather at chaupals (common meeting place) to discuss election issues and decide on who to vote for, while drawing on hookah stems. With time, however, this age-old practice has given way to newer platforms of discussions such as the social media. Political parties too are making use of the social media as it has a wider reach, especially among the youth.

Nand Lal Hooda, a resident of Budhabhana village of Sirsa, remembers, “Earlier, people used to hold political discussions at the chaupals. But now times have changed. Almost everyone has a mobile phone and they keep themselves updated about the latest events through it.”

Ami Lal, 40, of Jamal village, echoes similar views. “Earlier, youth used to follow their elders and cast their vote. But now youths are more educated and tech-savvy. They know who is the best MP for them. In fact, some elders even consult the youths on who is the best candidate.”

Munshi Lal, 70, of the same village, says, “Now villagers of Haryana are broad-minded. Even the elders are educated. They know what is going on and what a politician is doing for them. However, we usually go to the chaupal regularly to discuss politics.”

He further says the most-talked about topic at the chaupals these days is the Balakot airstrike following the Pulwama attack. “There is a large contribution of Haryanvi youths in the Indian army,” he says, adding, “What the state now needs is better education and health care system.”

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First Published: Mar 15, 2019 13:35 IST

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