What is the definition of a good politician? The question becomes more relevant today than ever as the general image of a politician is much maligned. For long, a politician in Marathi films was the one who would be evil, lusting for tamasha dancers. Somehow, they never showed his constructive work like sugar co-operative, schools, etc. Today, it’s become worse. A politician is the worst villain one can imagine.
So then, again, who is a good politician and why are they so rare?
The answer to why we can’t find them today is largely in the electoral process. There was a time when political parties had to only propagate their ideologies and hope that the voter will come to the polling booth to vote for them. Today, if you want to win, you need to make extra efforts to ensure he comes to the booth. The voting percentage will drop below 40% if the parties didn’t try hard enough.
So for each politician, the challenge then is to win election by getting the people to vote and not elaborate on what his party stands for.
Also, the expectations of electorate are changing rapidly. One cannot ask an MP or MLA to help with a water connection or a school admission. Their job is law-making or policy-making. But, they are forced to engage in these kind of issues. How do you expect them to then pay attention to better laws and better policies?
Personally, to me, a good politician is the one who ensures there is better governance. It doesn’t mean good performance by the government, but a fair and transparent administration that is sensitive to people. A political representative who ensures that is a good politician.