At a time when the trust level of people in the politicians has diminished, Delhi assembly elections have come as a fresh change. And who have been the harbingers of change? They are youth, who have reposed their trust in the electoral system as never before. The large voter-turn out in the elections has been mainly due to their increasing level of participation. Delhi’s 65.13% voter turn-out has been a landmark, in which around 2% of the total turn-out can be attributed to youth alone.
So, has a paradigm shift come? It is too early to say, but the level of trust shown by the youth started with a social cause-the movement against corruption started by Anna Hazare. A committed leadership united for a big cause attracted the youth, who started trusting the leaders who appeared to them the agents of change in a decadent political culture. But, when the movement fizzled out, and Arvind Kejriwal parted out to form a political party, the trust level appeared to be broken. Kejriwal’s call to youth to enter the political fray to bring in systematic change strengthened the trust.
Much will now depend on the results of Delhi elections. The trust of youth in AAP will show a real test when the results are out. However, it appears that AAP is bound to emerge as a major political force in future, and youth will be its prime target group. To what extent AAP is able to keep the trust level of youth intact based on its performance, has to be seen. The promise of systematic change has to be translated into reality. Today, the country faces a big challenge to ensure that the youth increase their level of trust in politics. At a deeper level, the trust level of youth in politics, will increase only if more such alternatives promising change like AAP emerge. The rising awareness level of youth towards political issues can be utilised in a constructive way only if trust-worthy political equations emerge which strike a popular chord in the minds of dominant youth population.