Young Turks on the Political TurfVIEW EVENT DETAILS
Wednesday, 20th February, 2019, 6.30 pm
As many as 130 million first-time voters, more than the population of Japan will go to polls due by May. A 2016 survey by the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung asked more than 6,100 respondents to nominate the most important issue facing India, and 18% said jobs and unemployment, about 12% said economic inequality and 9% said corruption. India, a country with more than half of the population below the age of 25, a literacy rate of 74% and the highest number of Facebook users at 300 million, is more vocal, more ambitious and more aware than its previous election. Indians want fresher ideas, better solutions and quicker actions.
While the countdown to the 2019 general elections has witnessed a proliferation of comebacks, splits and new partnerships; it has also seen the emergence of a new generation of leaders and challengers across party lines who for now seem to offer a youthful and different approach to political life. Whether they are descendants of political dynasties, bureaucrats leaving civil services for politics or newcomers with professional backgrounds, the next generation of India’s leaders are working hard to change public perception about politics. From reaching out to their electorates through social media platforms like Twitter to pushing policy solutions for structured development, this relatively young group of politicians or the ‘under-55’ leaders club, symbolizes new hope and gumption.
What kind of politics will these ‘new leaders’ embody? How will they shift focus to core development and employment issues? Will they be able to refrain from realpolitik? What do the prospective alliances for upcoming elections look like?
Join us as we discuss the future of India’s political landscape and the emergence of a new generation of leaders. In conversation will be Anurag Thakur, Member of Parliament, Bhartiya Janta Party; Jayant Chaudhary, National Vice-President, Rashtriya Lokdal; Milind Deora, Former Member of Parliament, Indian Nationalist Congress; Praful Patel, Member of Parliament, Nationalist Congress Party as moderator and Priya Sahgal, Senior Executive Editor at NewsX and Author of The Contenders.
This is the first programme in our Elections in India Series, wherein we will be discussing the themes of governance, leadership, and institutions in the run-up to the General Elections.
Anurag Thakur is a three-time elected Member of the Indian Parliament (Lok Sabha) from Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh. Within the Parliament, he serves as Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on IT and Member of Public Accounts Committee. He has recently been appointed as the Chief Whip, Lok Sabha and is the youngest to assume the post. He was commissioned as an officer into the Territorial Army as a Lieutenant of the 124 Sikh Regiment. He is the former National President of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha and has been the only National President to be appointed for three consecutive terms in the BJP.
Jayant Chaudhary has served as a Member of Parliament in the 15th Lok Sabha. He contested the 2009 General Election from Mathura, Uttar Pradesh. He is currently the National Vice-President of the Rashtriya Lokdal. He was the co-chair of the FICCI Indo-British Forum of Parliamentarians and member of the Indo-Venezuela Parliamentary Friendship Group. Jayant did his undergraduate studies from Shri Venkateswara College, Delhi University, and in 2002 completed an MSc in Accounting and Finance from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Milind Deora entered the Lok Sabha in 2004 as a member of the Indian National Congress. He has held various positions in Parliamentary Committees on Defence, Civil Aviation, Estimates, Urban Development and Information Technology. He has also served as India’s Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology and Shipping. Prior to entering politics, Milind worked in the private sector in the United States and India and set up one of India's first digital public-private partnerships to provide economically underprivileged students free access to Information Technology-enabled education.
Praful Patel is currently a Rajya Sabha member from the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). A former cabinet minister during the Manmohan Singh led UPA government, he was first the Civil Aviation Minister and later, the Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises. An industrialist cum politician, Patel was known as a progressive and pro-reforms face of the UPA cabinet. A BCom graduate from the University of Mumbai, Patel was initially with the Congress but left along with Sharad Pawar in 1999. Since then he has emerged as a dominant voice in the NCP, especially in its dealings with the Centre.
Priya Sahgal is the senior executive editor at NewsX channel, where she anchors two political shows: ‘The Roundtable’ & ‘Cover Story'. A political journalist for nearly three decades, Priya has worked at Sunday, Outlook and India Today. She is also a political columnist for The Sunday Guardian. Her forte is explanatory journalism and the tone of her shows is conversational and analytical, not confrontational. Her book, The Contenders, profiles 16 GenNext politicians and captures a potentially transformative moment in Indian politics.
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