13 Jun 2024

Has public rejected freebie culture? What do 2024 Lok Sabha Election results show?

The outcome of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections highlights the significant influence of Indian voters' collective wisdom, surpassing the predictions of political analysts and experts. In this election, the electorate has emphasized the importance of collaboration between the government and the opposition for the nation's progress. Furthermore, voters have sent a clear message regarding populist strategies, indicating that no political party can sway them through direct or indirect bribes. The Supreme Court has also repeatedly warned about freebie schemes or freebie culture. 


YS Jagan Mohan Reddy govt implemented many populist schemes

The states with the most extensive free schemes included Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Odisha, and Punjab. In Andhra Pradesh, the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government implemented significant populist schemes over the past five years, offering free water, education, healthcare, grains, and more. Monthly stipends were given to women and farmers, and numerous facilities, such as free bus travel, were available. 

Despite these efforts, Jagan Mohan Reddy faced a crushing defeat, securing only 11 out of 175 assembly seats. In contrast, the alliance of Chandrababu Naidu's Telugu Desam Party, Pawan Kalyan's Janasena, and the BJP won a total of 164 seats. This outcome indicates that the public values corruption-free, development-oriented governance over merely receiving free schemes.

A variety of free schemes are in place in Delhi, Punjab

If any party symbolizes the concept of free schemes in Indian politics, it is Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party. The Aam Aadmi Party governs Delhi and Punjab, where a variety of free schemes are in place. However, the party faced a complete rout in Delhi and managed to win only three out of 13 seats in Punjab. Similarly, Odisha, once seen as a model for free schemes, saw Naveen Babu Patnaik's government ousted after 25 years in power.

Cong introduced freebie schemes in Telangana, Karnataka, and HP

Similarly, in Telangana, Karnataka, and Himachal Pradesh, the Congress party introduced numerous freebie schemes for the public. However, the BJP achieved greater success in all three states. In Himachal Pradesh, the BJP secured all four seats. In Telangana, both the BJP and Congress won an equal number of eight seats each. In Karnataka, the BJP, in alliance with the Janata Dal Secular, won 17 out of 28 seats. Clearly, the public in these states did not favor the freebie culture.

In Kerala, the leftist government has long been seen as a leader in freebie schemes. However, the Marxist government did not enjoy public favor. Similarly, in Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra, the BJP governments launched numerous initiatives promising free rations, education, cheap electricity, and loan waivers. Despite these efforts, the BJP faced significant losses in both states.

Freebie schemes offer limited benefits

Overall, the results suggest that freebie schemes offer limited benefits. If the government and administration are not accountable, free from corruption, and do not effectively implement these schemes, they will lose public support. Decisions must be made in the interest of the public as a whole. Any doubts about the government's intentions can lead to a loss of public support for the party or government.

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