India's young need jobs: Andhra leader (Election Special)
Bureaucrat-turned-politician Jayaprakash Narayan, whose Lok Satta Party is contesting 100 assembly seats in Andhra Pradesh, is worried that manufacturing is "at a standstill" and sought creation of more jobs for the young.
"We are adding 15 million young people in the job market every year, but we are creating 10 percent jobs for them. Manufacturing is really at a standstill and the greatest challenge is to make that happen whatever it takes," Narayan told IANS.
The Lok Satta Party's national president, who worked as a member of the National Advisory Council in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, has declared his support for Narendra Modi as he feels the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is showing signs of change by focussing on job creation.
"Now that the Congress has failed spectacularly, we need a stable government which focusses on job creation.
"Among all, he (Modi) seems to be focussed on that and as long as he is focussed on that and as long as he and his party show welcome inclination to stay away from polarisation of the country, we believe that we should encourage that behaviour," said Jayaprakash Narayan whose moniker 'JP' is the same as that of the original 'JP', the socialist leader who took on then prime minister Indira Gandhi in the 70s and forged an opposition alliance to humble the all-powerful Congress party.
Popularly known among supporters also as 'JP', he quit as an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer in 1996 to launch the Loksatta as a movement for democratic reforms and turned it into a political party a few years ago.
He is contesting for the Lok Sabha from the Malkajgiri constituency, located on the periphery of Hyderabad. His party is also contesting 100 assembly seats in Andhra Pradesh, mostly in the urban centres. Though both the BJP and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) did not respond to his idea for an alliance, he still announced his support for Modi.
The 58-year-old feels there is nothing wrong in his support to Modi despite the allegations against him over his handling of the 2002 riots in Gujarat.
"Let us give them a chance," he said.
He pointed out that as NAC member, he worked closely with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
JP, who was elected to the Andhra Pradesh assembly in 2009 from Kukatpally, went on to say that "today, the kind of people who are electable are people who simply can't govern - and the people who can govern are not simply electable in most cases. This is a terrible paradox".
On the Aam Aadmi Party, he said: "They have no understanding of governance, institutions and economy. They have no capacity to work with others. They see it as a war. They were just angry."
(Mohammed Shafeeq can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)
(Posted on 25-04-2014)