Parents may take this up with the school, too. It is not good that this is dismissed as jest or light-hearted banter. It can certainly impact a child’s mind
Representational images. Pic/iStock
Less than a week after the Election Commission issued directives against the use of children in election-related activities, a Shiv Sena MLA was featured in a video in which he can be heard telling schoolchildren that they should warn their parents if they do not vote for him in the forthcoming election, then they (the children) would not eat for two days.
Though this man is known for making attention-grabbing, controversial statements, it is shocking that he is allowed to talk to children in this way. He needs to be pulled up by his own party, which needs to understand that these utterances are doing them no good. In fact, people are shocked and disgusted and his words could result in people not voting for him.
Parents may take this up with the school, too. It is not good that this is dismissed as jest or light-hearted banter. It can certainly impact a child’s mind.
As the Lok Sabha elections draw nearer, we need to keep a look out for statements and hijinks from different leaders of all political dispensations. Their parties need to rein them in, with the realisation that controversy may not always translate into votes and in fact, may boomerang on them.
These are the days when social media is on a fervent, frenetic whirl and every statement is magnified. It also whirrs around long after,
amplifying its impact.
It will first help if leaders weigh their words and put their minds in motion before letting loose their tongues. If this is too much to ask of some, party functionaries need to check this. People need to be wary about what to believe and what not to, and how much heed to be paid to such statements. Use discretion and listen sharp.