‘Cash for votes is a way of political life in South’

Cable sent by Frederick J. Kaplan, acting principal officer of the US consulate-general in Madras, to the state department in Washington D.C., outed by The Hindu through Wikileaks.

“Bribes from political parties to voters, in the form of cash, goods, or services, are a regular feature of elections in South India. Poor voters expect bribes from political candidates, and candidates find various ways to satisfy voter expectations. From paying to dig a community well to slipping cash into an envelope delivered inside the morning newspaper, politicians and their operatives admitted to violating election rules to influence voters. The money to pay the bribes comes from the proceeds of fund-raising, which often crosses into political corruption. Although the precise impact of bribery on voter behavior is hard to measure, it no doubt swings at least some elections, especially the close races.”

Kaplan sent the cable after meeting Union home minister P. Chidambaram’s son, Karti Chidambaram, of the Congress, M. Patturajan, confidant of Union minister for chemicals and fertilizers M.K. Alagiri and former mayor of Madurai, and member of Parliament Assaduddin Owaisi of the Majlis-e-Ittenhadul Muslimeen.

Read the full story: ‘Cash for votes a way of political life in South India

Also read: How The Hindu got hold of the Wikileaks’ India cables

CHURUMURI POLL: Is South India in a big mess?

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14 Responses to “‘Cash for votes is a way of political life in South’”

  1. vindy Says:

    man….all these years, i have been reading the wrong newspaper , never got anything in an envelope

  2. yayaver Says:

    In implementing schemes for welfare of the people, the government is now thinking about the idea of “Direct Cash Transfer” while our politicians are doing this from long time for votes. Impressive :)

  3. twistleton Says:

    Some people do the smart thing- take the goodies and vote for whoever they want.

  4. Sanjeeva Says:

    What about political life in North? Do we hear further?

  5. Jayashree Says:

    2G money will be, and is being used by the DMK. Nobody will do any thing about this. Only SC should step in!! LOL!

  6. vikram Says:

    it is not a question of north or south. politicians come from the same breed and are all same. same basic human instinct…. one can attribute this to symbiosis.

  7. mounaprasad Says:

    Five Years back MK had provided free color TVs to the TN people in lieu of votes. Now, it will be fun to watch these people enjoying their beloved Kalaignar and his extended family being investigated and grilled by CBI for their involvement in 2G scam on their government provided color TVs. The question here is will the TN people care for the scam and be disgusted and vote out MK’s party OR gratefully remember MK’s gift to them 5 years ago and again vote him back to power.

  8. Deepak Says:

    Mr.Kaplan obviously hasn’t met Behenji, Lallu, Mulayam and co.
    Would be interesting to read his cable after he meets these honourable denizens.

  9. mysore peshva Says:

    there’s no such thing as “south.” direction is arbitrary, and the region, non-existent.

  10. twistleton Says:

    And the political north is a pragon of virtue i suppose :D

  11. DailyBread Says:

    Formerly honest present prime minister bought off MPs using the good offices of prince’s chauffeur . Guru Gobind Singh quoting formerly honest economist PM must have insisted on trickle down when he was cutting these deals.

  12. harkol Says:

    hmm… Apparently UPA-1 did the same.. Our politics right now is a sad state of affairs.

  13. the colonel Says:

    what is ENVELOPE?????

  14. Shetty Says:

    Topic: Cash for Votes
    Relevancy: 100% in Karnataka
    Solution: Your own guess. (BJP on way out)

    The state of affairs in this state is definitely beyond redemption. But if Egypt or Libya were an example some foresight among the key BJP leaders (total, shameless, corrupt betrayers) may have started now…

    Even a pseudo rebel-led reviving strategy actioned by Reddy’s or Anant Kumar will be ultimately a boon to all Kannadigas who have suffered so much, all these decades.
    After all, the Mill Clerk to CM specimen of a “illiterate, dictatorial & superstitious’ CM has now convinced everyone on the street that he can’t be more selfish or more corrupt to Karnataka.

    Proof of success in power is the very fact that key flunkies like Renukacharya, Murugesh Nirani or key figures like Ashok (with benami Blr MLA’s like Muniraju who fix all real estate) along with the most corrupt yet shady leaders like Reddys, Eshwarappa & others are now on the final stage of lifetime of huge black money driven continuing biz led politics.

    And thanks to his canny strategy of tangibly helping/involving key opposition Cong-I personalities and pseudo religious leaders in his most shady mega deals, especially real estate, he has been luckily sailing over every crisis so far with the top BJP brass happy with the obvious stealth Swiss bank contributions…. A very good strategy considering the fact that his national President is himself a petty trader while all the national figures have been gifted the massive loot from Karnataka.

    Well, Yeddiyurappa has had a dream-run with Ragavendra, Viayendra, Sohan Kumar & family not to mention dear Miss Shobha Karandlaje, uncle Achar and a few others who have also been thanking God so much for a uniquely Indian miracle called naked -corruption covered by democracy and party. The big picture involves the judiciary, executive and a working black money led-anarchy called India!

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