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Goals of AP Election Watch 2004

Immediate state-level goals:

1. FDR/Lok Satta's earlier EW efforts in 98' and 99' were successful in arresting the process of criminalization. As a result no new candidates entered the political arena, even though established candidates who have struck deep political roots continued to be in the fray. This time, we propose to go one step ahead and ensure that even the established and entrenched politicians with criminal/corrupt antecedents are not fielded by major parties and thereby reverse the process of criminalization. We will caution

the parties well in advance that if they field any candidates with a criminal record, we will ask the people not to vote for them. Given FDR/Lok Satta's credibility and support base in the state, we are confident that the parties will respond to our plea positively.

2. To influence the governance agenda, irrespective of which party or candidates are elected. Specifically we will focus on local government empowerment, enactment of a law for constituting local courts to deliver speedy justice in the local language and instruments of accountability such as right to information and citizen's charters with proivision for penalties. We will endeavour to make health care and school education as the center-piece of any new government's governance agenda.

3. To help clean up the electoral process within the state, given the limitations of the electoral system.

Medium-term National goals:

1. Bring to the fore certain issues pertaining to the electoral and governance process that are so far concealed from the public eye in a dramatic fashion. For example highlight the effect of criminalization and link corruption to the first-past-the post system of elections and parliamentary executive in states and make a compelling case for switching over to direct election of chief executive at the state level and for proportional representation.
2. By doing so, mobilize public opinion in favour of the reform process and impact political parties behaviour.
3. Launch a national campaign to enact required legal and constitutional changes to give effect to our advocacy.



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