"Said senior journalist Gautam Chatterjee: The sights and direction of Indian politics is now determined by the corporate sector. They sponsor a horse and the media creates a craze for that particular horse like Narendra Modi or Arvind Kejriwal. It's all about who is more profitable for the corporate sector, not for the public."
By Ashish Arora

Varanasi, April 20 - This teeming city, considered holy by Hindus, but home to a large proportion of Muslims, is slowly warming up to the political Star War as partymen and supporters of the three main contenders - Narendra Modi, Arvind Kejriwal and Ajai Rai - have begun canvassing for votes for the May 12 Lok Sabha election. Their excitement in the city is evident on the streets and in kasbahs.

People can be seen participating in the Bhartiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi's chai par charcha -, five-time legislator and sitting Congress MLA Ajay Rai's door-to-door meetings and Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal's chaupal sabhas -.

The people of Varanasi are very excited to see that their city has become so special. When a national level party announces its prime ministerial candidate from your city, excitement can be obvious. And such announcement works positively for the city, Sanjay Srivastava, a professor in the social sciences department of Banaras Hindu University -, told IANS.

But is there a Modi wave sweeping the ancient city? Its denizens feel otherwise. There are many for whom the popular enthusiasm for Modi is just partisan propaganda.

Where is the Modi wave? Is it being felt on the street? It is just a media creation, said an academic in a government-run college, asking not to be named.

They - have to sell their story and here it is, the big national story. It is the job of the camera to find faces, but these days faces are apparently approaching camera and trying to give an impression that they are all for one face, a national party. It is part of a big poll strategy of a political party, the academic told IANS.

Said senior journalist Gautam Chatterjee: The sights and direction of Indian politics is now determined by the corporate sector. They sponsor a horse and the media creates a craze for that particular horse like Narendra Modi or Arvind Kejriwal. It's all about who is more profitable for the corporate sector, not for the public.

A section of the city feels that it is not a good idea to ignore local leaders - a reference to Congress candidate Ajay Rai - in view of the presence of the Gujarat chief minister and the former chief minister of Delhi.


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