The Great Indian Election is around the corner…. serious business you’d say…. The results of the much awaited 2019 Elections, aren’t being waited for with bated breath by the Indians only; The world is looking out for it. the frenzy around the Elections this year, is of a different beat! The world’s biggest democracy, with about 900 million voters, is set to decide in April-May whether Prime Minister Narendra Modi gets a second term following his thumping victory in 2014, and that gives the Indian tourism industry a different way to market the country.
No, it isn’t through Taj Mahal anymore…. The Indian Election rallies are far more exciting! From the Election tactics to Voting schemes, there is a lot going on…. If Chicken biryani, social media spends, chopper rides, Goats for votes and using elephants to carry voting machines sound like bizarre rallying techniques… Digest this….. Foreigners keen on experiencing a slab of Indian elections are being treated to guided tours clubbing the political rallies as part of the ‘tourism’ package. Many of them have taken this opportunity to create awareness among voters urging them to exercise their franchise. Ek teer… do, teen, char, paanch nishaaney!
And when PM Narendra Modi himself invites the world to “see how democracy runs in the blood of Indians.”, the world listens! With 750-800 from UK and Scotland, slated to be invited to India by tour operators, to get a taste of Indian Democracy, the Great Indian Elections Of 2019, are enroute to creating a History of sorts. Elections 2019 are turning to be nothing short of the Great Indian Wedding! Making money off it…. obviously!
The Great Indian Election is now being compared to Indian festivals drawing tourists from around the world—only this time, the itinerary includes participating in political rallies and having meals with party workers…. the rawest form of witnessing Indian Democracy!
The Election Celebration!
As part of the election tour, the travellers can meet candidates in rural and regional areas, meet an election commission officer and party leaders, and interact with them….and share a meal with the politicians.
If a customer wants a customised itinerary focused on a single party, they can plan a trip specially for them as well. A win-win situation for everyone! While the tourists get to see the largest democracy in action and get to ride with politicians in their jeeps, experience flower showers, even voting, the politicians also appreciate having foreigners in their rallies. Election Tourism offers various packages across India! And may just become the top tourism ploy yet!
During the historic 2014 Indian general elections. 5,200 people from countries including Germany, the UAE, Japan, Nepal, China and France had signed up for election-centric itineraries that mixed local sight-seeing along with the political purpose. This year, it goes a step further… now, a visit to the Taj Mahal can be followed up with the most luscious dinner with the party officials!
And we thought Elections were boring!