People all over India are simultaneously fuming over the attempts of political leaders who are trying to create an impression of being tech-savvy. It seems that the voters have no bandwidth for leaders who aren't Y2K-okay. Or for people who use words like "tech-savvy".
"It's like a slap on the face", said Ram Bharosay, a farmer in the Eastern state of Uttar Pradesh, while baking cakes of cow dung. "They're half-baked attempts at trying to sound relevant would have been funny if they weren't so tragic. And I should know about tragedy. My family lost me at the Kumbh mela. Although I was able to find them on facebook last year. It's so painful to hear that these politicians are just discovering the internet. C'mon. I even met my wife through the internet. Although, she looks nothing like the picture she posted on her eHarmony profile. In fact, I later found out that it was a picture of Meg Ryan. I feel so stupid when I think about it now."
"Meh", said 13 year old Anandi, mother of five, who in a few years will become the world's youngest Octo-Mom. "These old fuddy-duddy politicans are so not with it. Look at me, I catch up on my blog-reading and answer all my mails on my blackberry while I trek four miles everyday to fetch a pale of water. In fact, I'll sell the next daughter I have to get money for this cool new VAIO P mini laptop the girls at the river have been talking about. I would have sold one of the daughters I currently have, but someone needs to cook and clean and look after my two precious little boys. Since we can't afford insurance cover, giving birth to as many boys as I can is my best bet for old age. I mean, at least one of them will survive malaria and live to be a great-grandfather at forty."
"It's stuff like this which makes me want to go live in America", said 17 year old Enaraye, while sipping his Chai Latte. "These people just got started with blogging. And everybody knows that blogging is so 2004. Everyone is on twitter now. Who do these people think they are? Obama?". He would have said more but he was busy sending tweets to the fake Tina Fey profile hoping for a response.
When accused that they are copying Barack Obama's internet strategy, one of the chief architects of the IT team helping political parties formulate an online presence, Mr Anu Malik, said that "So what? No one can lay claim on an idea. Two people can have the same idea, can't they? In fact just yesterday I thought of this song ..." He then began singing a song which was suspiciously similar to Coldplay's Viva La Vida.
However, not everyone is impressed. One of the leaders of the left parties, Mr Iama Doosh, said that "all this facebook-ing and tweeting is a capitalist conspiracy to encourage people to stay in touch. Why do we need to stay in touch, exactly? I have not spoken a word to my wife since our wedding night fifty years ago and both of us are happy. Although, sometimes I do wonder why my son bears a striking resembalance to my wife's yoga teacher, and feel the urge to ask her a few questions. But I have a strict principle that one should not fix something which ain't broke. Just like our policy of non-alignment. Except of course, when it comes to China. Then all bets are off."
Other objections were also being raised. Mr Ver Gin, a prominent leader of the Ramanand Sagar Sena, said that "All this social networking etc. is against our culture. We will not tolerate all these loose women who are ..err... let loose by their parents so that they can visit these amoral websites. In fact, we are going to storm any cyber-cafe which dares to let women access the internet without being accompanied by a male relative. The only "networking" these women should be doing is with kitchen utensils."
Critcs also lament that the politicians attempt to reach out to younger, trying-to-be-hip voters is a farce. In response to a question, filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt said that "The lingua franca used by the self-anointed pioneers of modish culture is bewildering, perplexing, confounding and it contravenes and repudiates the small fabric which binds society together and annihilates national integration. I call for the end of such disengenious and rasputainesque attempts." We later found out that the question Mr Bhatt was asked was "Will you have fries with that?"