The period between the last phase of an Indian General Election and the day of vote counting is most unusual in the Indian sense. This is, arguably, the only time when the politicians shut up and the verdict of the people speaks up. At least one day in five years, the people truly feel empowered and realise that they are the rulers, not the ruled. The politicos appear like hungry cats waiting for their master to bring the food (in this case, votes). After the vote counting, of course, the politicos turn masters and we, the people, servants.
May 16 will be a day of triumph for both voters and journalists. Almost all journalists will be in a joyous, festive mood regardless of which political party comes to power. After all, everybody, including Mr Narendra Modi and Mr Rahul Gandhi, will be glued to the news media for real-time information. As communication researcher Marshall McLuhan once rightly said, those who have the knowledge are in the position to define ‘legitimate knowledge’. May 16 would be a day of those who access, own and disseminate knowledge; it would be a day of the journalists.
While most television journalists will be busy reporting, discussing, analysing and some shouting in studios, they will hardly have the time to use their social media accounts. So, here is a list of journalists to follow on Twitter if, unfortunately, you cannot watch television popping popcorn for intense discussions.
R Jagannathan, Editor of First Post @TheJaggi
If you want to track elections on social media then you cannot afford to skip Jaggi, at least on the day of counting. The editor of First Post will get you first hand report of surprising victors and losers, thin and huge margins and the fate of celebrities alike. If you like, you can avoid him for his vehemently pro-Modi stance.
Kanchan Gupta, Editorial Director of Niti Digital @KanchanGupta
Expect Kanchan Gupta to take everybody’s case from Modi to Gandhi, Manmohan Singh to Karunanidhi, historians and psephologists alike. But this data expert may bring some mathematical data to the table that we have not seen or imagined possible in elections.
Siddhartha Vardrajan @svaradarajan
Former editor of The Hindu who, in a bold move recently, announced his exit from the newspaper on Twitter. He can provide you some real good links to in-depth analysis of candidates, overall election scenario and what it could mean to the fate of 1.2 billion human beings. He is the serious kind, you see! So be ready to read heavy stuff.
Sachin Kalbag, Executive Editor of Mid-Day @SachinKalbag
A seasoned, balanced journalist of Mid-Day will definitely find spoof, satire, entertainment and eye-brow raising election content for you on the D Day. And if you are bored of too much political stuff all day, then check out his videos and photographs to relax your mind.
Hartosh Singh Bal, Political Editor, The Caravan @HartoshSinghBal
Hartosh Bal Singh recently listed 10 questions that Times Now Editor-in-Chief, Arnab Goswami should have asked Narendra Modi. The political editor of the narrative style Caravan magazine has been highly vocal on Times Now recently, but he can ask some tough questions and post historic, well-researched reports online if you are of the kind who likes to pick convoluted brain cells.