Grand Tamasha

Notes from the Campaign Trail and Rukmini S. on Journalism and the 2019 Elections

Episode Summary

What's happening in the UP and West Bengal? And how good is election reporting in India?

Episode Notes

First, James Crabtree of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy and author of the best-selling book, The Billionaire Raj: A Journey Through India’s New Gilded Age, joins Milan to talk about his recent campaign trip to Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. The two discuss the pitched battle in UP, the impact of Priyanka Gandhi, and the BJP’s rise in West Bengal. Milan and James also discuss the menace of stray cattle in Uttar Pradesh and its impact on rural voters.

Then, Milan speaks with freelance data journalist and author of the series, *How India Votes*, Rukmini S. Rukmini shares her disappointment with the state of election reporting in India and the struggle to generate a theory of the Indian voter. Milan and Rukmini also talk about gender and caste—two important themes of the 2019 election that could shape the final outcome. The two conclude with a discussion of the challenges the BJP faces in replicating its landmark 2014 performance.