Political Discussions down South
In Kerala, political discussions are as hot and lenghthy as its tea. You do not need a Coffee House or a decent seating to discuss politics. Anywhere and everywhere, anytime anything. I find some of these discussions to be more intelligent than what the intelligent discuss.
Discussions starts early in the morning. Typically people come out after their morning chores and after finishing their favourite newspapers for a glass of tea (Cup of Tea is not relevent here because there are no cups used to serve tea or coffee).
These people are not pseudo-patriots nor pseudo-seculars, a terminology that is more prevalent in North. They do not discuss what others should eat and drink but more what they should drink and the spread of bites they can get. They love their quarter. The not so affluent among them queue up in front of Beverages Corporation shops for that elusive 250 ml bottle of their favourite alcholol. But branding every guy as an alcoholic will be pure exaggeration.
Discussion range starts from serious matters of their local area, Panchayat, the situation in Gulf regions to whether Donald Trump is fit to be US President or not. I have heard them discuss Obama Healthcare too.
The southern state of Kerala is a politically active place. Very few states in India have a participatory democracy as much as this tiny state has. People’s participation in government decision making process is what I admire. Now whether this has come from the street side discussions or not is debatable point. But I believe it has.