Brunei/ Jakarta, Oct 10: Speaking on the upcoming elections in India and Indonesia, the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, on Thursday said that the well informed youth would be a decisive factor in both democratic elections.
“We are both strong democracies and elections are a way of life. In today’s India, the electorate of close to 800 million is educated and politically well-informed,” Dr. Singh told an Indonesian newspaper, Kompas.
“Many are young and full of energy, enterprise and ambition. They seek a better life for themselves and their children through access to opportunities, jobs, education, skill development, food and health care. All these issues are bound to figure in the run-up to the elections,” Dr Singh added.
Dr. Manmohan Singh left for Indonesia from Brunei earlier, where he will be accompanied by External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid and Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma.
In his departure statement, Dr. Singh said: “My visits to Brunei Darussalam and Indonesia will further intensify our engagement to our East, which has been at the forefront of our foreign policy, and contribute to peace, prosperity and stability in the Asia Pacific.”
Dr. Manmohan Singh had earlier appealed to all political parties in the lead up to the 2014 general elections in India, and said that all secular forces should unite to face the opposition’s Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
“I sincerely hope that all secular forces would combine to face the onslaught of people like Mr. Narendra Modi. And, I have every reason to believe that that will happen. You wait for some time before the people realise what they are up against,” Dr. Singh said onboard Air India One on Oct er 1, when asked if Modi is a threat to the nation’s secular polity.
Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi was announced as Bharatiya Janata Party’s Prime Ministerial candidate for the 2014 Lok Sabha Elections in September. (ANI)