Black umbrella and red booklets have taken over Delhi and our national newspaper as Parliament has come in to session in Delhi this month. As an Indian citizen it is often hard for me to remember what a MP is expected to do. Here is the shocker for most of you: NOTHING. Our Indian Constitution does not outline roles are responsibilities of MPs. However in my experience of interacting with MPs, I have outlined some traits of a ‘rock-star’ MP.
Inspired by Buzz-feed style rankings, I am sharing with you the top 5 traits that I feel make a MP a ‘rock-star’.
- Rockstar MPs pay attention in Parliament and engage intelligently. Just showing up in Parliament is not enough.
Even those of us who don’t want Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha channel can recognize a well-prepared MP who has done his/her research and knows the content. They often have a speech written out, carry a passion in their voice and a stern look on their face. They quote numbers and case studies. They stand out. Rock-star MPs kick it up a notch and begin to engage intelligently, knowing fully well that just coming to Parliament is not enough.
- Rock-star MPs work for their constituents. Gone are the days of only spending your MPLAD.
We have dealt with a gamut of MPs and the once who are truly rock-stars are the once who think about what they can do to make their constituency better. Opening colleges, bringing hospitals, installing solar lamps, digging ponds, launching digital computer vans, bringing industry and launching railway stations are few of the many things we have seen MPs do. Gone are the days where spending all your MPLAD was sufficient. Now voters don’t hesitate to ask, “what have you done for me in the past 5 years?” and the amazing MPs answer “a lot.”
- Rock-star MPs are informed in their opinions (especially on television). They don’t babble.
Everyone today has a television and all of us judge when you are on it. It is not sufficient to hold your party line. You have to be eloquent about why you hold it and what compelling evidence you have for it. Repeatedly the MPs who are most thoroughly prepared have stood out, even in the midst of a screaming match (you know the tv show I am talking about). Being well informed is a pivotal part of being a MP.
- Rock-star MPs know people are watching. Always!
In a good month, the news releases at least two stories where MPs have blurted something publically without knowing they were being recorded (most of these are sexist remarks and often so abominable that you can’t help but wonder why one would say this). In the day and age of electronic media there is no such thing called ‘off-the-record’ and our rock-star MPs know it. Amongst those we have worked with, I have noticed a strong decorum and composure over the content of their conversation. They measure their words and recognize that they are leaders.
The secret ingredient to being a rock-star is caring about your profession. In a day where environmentalists, actors, singers, police officers, army men and women and social workers all come together to serve the public through the Parliament, the once who stand out are the once who truly care about their role as a MP.
These are some of my opinions. If you want to add more tweet to me @rwitwika
*Please note: This blog is personal and does not represent the view of the institution.