HYDERABAD: Colonies and slums in the Secunderabad Cantonment Board limits have got into electoral mood with aspiring contestants launching their campaign even before filing their nominations.
Elections to board will be held on January 11 and nominations have to be filed on December 11 and 12. Though elections are not fought on party symbols, political equations play a major role in the elections.
There are eight wards in the area and aspirants from all parties have started campaigning in the wards. Door-to-door campaigning and padayatras are being witnessed in Bowenpally, Trimulgherry, Kharkhana, Risala Bazar and other areas.
“It might take another week for the parties to announce their candidates. There is just one month for the elections and to connect with every home and voter this time is not sufficient. So instead of waiting for the party’s decision we have started campaigning,” explained V Jai Prakash, who wants to contest from eighth ward and is busy campaigning in Risala Bazar. Jai Prakash, a former board member and vice-president, has the support of the Telugu Desam.
In civic body elections, candidates’ personal relationship with people matters more than party affiliation. Hence the eagerness to reach out to people early, says Jai Prakash.
‘Contestants’ from all parties are on the campaign trail and making their moves to win the backing of their parties. While the Congress and TRS have not officially backed any candidate, TDP and BJP leaders are in discussions to select the candidates to be backed by them as both parties have almost decided to form an alliance.
While contestants are aggressively pursuing their campaign, people are greeting them with complaints about civic problems. While people are complaining about civic issues like lack of proper underground drainage and narrow roads and non-functioning street lights, drinking water scarcity is the main issue in many areas.
“It is ridiculous that areas such as Mudfort, Annanagar Basti and Ambedkarnagar in Ward No. 3, though situated at the centre of the city, are suffering from drinking water shortage. Due to negligence of past board members, the slums in the ward are worst-hit with drinking water not being supplied for even one week. My first priority, if elected, will be to provide regular drinking water,” promised Anita Prabhakar, a contestant supported by TRS, said during her campaign in Annanagar Basti.
While basic amenities top the list of promises, house pattas and construction of community halls are also being promised by some.
There are eight wards and the elected ward members will elect a vice-president. About 1.5 lakh voters are expected to vote in the election this time. The final list of voters will be published on December 6.