THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The city is host to many migrant labourers who have made the capital their home. With elections around the corner, some of them leaving to their home states in the north, . "I cannot afford to take an off from work - I'll lose at least C600 per day. I've a family to feed.
The journey to Assam takes four days," says Dhananjoy Sarkar, a construction worker from Assam. The election in his constituency is on April 23.
"I'm supposed to cast my first vote but there are no train tickets available. I can't afford to pay H16,000 for my trip to Kolkata," says Nisha who works in a saloon at Sasthamangalam.
Chiranjit Varman, a Bengali construction worker says Kerala has become his second home. "I am comfortable in this state. Food and facilities are better. Why must I cast my vote in a place where politicians give no hoots about the citizens," he questions.
Yogesh Deshmukh, a Maharashtrian, works in a food chain. "Our elections got over on April 11. But I hadn't received an off to go back. Also, I did not want to go for elections as the politicians are least bothered in addressing the problems of underprivileged people. The politicians in Kerala make a point to adhere to the promises. At least 50 per cent of the promises are fulfilled. But, the situation in our place is entirely different. Promises are made to get more votes. Neither does the government take initiatives to provide jobs nor do they address the issues of people below the poverty line. Thus I did not find a point in taking leave to cast my vote," he says.
Samar Mandal, an Assamese construction worker will be voting in the elections. "I must vote else politicians come to our houses and create issues. I cannot let my mother and sisters suffer," he says.