KOHALPUR, June 17: Unlike other parties, CPN (Maoist center) in Nepalgunj has chosen three candidates with physical disabilities to contest in the upcoming local elections. The party has elected such candidates in wards 3, 7 and 19 of the sub-metropolitan city.
Mohammad Aayub Siddiqui of CPN (Maoist center) will be contesting for the post of Nepalgunj-3 chief while Kalim Rai has been selected to compete as a member of ward-7. Similarly, Gapphar Khan has also filed his candidacy for the member of the ward committee in Nepalgunj-19, Basdevpur. All three of them have some kind of physical disabilities.
Among the 24 political parties registered in District Election Office (DEO), no other parties have chosen physically challenged candidates for election. According to Siddiqui, the Maoist Party has always given priority to candidates like him in Nepalgunj-3. He said he is really thankful to the party for motivating and encouraging him to take part in the elections despite his disability. These days Siddiqui is busy campaigning for the elections. According to him, if he gets elected as chief, his agendas will be cleanliness, drainage, blacktopping of roads, disable-friendly infrastructures and to provide adequate services to women, children, disabled and elderly people. Siddiqui, who is a former combatant of the then CPN (Maoist), is busy making door-to-door visit along with the cadres and leaders of his party in his motorbike.
Kalim Rai, who has filed his candidacy for membership of ward-6, says he is very much impressed by the agenda of his party. If elected, he has a great desire to work for the rights of the disabled and marginalized communities.
“I am really grateful toward the party members who have treated us no less than others. I should try my best to woo as much voters as possible as I can't just let them down,” said Rai. Since a few days, he has been having a hectic schedule due to poll activities.
Similarly, party provided ticket to Gaphar Khan to contest for the membership of Nepalgunj Sub-metropolitan city-19, Basudevpur. These days he has intensified his meetings with the cadres and leaders of CPN-Maoist in order to make necessary preparations for the elections.
“If I get elected, I want to do something different which has not been done by anyone yet in our locality,” Khan said, adding, “This is the time to prove people that people with disabilities are equally capable and can do everything that normal people can. All we need is opportunity.”
Meanwhile, district coordinator of CPN (Maoist center) IP Kharel has clearly announced to directly give tickets to disabled, women, Dalits and people from the marginalized communities in the elections without any competition. He further informed that his party is trying its best to make such people win by projecting them in promotional activities.
Even though the government had made it mandatory for all parties to include members from Dalit community, no other party has taken that into account.