BARA, June 11: In the second round of local elections slated for June 28, the locals of northern Bara who have been living a miserable life as squatters for decades are determined to vote for candidates who are willing to offer them shelter.
Squatters of ward 14, 15, 16 and 17of Jitpursimara Sub-metropolitan City have agreed to give their votes to candidates who are willing to solve their problems by managing shelter for them. There are altogether 23 wards in Jitpursimara and almost half of the voters here belong to the squatter's community.
“Though we have been assured of land registration certificate by many candidates and political leaders in the past elections, none of them have done anything for us in reality,” said Uddhav Subedi, whol belongs to the squatter's community of Jitpursimara-16, Katarawa. “They have just used us as vote banks but we are no longer going to support such selfish candidates who are there just to fulfill their vested interests,” he added.
According to him, there are altogether 4,600 voters in ward no 16 of Katarwa and 3,200 of them are squatters.
As the government has given various rights and authorities to the local level representatives, the landless voters have agreed to vote for those candidates who will guarantee them the registration of the land where they have lived for more than forty years. Shelter has been the main agenda for the squatters for the upcoming elections.
As per the details provided by the District Election Office, Bara, there are 2,853 voters in ward 14, 3,171 in ward 15, 4,667 in ward 16 and 3,363 voters in ward 17 of Jitpursimara Sub-metropolitan. It has been found that most of the voters here are living the life of squatters with the hope of getting their land registered.
Shyam Babu Gupta, a representative of the Nepali Congress and a prospective candidate for the mayoral post in Jitpursimara, who had recently organized door-to -door visits, said, “They all complained of not having land registration certificates even after living for years on the same land.” Gupta says that he is genuinely willing to address the demands of the squatters.
There are around 55,700 voters in Jitpursimara and more than 10,000 of them are squatters.