With the election inching closer candidates are in fierce competition to woo voters. They are reaching out to voters with various promises. This has kept the voters very busy as well. General people in Mahottari are seen busy figuring out who would sweep the polls this time.
In this context, Mahesh Kumar Das of Republica talked with some voters from varied backgrounds about the aspects they will consider while casting their votes. Excerpts:
Krishna Chandra Choudhary, school principal
The candidate who knows the ground reality of the people, who has empathy with them or has the strength required to address their problem, will be my choice. It’s a known fact that just making tall promise, nothing will happen.
One has to have the zeal, vision and political willingness to perform and fulfill their promises. We are in need of leaders who can focus on development as rapid development is the need of the time.
This alone can give us employment and all other crucial things we have fallen short of. So, the people here are eager to vote for a person who feels like a real leader.
Manoj Sah, businessman
This time, I am going to vote for Madeshi party. Earlier, I voted for Congress and UML, and even Maoists. But this time, I have made firm commitment to my self of supporting a Madesh based party. I am actually upset by the other parties. They had promised a lot.
Look at their agenda, they speak anything. And when it comes to delivering, they do nothing. I am fed up of them. If they are not going to address our problems then why should we support them? We are going to vote for leaders from our own community.
We can at least make them accountable later. Moreover, I think that Madeshi leaders will definitely have better understanding of our issues. We want Mahottari to be one of the most developed districts and we hope that Madeshi party will do it.
Ashok Karki, social activist
I am going to support a candidate, who is honest, committed and has leadership quality. Mahottari district has lots of problems. We are entangled in this and that. Our youths are mostly working in the gulf countries.
Our women are still deprived of all the privileges that a woman is entitled to. The society is backward. We are really poor and helpless. Without a real leadership, nothing is going to change here. We have to practice the culture of awarding good leaders and punishing the bad one. At least, we can make them accountable for their poor performance and boycott them in the next election. I feel that we must use our voting rights wisely. If we choose right person, things will be far better. Or else, it’s going to remain worse. I am urging people to vote for the right candidate.
Bikash Kumar Jha, student
This is the first time I am going to vote in the parliamentary and provincial elections. I am very excited and want to contribute in development of the nation. Prior to this, I had cast vote in local level elections. It is a huge responsibility, as well as a big opportunity for people to shape their government, their country.
Every place has its own problems and its own strength. Our place has very poor road conditions. It’s pathetic. So, I want to vote for a leader who can address such problems. Besides that we have serious problem unemployment.
Youths are in dilemma. Even those who want to stay and do something in their own country are not encouraged. Our leaders must have a vision to retain youths here.
Ajay Kumar Sah, businessman
I am going to vote for candidates who are genuinely concerned about our situation and are committed to the development of the towns and villages here.
One who claims to be our leader must have real knowledge of all the troubles that we face every day. We need projects that promote agriculture.
We have been lagging behind others, even though we have fertile lands. So, I want a leader who can develop infrastructures for irrigation, farming facilities, among others.
Binod Mandal, social worker
I want to vote for Madeshi leader this time. Madhesi party must win from here. I feel that they are going to do something for Madhes.
Only Madhesi can well understand the problems that we face. This time, Madhesi party will clearly win as many people are thinking exactly as I am thinking. We are going to give chance to Madhesi party. Other parties are never going to understand our sentiment.
Balaram Shrestha, hotelier
I will vote for the candidates who look genuine and earnest. I feel that whoever is going to work for the overall welfare of Madhes should come to power. The politics of division is not good.
We all must be in favor of development of our place and country. Look at the plight of our headquarters Jaleshwor. It is the headquarters for name sake.
It does not have even the minimum facility. Roads are dilapidated. We need real change and for that we need real leaders.
Sudish Sah, social activist
I am going to support candidates who are capable of contributing to the holistic development of the society. We have two groups of people, haves and haves not. There is a huge economic gap. In Madhes, there are still many ill social practices. We must choose a leader who understands the root cause of such problems and has the willpower to fight. Or else, we are never going to develop as a society.
The leaders who stay in the capital never come to us after they win elections. It is only during elections that they visit us. We have to actively discriminate between genuine and phony leaders.
Identity politics has become another problem in Madhes and we must be aware that this is not going to do good to us in the long run. This is very unfortunate. We must choose leaders who understand this well and are against it.
Anil Sah, social activist
Whoever is going to work selflessly for people will be our choice. No matter what they promise during the election, they are simply not going to fulfill later. So, we are not going to consider their achievements so far while selecting.
We have to see their work and then see if they can be trusted. We have huge potential for developing tourism, agriculture, commercial industries. But until and unless we have a capable leadership, we will remain just the same.
So, we want leader who love Madhes from their heart and will make it beautiful place.