Nita Kanwar Sodha a Hindu migrant from Pakistan who got Indian citizenship just 5 months back in September 2019 is now the sarpanch of Natwada village in Tonk district. Nita won the election by 365 votes. Voting and counting for the first phase of Panchayat elections took place in Rajasthan on Friday.
This was the first time when Nita not just cast her vote but also contested in the election as an Indian citizen. She had been living in India for the last 19 years and had applied for citizenship 12 years ago.
There were seven other contestants in the fray and Nita defeated them to win by 365 votes. People of the village gathered outside the family house and cheered for her when the results were declared. “This is a victory of the people of the village. It is now my turn to return the love by performing my duty towards them. The blessings of my father-in-law and the support of my husband and family gave me strength,” said Nita to FPJ on the phone.
Nita is a graduate from the Sophia College, Ajmer and was married to Punya Pratap Karan of Narwada, Tonk in 2011. Her father-in-law Lakshman Karan Rathore is a two time sarpanch from Natwada village and has been instrumental in encouraging Nita to contest the elections.
The first phase of voting for Panchayat elections in Rajasthan were held on Friday. Voting was held for 2,726 gram panchayats. Over 11,000 EVM machines were used in the polls. As many as 31 senior officers of the IAS and RAS cadre were given the responsibility of ensuring free, fair and peaceful voting. The second phase of polling will be held on January 22.