Mumbai: Dahisar people want a change

Mumbai: People of Dahisar are upset with the Bharatiya Janata Party's sitting Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Manisha Ashok Chaudhary. Chaudhary, who most believe has done no work, has still got a ticket and despite criticism is relaxed as she goes about her constituency asking for votes. She claims she has no opposition even the second time round.

However, the people in Dahisar are upset with her for ignoring development work in their constituency. People living in slums too have complained of being deprived of basic amenities like proper roads, clean drinking water and electricity. The condition of the slums in Ganapat Patil Nagar is pathetic as people here live without power, water and proper roads.

Moreover, despite the tall claims by the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi of making India open defecation free, there are no public toilets in this entire area. There are only three private pay-toilets and the worse to be affected are women, who are compelled to find isolated spots in the open for defecation.

Chaudhary, however, refuted saying she has provided water, electricity and basic facilities to the people and they are happy. 

Residents of the Ganpat Patil Nagar allege Chaudhary has forgotten them. "After elections, Chaudhary has forgotten us voters. She has never visited our area at the time of campaigning, since she knows we will question her why she has done nothing in our area? We have to purchase drinking water and there is no electricity in our area, there are only few electric meters and others have taken illegal connections. We are paying for illegal electricity and water tankers," said a few angry residents.

People said come elections, they have seen workmen pretending to lay a few new pipelines promising slum dwellers of providing water to them. The minute the elections conclude, the pipes are taken away. "Till now the coconut has been broken 14 times for the construction work of toilets, laying new water pipeline, but till now no work has started and its been a few years," said a senior citizen of the area.

Congress party on the other hand, has given a ticket go their loyal party worker Arun Sawant, who is a first timer for any form of election. He has been a devout party worker since last 22 years. Sawant, confident of his prospects, has said that people will put the BJP in its place.

"The party has paid me for my loyalty. I have been a worker for the last 22 years and has given me the ticket to contest. People are fed up with BJP's false promises of giving better infrastructure while they have failed to give even basic amenities. I will work for the people and will focus on ensuring the poor get food and provide proper medical facilities," said Sawant. 

He further alleged, Chaudhary has collected money from the people promising them temporary connections for electricity and water tankers. 

Interestingly, another candidate, Radheshyam Vishwakarma, from the Nationalist Janshakti Party, is contesting for the first time. He said that the fact that no work has been done in their constituency prompted him to oppose Chaudhary.

The total number of voters in Dahisar constituency is 2,54,663, of which half the number of voters are from slums mainly – Sai Baba Nagar, Shivaji Nagar, Eksar Dongri, Shastri Nagar and Ganpat Patil Nagar.

Know your candidate

Manisha Ashok Chaudhary (BJP): Sitting MLA, Chaudhary faces people's ire for not doing any development works in their area.

Arun Sawant (22): A devout party worker for the last 22 years, Sawant is a first timer for any form of election.

Issues: Lack of clean drinking water, electricity and toilets

--Vikas Nag

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