I came across some reports how the politicians served their own villages when in power in ‘Metro India’. The stories related to Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Yadav and Nitish Kumar.
As reported, Nitish had been indifferent or knowingly avoided doing anything special for his own village till now. He could have certainly done many things even as politician in his earlier days with his influence and acquaintances, or when he was an effective cabinet minister in central government during NDA rule.
The cabinet colleagues of Nitish are now falling over each other to make up for Nitish’s neglect and uplift the condition of Kalyanbigha, the ancestral village of Nitish Kumar in Nalanda district. Bihar’s various ministers have promised an Industrial Training Institute (ITI), an Rs 2-crore power substation in the village and an Rs 35-crore grid station at Harnaut nearby, a 12-bed state-of-the-art hospital and a 12- room government higher secondary school. Road construction minister has promised to convert the 8-km single lane road linking the village to NH31 into a double lane.
Lalu had also done the same or a little more for his village, Phulwaria and Rabri for Selar Kalan. A 22-km road to Phulwaria from the district headquarters got built that envied the neighbouring villages. But as the climax, the railway ministry has undertaken an ambitious project to link both the villages through a rail network on the Hathua-Bhatani section and the last Railway budget provided a fund of RS 230 crore for the project. I feel amazed why the system permits this. Should not there be criteria clear enough to avoid such partisan project?
However, all that Lalu had done is nothing in comparison with what Mulayam did and wished to do for Saifai, his village of 4000 people in Etawah: an international-standard air-strip, a 500-bed super specialty hospital, a world class flood-lit cricket stadium, an athletic stadium, a lion safari, and an indoor stadium almost like Talkatora of Delhi. Mulayam wanted a Boeing 747 to land at the airstrip. As usual, Mayawati has shelved all the projects. But how can the money already spent be justified? The airstrip has sucked in Rs 100 crore of taxpayers’ money, and the stadium Rs 50 crore.
I don’t find anything wrong with the basic development work and wish everyone who can, must do this as a minimum for his village. Every legislator must get a high school, an Industrial training Institute, a health care center, and electrification for his village. The legislator must use all the resources at his hand to provide these facilities for his village or for the villages of his mother or wife using the fund that he gets every year. At least, it will mean so many of the villages upgraded.
Anyone who succeeds in life must do something for his own village where he was born and brought up. I was shocked to read a story about the village of Ambanis. Why the village wouldn’t have been one with all facilities, particularly professional schools for training skills to all the boys and girls? Will the Ambanis be any way poorer if they would invest in these facilities for the people of the village?
However, the administrative reform must eliminate the possibility of building a stadium and international airport in some chief minister’s or even prime minister’s village.