Worth Rs 42,000,67-yr-old Dutta is ‘rich’ in popularity

Two wooden planks joint together form the bed of 67-year-old Ramesh Dutta.

Written by Pragya Kaushika | New Delhi | Published:April 2, 2012 2:07 am

Two wooden planks joint together form the bed of 67-year-old Ramesh Dutta. Living in a government quarter,Dutta might be among the poorest candidates contesting this municipal polls.

Dutta’s affidavit,submitted with the State Election Commission,shows his assets as savings of Rs 6,000 in a bank account and Rs 36,000 as cash-in-hand.

An elected councillor in 1971,Dutta claims to be close to the Gandhi family and has many photographs with former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

The Congress party worker will be contesting the civic polls from Minto Road. He has support from the Muslim population of the area and hopes to win.

A former deputy Mayor of MCD,Dutta remembers the days when the municipality was looked down upon.

“Politicians used to call us sanitary workers. But we knew what municipality means to the city,” says Dutta.

He says he has earned the goodwill of the residents through hard work over the years.

“I made a Nehru Park with many amenities,but it was destroyed during the development of the city. Now,only the park remains — the zoo,boat club and recreational centre are gone. If I win,I will redevelop that for school children,” says Dutta,dressed in a torn shirt and green pajamas.

He used to run a rented tea stall in RK Puram,but it was taken away from him two years ago.

Dutta says did not marry as he believed that no woman would have liked the way he lives.

“I never earned anything in my life except the relationship with these people who live with me,” says Dutta.

He says his is an open house for anyone who wishes to come in,sit,sleep or eat. The quarter has been allotted to one of his relatives.

Mohammed Aitbar Ahmed,President of Samudayik Vikas Samiti says Dutta is an old friend of his.

“We remember the days when he stopped the PM’s car to inaugurate a roundabout in Connaught Place. He was there for every poor who came to him for help,” says Ahmed.

Noting the support Dutta has from the Muslims,the BJP has fielded Atif Rashid from the area.

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