TALK ABOUT Mullanpur, and new real estate projects come to the mind. However, the coming up of real estate projects at Mullanpur has failed to bring any development to its nearby villages. When the state goes to polls on February 4, people living at Garib Das village near Mullanpur will cast their votes with a hope to get their problems of roads, electricity and unemployment addressed.
From the young to the old, people of Garib Das village, which falls under Kharar constituency, complain that the government has taken steps to develop Mullanpur, but villages like Garib Das have been “neglected”.
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“The condition of roads in this village is very bad. There is an issue of sewerage as well,” says Simranjeet Singh, 19, a local resident, who is excited about voting for the first time.
A visit to the village reveals that it has poor roads, a garbage dump near residential houses, and youths without jobs. A piece of “disputed” land, now turned into a small lake, is filled with sewerage water raising worries about diseases.
“This garbage is lying inside the village. No government official is taking any step to clear this garbage,” says Avtar Singh, a villager, pointing to a heap of garbage lying in the area.
Another villager claims that a long-pending demand to set up a community centre is yet to be fulfilled. “This village needs a community centre. Currently, we have to book marriage palaces for holding functions,” says another villager, requesting anonymity.
Many other local residents complain about less development in the area. “I have two sons and one of them has completed his degrees. There are no jobs and he is sitting idle at home,” says a villager. “We have been seeing all the parties for a long time now. This time I guess the village will give a chance to a new party. We still don’t have good roads, electricity here.”
“On the main highway, many flyovers have been constructed by the government. Roads are properly constructed. But this village has been completely ignored by the government,” says another villager. “The present MLA says that he couldn’t do any development here, because the SAD-BJP is running the government.”
Congress MLA Jagmohan Singh Kang alleges that “my constituency was completely neglected by the government, because my party was different”. “No development work was done by the (SAD-BJP) government in my constituency. This time, I am sure Congress will form the government and we will do more developmental work. All the development work has been done by me only,” he says.
However, the Aam Aadmi Party blames the state government for neglecting the area. “This entire constituency has been neglected and it has been ruined. The government has not done anything for the development of this constituency. Not only Garib Das village, all the villages have been neglected,” says Kanwar Sandhu, who is the AAP candidate from Kharar. “We already have plans for the entire constituency.”