For Mohammed Shaikh, who has been driving his rickshaw for over a decade, the election is merely a formality. Money, according to him, can buy votes.
He talked about other things as well, like unemployment, saying that even educated people were not getting jobs and hence, even they were willing to work for smaller wages.
What did he think about the sitting MLA from the Shiv Sena, Trupti Sawant? She was voted in through a by-election in 2015 after her husband, the then MLA from 2014, died suddenly. This time she had not got a ticket and was actually campaigning for herself as an Independent! She hadn’t been that active, Shaikh explained, and that is probably the reason why she was not nominated again.
He has a bit to say about the garbage that is thrown all over the place, but he mostly blamed the public for the polluted surroundings in Vandre East. He believes that it is not just the government that should be working over it but also the public.
An 80-year-old resident of Kalanagar, spoke of all the issues and problems the people of that area face.
For one, there are the floods that occur every year and cause destruction, making the area filthier than ever. For another, there is the slow growth of development, reflected in old shops that rarely get renovated and all the other old buildings as well.
He described how congested the area is, about the traffic which always creates chaos in the place. And he described his own disinterest in the elections. It doesn’t matter who wins, he declared, only political parties will benefit
Written by Journalism students Martina Bhoya & Annet Anandraj
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