This isn't the democracy we dreamed of

The husbands photos need to go from women candidates election postersAnisha Sheth
news Saturday, August 22, 2015 - 19:36

Despite half of seats reserved for women in the Bengaluru civic polls, the men need to be in the picture, literally, if their wives are contesting in their stead.

Mamata Saravana is contesting as independent candidate from the Vijnana Nagara ward (No 81). When you pass by former corporator M Saravana’s ward office in Ulsoor near the Halasuru Police Station, you find that campaign posters for Mamata show M Saravana too, almost as if they are contesting the elections together.

Ek se saath ek free. One object free with another.

Posters of Mamata Saravana, near Halasuru Police Station

This year, for the first time Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike has half its seats reserved for women, but it appears that political parties and politicians are not really imbibing the spirit of ensuring that.

If the posters of Mamata Saravana are anything to go by, a lot more work needs to be done before women can win elections on their own strength. Mamata was recently expelled from the Congress and has contested the BBMP elections as an independent candidate.

Seen in the background is the office of M Saravana, former councillor of Ward 81, Vignana Nagar, near Halasuru Polce Station

Until this year, 33 percent of seats were reserved for women candidates. When The News Minute called the numbers of some women councillors of the last BBMP Council who were randomly selected, often, it was the husband of the women who answered the phone and asked if they could help the caller.

Read: Hello, this is the councillor’s husband . How may I help you?

In a past interview with The News Minute, Executive Trustee of Civic Kathyayini Chamraj had said that the current system was the right of women, but that citizens must ensure that husbands or male relatives did not overshadow the councilors and turn them into elected representatives for namesake.

Read: Will increased seats for women in BBMP simply give way to more ‘proxy’ candidates?

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