News Karnataka
Saturday, December 03 2022
India

For first time, Pvt. Company contests, wins panchayat polls in Kerala

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Tiruvananthapuram: It’s a new experiment in Indian Politics. The Corporate social responsibility arm of a private company has contested and won panchayat elections in a Kerala Village.
Twenty20, the social responsibility arm of the Anna-Kitex Group of Companies, a leading private company in Kerala, has won panchayat elections in a Kerala village. They won in the Kizhakkambalam gram panchayat where they said, they decided to field candidates in all the 19 wards of the village, to gain more control over civic infrastructure. They won 17. It was the ruling UDF’s bastion until now. The 19 booths saw over 90% votes being cast.

Last month, the company had announced that it would contest the polls, as it was fed up of the alleged harassment from the panchayat officials.

The company has earlier declared that it wants to transform the village of around 8,500 families into a model village with the best amenities, but that its work was being hampered by local political leaders cutting across party lines.

“We are moving with a vision to transform Kizhakkambalam into the best panchayat of the country by 2020. The group has invested around `28 crore in the last two years for development projects in the panchayat. We are hopeful of winning 70 per cent of the votes,” Sabu M Jacob, Managing Director of Kitex Garments had told The New Indian Express in October.

The outgoing panchayat president however, has said that while the company had implemented several infrastructure projects such as roads and housing projects, its production unit had caused pollution. The contest and the victory set a precedent for a new development model, but it could have important ramifications and significant implications for traditional politics.

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