K.V. Prasad

`The people want a clean administration'

COIMBATORE: They are already getting a taste of what is in store for them. Candidates of some wards in the Coimbatore Corporation are facing a tough electorate, as evident from the candidate-voter interface being held by citizens' groups.

People are asking the candidates to take a pledge to shun corruption even before the former set out to vote. Stressing that councillors should be repository of public faith, the printed pledge they are asked to read out at the interface has the words "Naan lanjam vaanga matten" (I will not take bribe) as an undertaking.

Voluntary bodies

The face-to-face has been organised by voluntary bodies -- Siruthuli, Residents Awareness Association of Coimbatore (RAAC), Kural and Karam - that are working for planned development, water resources conservation and sanitation in the city.

The public also want to be assured of a clean administration, says RAAC vice-president G. Soundarrajan. "This pledge has been added to the list as the people want a clean administration," he says. It is not being thrust upon the candidates. But, they are being made to feel obliged to give such an undertaking to the people who vote with great expectations of transparency in administration as a vital recipe for speedy development.

Though the last of the pledges, the eighth one strongly calls for smooth and productive conduct of Council meetings.

"We have recorded every pledge. We have also told the candidates that even after they win, we will hold a mock polling after sometime to rate their performance," says Mr. Soundarrajan. "And, we have also asked them whether they will resign if they fail in the mock voting though there is no law providing for that."

There is a pledge for the voters too. "They should pledge to vote a good candidate and vote without caste, religious, linguistic and party affiliations. And, first of all, everyone should vote. Every person should also prevail upon neighbours and friends to do so," says Mr. Soundarrajan.