Koraput, Sep 16
As polling day for urban local body (ULB) elections draws nearer, electioneering has gone into e-mode at Jeypore in Koraput district. Candidates are sending SMSes to voters, seeking support for the September 19 election.
“Though we are conducting door-to-door campaigning and street corner meetings, sending SMSes to voters is fast and economic,” said former Koraput MLA Tara prasad Bahinipati, who is spearheading the Congress campaign at Jeypore.
The candidates have prepared a database of respective voters and are sending them messages at regular intervals. “As only a few days are left for voting day and we have to cover the entire ward two to three times before Tuesday, the last day for electioneering, sending SMSes is the easiest way,” said Akshaya Sahu, a BJP candidate.
District youth president of BJD Dharmendra Adhikari said. “These days, almost everybody has a mobile phone. I am sending around 500 SMSes a day, requesting people to vote for our party.”
SMS has come in handy for independent candidates, who lack the financial and human resources for high-voltage electioneering.
“As I can’t spend huge money on canvassing materials like the political parties are doing, messages are the best option for me to reach out to my voters in quick time with less effort,” said an independent candidate.
Several candidates are also taking help of social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to reach out to voters, although their outreach is limited.
Political observers said candidates are looking for alternative ways after the State Election Commission put a cap on spending. Jeypore municipality has 28 wards with 60,401 voters. However, election will be held for 27 wards as the BJD has won ward no 26 uncontested with the Congress candidate withdrawing his nomination. (PTI)