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Tsirang has a sixth contender

Former BPCL senior manager is the latest aspirant for a seat in the upper house 
Elections 2013 The man is joining the fray with more than 13 votes already confirmed in his name.

Kamal Bahadur Gurung, from Mendrelgang in Tsirang, decided to take part in the upcoming National Council elections, after being assured of support and encouragement from his 80-year-old mother, 11 siblings, his wife and 18-year-old daughter.

Apart from that, the sixth council aspirant, to emerge from Tsirang, said he knows the people of the dzongkhag well, having worked for almost five years there.

The 45-year-old former senior manager with Bhutan Power corporation ltd. also claims to come with knowledge of all the districts in the country, having worked on rural electrification project in these places over the years.

Possessing a master’s degree in electrical engineering from Thailand in 2007, he had started off as a civil servant some 23 years ago.

“I’m leaving a well-paid job to serve the nation in a bigger way,” he said.

He said, going by his rural experience, an estimated 35 percent of the rural population was still living under national poverty line and these people felt “abandoned and voiceless”.

“Of course, they got basic amenities like road, water supply and communication facilities, but they remain poor, some without land or proper civil registry,” he said.

Youth were also facing a lot of problems, such as unemployment, while others were leaving villages to find jobs.  It was only the village elders and barren fields left behind.  There were other problems like human-wildlife conflict and cash crop diseases.

If he wins, Kamal wants to address all these needs and more.

Having a number of candidates contesting from his district, Kamal said, doesn’t dissuade him.

“In fact, more the better,” he said. “But to be a good legislator, one should have maturity, capability, credibility and good working experience.”

He said it was about choosing a representative, who will decide what is good or bad for the country, so having good potential and experience would count.

Sonam Choden

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