Bhubaneswar: It is only a matter of a few hours before people’s decision will see the light of the day. The final result of two long months of voting will be out and we shall know our next leader. While the Central government is important, a right state government is also integral. The previous government in power did what it could and the next five years, will be another struggle to improve the state.
We spoke to some young students and first-time voters about their expectation from the government and the changes they would like to see in Bhubaneswar in the next five years.
Swikruti Mishra (student)- We have always only expected a proper atmosphere for the development of education for every category of people that will lead to a proper development of the state and the country as well. It has been 19 years of a particular government and there is no doubt a lot of good changes took place. There still remains a burden regarding unemployment and education. I really hope that caste reservation system is removed and a proper channel is linked for the employment and education of every category of people.
After that comes the city and its territorial and inner development such as underground cabling, which will be helpful during cyclones or other calamities and of course tree plantation, for the green cover was destroyed in the cyclone.
Devnandan Mahapatra (student)- From the government, I sincerely hope better financial plans as debts have been increasing. There certainly should be more focus on SMSEs in the next term and a continuation in the promotion of the start-up culture. I definitely do not have a personal problem with it but I suppose, our chief minister should try and learn a little Odia. It has been 20 long years! It will only benefit him to connect better with the people he governs.
Besides, in the city, I think the Mo Bhubaneswar project is going great and should definitely remain the same or get better. MoCycle is a great initiative but needs a lot of changes. We need more maintenance for the cycles, and no cars and bikes parked on the cycles tracks, please. If cycles becomes a part of the traffic, things will get easier. Last, we lost all our parks to Fani. The restoration work must not buckle. Also, our state should look into the waste management models of Surat and Chandigarh and do something about it.
Barnali Hota (student, singer)- Honestly, I have lost expectations from the government but it should try and fulfill whatever is on the agenda. Promises of giving this and that to farmers must be realised and executed properly. These should be put down to work. I firmly believe our state needs strict rules like many other states – from waste management, to crime, to traffic. The moment there are heavy fines and strict punishments and all of this is executed well, things will be smoother in our city and state. Apart from this, I want my Bhubaneswar to become green again.
1) Sanitation in public toilets.
2) Slums still persist in the capital city. I think slum dwellers should be provided better job opportunities and also a better place to stay.
3) Government procedures take a lot of time. Recently, I faced a lot of trouble for getting a mere certificate. They give excuses like they had a short circuit, lost all data, etc. Govt offices here are too slow and need to be more modernised.
4) Also, we need better teachers in government schools. Better teachers and cheaper access to study material for children and also for those in senior schools
5) Medical facilities (government) are not so good at Bhubaneswar. We are sent to Cuttack or even places outside Odisha for mere treatments. Not everyone can afford to go out of the state. We need better doctors here for any critical treatment.
6) There need to be better facilities and technology for people who clean the sewage.
Sailesh Patnaik (student) – I was going through the NITI Ayog report on SDGs and how Indian states are performing. Odisha is a poor performer in many SDG goals. The quality of education needs to increase. There should be some basic support to transportation and hospitality services for tourism. For example, we have buses from Bhubaneswar to Puri. But what about to Konark or the Buddhist triangle? There are so many things that our state can do. Underground cables being one of them.
Dibya Rath (student)- To be honest, I am quite satisfied with the current government. Even then, the main problems in Odisha are unemployment and poverty, so the upcoming government should do something to overcome these or tackle the whole hungama surrounding these.
I hope the government is listening because our young generation has a lot to say and a lot of innovative ideas to display. Good luck to all the parties, nonetheless.