Tourist attraction Mandvi is creating a high chance of tight battle between BJP and Congress and it can open the gate of opportunity for Congress.
Team ‘Jan Ki baat’ stopped its election caravan in Mandvi, Gujarat. Reporter Jay Ji and Shadab khan did a deep ground reporting and an outstandingg live reporting from the beautiful beach of Mandvi. After digging further, we saw a great political bipolirasation taking place in Mandvi. Congress played very well in this area and constructed a equal ground with BJP. Complaint about slow development, GST & Demonetization are there and Mandavi people may get closer to Congress a little more. Therefore Mandavi may be a game changer in Kutch region.
56 km south from the regional capital Bhuj, Mandvi is a significant area of Kutch region. It was an important part of old Maharaj(king) of Kutch. It attracts tourists from all over the world and during our reporting we met a couple who had come to Mandavi from Germany. They were enjoying their tea at a small tea stall on a broken wooden bench. We did not miss the chance to get a perspective of Mandvi. They told us that how they got influenced by Gujarati culture and beautiful beach of Mandvi. They also suggested to make it more clean and visitor friendly.
After getting a glimpse of foreign perspective about Gujarat and Kutch we proceeded further with our election reporting. We found a corn market and a dealer was proposing bet for wheat. As he finished we went to him and asked about Mandi and farmers condition in Mandvi. He told us how farmers were struggling to get appropriate value of their crops. However he denied any bad impact of GST and Demonetization. After getting views of some corn traders who were quite satisfied with BJP we moved further. We got to meet some autodrivers, tea vendors and local public. Most of them blamed BJP for slow development in Mandvi. They looked eager to bring up a change in Gujarat this time around. They were also supportive of Rahul Gandhi’s Navsarjan yatra.
Mandvi has a lot of beautiful places and have some tourist attraction. A great temple of Bhagwan Swaminarayan is situated in the middle of the city. Also some parks and lakes were there to pay a visit. After taking an overview of these areas, we headed towards the famous beach of Mandvi. Often called the people’s attraction through all over the world. There were some camel owner who offered a ride on sands alongside the Arabian sea. We spoke with an old camel owner who had seen many Governments in Gujarat and told about all his experience and also all the bitter truth of Gujarat from the unfortunate riots of 2002 to deadliest Earthquake in 2001. He told us that he believed only in Congress government. However he showed some concern about BJP, and felt worry that it may come in power yet again. He told us that traders and small businessmen will favor BJP and it may win again. “A month ago Rupani came here in a beach festival and during that festival all the vendors present on the beach were ordered to move their small shops to a place far away from the beach and we hardly managed our daily bread.” The old camel owner said.
Eventually we went live from the beautiful beach of Mandvi and we got to interact with tourists and local small vendors of Nariyal walas, camel owners, tea vendors and thele walas. We got a mixed view on BJP and Congress. Small fruit sellers and tea vendors talked about negative effect of GST and Demonetization. They talked about corruption also. However people praised BJP government for its development works.
Mandvi has been a BJP influenced seat for some years now but Congress has managed to make it tough in recent years. This time Congress ha managed to get support of half of the voters and some wrong policies mentioned by public may open a small gate for Congress to Kutch.
Story by : Shadab Khan & Sparsh Upadhyay