Haryana is certainly not Number 1- as projected by chief minister (CM) Bhupinder Singh Hooda- in Morni villages where electrification is still a distant dream.
Just 65km from CM’s residence in Chandigarh, these villages which comprises Lasava, Bainska, Bhila, Loharu, Ghata, Peepalwali, Tibba, Neemwala, Seenghwala and many others are still striving to sustain without the electricity and roads in this hilly area.
These villages are so far from the main roads that even candidates haven’t visited them during their election campaigns.
One can’t find fans, lights, television, fridge or washing machine like leisurely things at Maya Devi’s home as there is not even a single power connection in the Lasava village.
Her house comes first after walking for an hour-and-half from the main road.
“Due to no power connection and road connectivity, even our relatives don’t like to visit us. Cooking and having food in darkness during night is part of our life,” she maintains.
Her husband, Hukam Raj, is a farmer. “He recently developed some health problems due to kidney stone and we had to lift him on a bed through the hilly terrain,” she adds.
Adding to the woes, she says as her family’s name was recently cut from the Below Poverty Line (BPL) list, they don’t even get kerosene at subsidy, which is the reason children at home have to study with the help of mustard oil lamps.
“Attempts were made to erect electricity poles in the village about 20 years ago but they are still lying dumped on the ground,” she says, adding, solar panels had been installed by villagers, which give power just for few hours.
“These solar panels don’t function during foggy, rainy or winters seasons,” says Khushi Ram, a farmer, adding that these could produce power for only two hours.
There are as many as 30 houses in Lavasa village that falls in Kalka assembly constituency.
Shobha Ram, another farmer, says, “Due to no power and road connectivity, people feel hesitant to get their daughters married in the village. I am also struggling to get a bride for my younger son.”
Sohan Lal, a mechanic, says, “Politicians make empty promises during elections, get elected, travel in cars with red beacon and forget those who chose them. We are living like slaves.”
He said the Lasava village had tested Chander Mohan (who was earlier with Congress) and Indian National Lok Dal’s Pardeep Chaudhary in the last election, who is the sitting MLA, but nothing has changed.
Lal, who is aware of Bharatiya Janata Party’s emphatic victory in the general elections, is now campaigning for the party. “We want to give BJP a chance,” he says. The situation is worst in Bainska village, which is also without the power. “We have to travel for 3.5 hours on foot to reach our school in Tikkar, which is about 8km from our village,” says Manisha, a Class-10 student and resident of Bainska village.
“An estimate for electrification of these villages has been made and proposal has been sent to the government. It is probably the only area without the electrification in the state,” said SS Phulia, deputy commissioner.