Condominium associations have racked in a lot of money by charging candidates who wanted to paste election posters and distribute pamphlets. Some candidates alleged that these associations have encouraged corruption by not letting candidates reach residents directly.
Candidates in New Gurgaon wards, which mainly consist of high-rise buildings, faced hurdles while trying to paste banners and distribute pamphlets to residents. "The condominium associations charge exorbitant fees, the highest being Rs 5000, by Regency Park 2," said Amandeep Singh of ward No. 34.
The RWAs of most apartment societies did not allow candidates to meet residents, say candidates. Several RWAs as a matter of policy do not allow banners or posters on their premises as they do not want to be associated with any party.
"Condominiums such as Hamilton, Sahara Green, Oakwood and Beverly Park 2 did not let us meet residents. Even when we went to meet our friends, we were stopped at the gate," said Rama Rani Rathee of ward No. 34. With election expense capped at Rs 75,000 by the Election Commission, and condominiums charging anything between Rs 1,200 to Rs 5,000 from candidates to carry out their campaign, it is a hard life for poll contestants.
Candidates complain that such “overcharging” creates a negative impact because residents themselves want their problems heard by authorities.
But since RWAs have put a hurdle on direct interaction, the reach of candidates has been reduced greatly for the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon elections.