In an interesting confluence of the national sport and city politics, hockey seems to have found its way to the MCD polls this year.
Laxmi Thakur Singhal, who is contesting the civic body elections as an independent candidate, has decided to use her dexterity at the sport to tackle the deeper civic issues.
"I have always associated progress with sports and I have been part of the women's hockey team right from my student days. I have also played at the state level and I think it's time to put my skills to appropriate use in politics," said Singhal (in her mid 30s), who is contesting from Hauz Khas.
However, her passion for the sport goes much deeper to encompass civic and social growth as well.
With the hockey stick and ball “emblematic of numerous civic issues and their solutions”, Singhal is first targeting setting up a sports facility for those children who do not have the wherewithal to hone their athletic skills.
"The hockey stick and ball are representative of the larger civic problems and the weapon for tackling these issues. My first priority will be to ensure that children in my ward have adequate space to play. The well-off people can avail of sports facilities. But for those who cant, there has to be some community provision," added Singhal.
Singhal, who kick-started her political career right from her student days in Delhi University, also aims at working for the betterment of women. Among the numerous other civic issues plaguing the area, she promises to tackle the condition of drains, the permanent traffic snarls and overhanging high tension wires to ensure safety for adjoining houses.
"I have been politically active since 1991 when I became a part of the Delhi University Students Union. Today I'm using all that experience to pitch for change in my ward. Other than working for the children, I give women an award every year to motivate them to excel in what they do best," she said.