File photo: Jyoti Vikas.(HT photo)
File photo: Jyoti Vikas.(HT photo)

‘Service is in my blood’: Chattisgarh woman beats all odds to become Kerala local body poll candidate

Jyoti survived an accident, an amputation, had to leave her studies but beat all the odds to now contest in Kerala’s local body polls in Palakkad.
By Ramesh Babu | Edited by Sparshita Saxena | Hindustan Times, Thiruvananthapuram
UPDATED ON DEC 06, 2020 09:52 PM IST

She speaks chaste Malayalam with Hindi slang but her speech is unstoppable sans stammering. The story behind Chattisgarh’s Jyoti Vikas, 30, becoming a candidate in Kerala local body elections in Palakkad district, is nothing short of moving and poignant.

A nursing student, Jyoti was travelling on a bus to Durg in 2010. In half slumber, she suddenly noticed that a truck coming from the opposite direction was about to hit the bus. A young man was dozing off in front of her seat in the bus and in fraction of seconds she pushed him aside saving him. She was badly injured in the process and later doctors had to sever her right hand.

“I spent 12 days in the hospital and doctors said if the hand was not amputated it may have led to severe infection and threaten my life. My world turned upside down. The saved man was unknown to me, a complete stranger but he was moved by my plight and proposed for marriage. I got married to PV Vikas, a CISF constable hailing from Kerala in 2011,” she narrated how she landed in a remote village in Kerala.

Jyoti is a native of Bacheli in Chattisgarh’s Dantewada district and Vikas was posted in the same district when the accident took place.

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Currently, her husband Vikas is posted at Coimbatore airport. The couple have two children. She said she could not pursue her nursing studies after the accident and marriage a year later. But she feels it is time to pay back to the society which accepted her wholeheartedly.

“Service is in my blood. When local body elections approached, local BJP leaders proposed me as a candidate but I was initially reluctant. My husband and his family members, however, prodded me to take on the battle. This is a challenging experience,” she said.

She said she is a big fan of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “I find him a man of high integrity and stature. Every one must strengthen his hands,” said Jyoti who is locked a in a fierce three-cornered contest in Kollangode block panchayat. Local BJP leaders said her connection with people was instant. “Her candidature is a symbol of national integration. She is a big hit among workers,” said N Babu, senior BJP leader of the area.

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