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Pradeep Pattanayak

Life for Ramakanta Sahu alias Priya’s has not been easy at all. Yet, with an aim to serve the society, she has chosen a tougher path for herself.

She is contesting for the Sarpanch seat from Rengali Panchayat in Sambalpur district and these days she can be seen hopping villages to garner support for her. 

Till a few days ago, boarding trains, going from compartments to compartments while seeking alms were all in a day’s work for Priya. Getting earful of nasty remarks had become almost a part of her daily life. 
Unlike other candidates, she doesn’t have her followers in tow. Neither does she have enough money to splurge in order to woo the voters. Yet she doesn’t feel dejected. On campaign trail, she strides the dusty village roads with grace and confidence. 
She distributes pushing cards and interacts with the people while trying to understand their problems. 
Asked what prompted to her to trade the electoral route, she says, “I have grown up seeing how politicians after winning elections forget their promises and people’s problems. Greed takes over and they become more concerned about their own families and accumulating money becomes their prime objective. My aim is to serve the society. I am a transgender for whom there is no room for any pecuniary benefits. If I am voted to power, I will stand by my people through their thick and thin. I am confident that people will vote for me.” 
Notably, as many as 14 candidates are vying for Sarpanch post in Rengali Panchayat which comprises 12 Wards. These days, all the candidates are seen leaving no stones unturned to ensure victory. 
It is to be seen what the future has in store for Priya.

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