“Most of my growing up years revolved around looking after my children and farming, which was a choice I gladly made. I never thought that a small-town woman like me, from a socially and economically backward village, would get an opportunity to become the Sarpanch and change the lives of thousands of people positively. It was truly a blessing in disguise as I was elected as the first woman sarpanch of Gram panchayat in Mannevari Turkapally village after my husband’s untimely demise.
I was born in a lower-middle-class family in Baswapur village of Bhuvanagiri district. As a child, our house, which could barely accommodate 10 of us, including my 7 siblings, was my everything. Even though we were majorly into farming, my mother ensured that all of us get educated at least till high school. It was a normal practice in rural areas back then to get married at an early age so I couldn’t say no to my father’s decision. Even though I got married at the early age of 13, I was fortunate enough to get a kind-hearted and progressive husband who had always respected my views.
I moved to my in-law’s house later and continued farming in the village.
My husband, Late Talari Ramulu was into shoeing cattle work. Even though we belonged to a humble background, he had decided to enter into politics and got elected as a sarpanch on account of his nature and personality. He took it upon himself to develop the backward village for the first time in 50 years. He didn’t mind spending his own money for the development of the village. While most of his initiatives were successful, his untimely death due to an accident was a shocker for every one of us in the village. That’s when I decided to continue his good work and got re-elected with a huge margin.
As sarpanch, I had waged a battle against the severe water crisis in the village and put in all the efforts to eradicate drought. That’s one of the most memorable moments during my tenure as a sarpanch. Another major problem was the weekly bazaar held on the busy Turkapally – Yadadri road which led to many accidents in the past. To bring a solution to this problem, I took an initiative and allotted separate land for this bazaar. I am also proud of the fact that I was able to bring in the public transportation and bus stand to my village. I along with the Government officials and other elected representatives, worked hard in acquiring a building for the Mandal Prajaparishad (MPDO) and Mandal Revenue offices (MRO). Apart from this, we had also worked on the construction of public toilets, and houses for those below the poverty line.
I made sure every child in the village attains a quality education during their high school. Looking back at the struggle I fought for the people, I am proud to say I was able to do justice during my term as an elected representative. I am now back to work, as a farmer and a daily wage laborer who strives to make her ends meet.”
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