GUWAHATI, April 3 - Gone are the days when popular icons of the glamour world mostly distanced themselves from the real-life issues.
Today, celebrities invariably prefer to walk the distance and make them heard in the corridors of power. And with the all-important Assembly polls round the corner in the State, here is an attempt to read the mind of the voter lying within some of the State�s most adored celebrities.
Celebrated singer Zubeen Garg, who had recently spearheaded a fund-raising campaign for the flood-affected people of the State, said, �Assam cannot afford to lag behind when the world is moving at such a fast pace. This election will be crucial and whoever comes to power must first end corruption, which is a huge menace.�
�We have been talking about the same sets of problems for ages. Time has now come to solve them. We need an energetic lot at the helm of affairs to achieve this,� Zubeen said.
Asked if the ensuing poll is going to be any different, popular singer Angaraag (Papon) Mahanta said, �It should be... The country has gone through some big changes in the past one year, so we don�t know what to expect.�
He further said, �We need a lot of long-term solutions for the issues that have been plaguing the State. The State is going through an interesting time. The issue of illegal migrants is a pressing one, and it needs a concrete�solution. The demographic changes that Assam is going through will be closely linked to what happens in the elections.
�The next government needs to understand Assam as a region, and understand regional sentiments and needs, strengths and weaknesses. It�needs to create a more investor-friendly environment, strengthen infrastructure; but most importantly, should focus on agriculture,� Papon said adding, �I�d like the voters to make informed choices.�
National award-winning filmmaker Munin Barua, who has been championing the cause of the languishing film industry, said, �The young voters will play an important role in this election. As far as our film industry is concerned, there is a lot to be done.�
Actress Prastuti Parashar also opined that the this election will be a very important one. �We need a government in which responsible people will call the shots instead of the self-serving ones. Whoever comes to power, they must function responsibly for the people.�
Actress Zerifa Wahid said, �I am optimistic about the poll outcome. I just hope the new government creates an environment of resurgence and development. I hope the problems that have tormented the State for the last many years will be solved this time.�
�Irrespective of the party that comes to power, one just hopes that the social fabric of the State will be maintained at all costs,� she said.
�Trying to win votes through marketing or false propaganda is not going to work for any party. Voters have become conscious and know what to expect from the government. The problems peculiar to the State must be addressed with utmost zeal,� she stressed.