Mysuru: Gautamamma (102), who hit the headlines last week by winning a panchayat election at a ripe age, has realized the stark reality of local politics.
Panchayat elections are fought without any party affiliations but it is an open secret that political undercurrents are strong in controlling the conduct of elections and post-poll equations.
Gautamamma’s victory from Doddalattur panchayat in Ramapur hobali in Chamarajanagar district apart, she is aware that just a win is not good enough to realize her dreams of developing her village. She needed the political back-up as well. Aligning with some major party or other was a must for going ahead.
After consulting her supporters and other villagers, she has joined the Congress party. She was welcomed into the party fold by state minister H S Mahadeva Prasad at a function held on Mahadeshwar hill on Sunday.
She repeated her resolve to have the village developed. Having joined Congress now, she is said to be a strong contender for the post of the panchayat president. Her affiliation to the party will not invite any problem under the anti-defection laws since parties do not come into the picture in these local elections.
Her supporters have welcomed the idea saying that had she continued to be an independent, she would have remained a voiceless non-entity. But now on she will have better leverage by becoming the president.