J Sivaprasanna Kumar Madurai, Mar 27 (PTI) It is the poll season and its raining offers of freebies in Tamil Nadu--washing machines and digital tablets from the Dravidian majors AIADMK and DMK-- but here is an independent candidate who is promising the moon, quite literally.
His poll assurances may sound bizarre and next to impossible to achieve but R Saravanan is making all eye ball grabbing promises that one would, at the most laugh off, with the intention of creating awareness against the freebie culture and the tall claims politicians make.
Saravanan, who calls himself by the moniker Thulam Saravanan, has assured to provide 100-day free trip to the moon, free iphones and even a mini helicopter, should the people elect him as MLA and asserts all his promises are a pointer against the freebie culture prevalent in Tamil Nadu.
The 33-year-old journalist's prospects from Madurai South may be low considering he has to take on the AIADMK, DMK and AMMK, all of whose candidates are leaving no stone unturned to secure a win, backed by strong party networks.
Amidst a shower of freebies by several political parties, Saravanan has promised an annual deposit of Rs one crore into the bank accounts of every family if he is elected as legislator.
His unimaginable 14 poll assurances also include free robots to home makers to help in their domestic chores, three-storied houses with swimming pool for everyone, a mini- helicopter, 100 sovereigns gold to women for their marriage, a boat for every family and Rs one crore to the youth to start their own business ventures.
Perhaps what could take the cake is his promise to set up a 300 feet high artificial snow mountain to keep the constituency cool, besides a space research station and a rocket launch pad.
His poll promises grabbed the attention of many on the social media and he has become an instant celebrity in the constituency- not because he could win and deliver the promises - but more so due to the fanciful assurances.
He has been receiving more calls by the day.
'I want to create an awareness among the people that they should not fall prey to freebies,' Saravanan, laughing, told PTI when asked if he himself believed whether his ideas were feasible should the local people elect him as their MLA.
'People should come out of the freebie culture and introspect on what the political parties have done to improve their living conditions. Various parties make tall promises during elections and seldom meet the people once they get elected,' Saravanan, who is fighting the poll on garbage bin symbol, claims.
He is from Anupanadi in Madurai and his aim is to make the people elect a genuine candidate who can serve them but not offer cash or freebies to get elected.
Archrivals AIADMK and DMK, engaged in a tough battle for power, have promised a slew of freebies including gadgets, doles and assistance to various groups of population.
While the AIADMK has promised washing machines to all households, DMK said it would give away tablets to students, and have sought to woo the womenfolk with promises of monthly assistance.
Kamal Haasan's Makkal Needhi Maiam has also promised cash assistance to the elderly and women among others.
The proponents of such largesse have described their promises as those 'free of cost' and the list eversince 2006 include free colour TV sets, gold for thali (Mangal sutra), laptops and milch cows. PTI JSP SA ROH ROH