Neten Dorji

The public of Bumdeling-Jamkhar constituency are preparing to make the difficult choice on the poll day for the 2023-2024 General Election. 

This, according to the voters, was because both the candidates, each fielded by People’s Democratic Party and Bhutan Tendrel party, were capable and experienced. 

As a result, the candidates were also asking the public of Bumdeling-Jamkhar constituency to choose the ‘best’ among the two candidates, and the one who would address the issues they were grappling with. 

However, as in other constituencies, the issues were similar and so were the pledges brought to the people. 

The candidate from People Democratic Party, Thinley Wangchuk, pledged to improve the road between Jamkhar and Tongmijangsa gewog, continue the Khologchu hydro project, develop tourism, build more roads, and re-introduce central schools.

“If PDP wins, we will establish Bumdeling LSS as a central school and restore the Dalikhar school as a chiwog school. People know how much central school has benefited rural people,” said Thinley Wangchuk.

He also pledged to support land management, and provide low interest loans to buy farm machinery, adding the PDP was ready with a Nu.15 billion economic stimulus plan to be implemented within a year to recover the economy of the country. 

Bhutan Tendrel Party’s candidate, Wangdi, also pledged to widen the gewog central roads, and blacktop all roads connecting gewogs and chiwogs, including a new road from Yangtse to Minjey gewog in Lhuentse.

 However, BTP would provide autonomous schools instead of central schools. Students in a central school would be provided all essential items for free, while the school administration would be provided the budget with the power to spend as it deems fit. 

“We will provide a monthly child allowance of Nu 15,000 until the child is 18-years of age to ensure children from poor families have equal opportunity to perform well academically,” he said. 

To manage human-wildlife conflict, Wangdi also pledged chain-linked fencing to keep wildlife away from the farms. Wangdi added that BTP pledged to provide a monthly payment of Nu 3,000 monthly to senior citizens above 65 years of age and to persons with disabilities. He also pledged to increase rural life insurances from Nu 30,000 to Nu 150,000 at premium of Nu 87 annually. 

“If you support us, we will ensure the graduates a year-long internship to gain experience while joining work,” said Wangdi. 

A total of 67 voters including 28 female voters attended the common forum held at Jamkhar gewog. One could not, however, help notice some lighter moments punctuating the meeting.  

This time it was two elderly voters who walked in mid-meeting, and as one of them was clearly under the influence of alcohol he was promptly sent off.