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- Jayant uses social media to address core issues like roads, water & power

Hazaribagh’s new BJP MP Jayant Sinha wants to be a hands-on legislator with a tech twist.

Using social media as the new tool for governance and accountability, the IITian turned Harvard management graduate is posting updates on three basics — water (paani), power (bijli) and roads (sadak) — on Facebook.

Jayant, voted to power on a landslide victory, also wants the BJP party office in Hazaribagh and Ramgarh to get video conferencing gadgets so that people share their problems with him easily.

One of the most educated legislators in PM-elect Narendra Modi’s party, former Union minister and BJP veteran Yashwant Sinha’s son Jayant managed to shed his urban-urbane-elite tag in a matter of months.

He also stressed that no matter where he is, he would always be connected to his constituency. No way was he going to be an “absentee landlord”.

His daily status messages on FB prove his point.

A typical post starts with a no-fuss salutation “Friends”. Then, it goes on to the nitty-gritty.

“Longer term, we will have to get Konar dam water”, says one. Another, a longer one, gets to the jugular: “Roads are a real problem in HZB because there are 4-5 different departments responsible…city roads, PWD roads, rural roads, mine roads, and so on. Executive engineer Om Prakash Yadav, is only responsible for PWD roads. The worst of these roads just now is the Barkagaon – Keredari road. Yadav has promised me yesterday that this road will be fixed in the next month.”

On electricity, he posted that department officials had told him that in another two to three months, transmission faults would be fixed.

Jayant writes facts in simple language that people can relate to. Talking to The Telegraph over phone from Delhi on Wednesday, Jayant said: “I have over 10,000 people following him on Facebook and Twitter, which means I am connected to a good number of people of Hazaribagh. So I find social media the best way to stay connected and share my thoughts immediately.”

He added that the hidden number of powers made the reach of social media wider than before.

“If 10,000 people read something, the message goes to more than 50,000,” he said. “At present, Facebook is the best and strongest medium to remain in touch with people. As a sewak of the people, I feel I should stay in touch with the people who have reposed their faith in me.”

The plans for hi-tech and video-conference-equipped party offices in Hazaribagh and Ramgarh are also a part of Jayant wanting to stay accessible.

Technology isn’t a scary or alienating factor anymore, feels Jayant. “It’s low in cost and high in reach and impact. Video conferencing will help me meet people from across my constituency,” he said.

Hazaribagh residents seem happy. Businessman Ravi Ranjan said he was happy to see Jayant use tech platforms to address basic concerns of water, power and roads.

“He replies to our queries, which is nice. We didn’t expect this from him earlier,” he said.


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