, (ANI): Village Khera Rathore, which comes under Fatehpur Sikri Lok Sabha constituency, was once the epicentre of dacoity.
The identity of the village was synonymous with notorious bandit Maan Singh, who used to interfere in every election process in the region. The village also sports a temple built in the name of Maan Singh.
Diktats issued by rebels in favour of one candidate or the other used to be the order of the day. "Terror of the rebels pervaded in all villages of the Chambal region. Every election in 1990s would be influenced by their diktats. But things changed in the early 2000s when the government undertook massive police operations against dacoits. Many of them surrendered and some got killed," said a resident of Gohra village, Toofan Singh.
The Chambal region lies at the western border of Rajasthan and southern border of Madhya Pradesh. Five rivers pass through the region namely- the Chambal, the Yamuna, the Kwari, the Sindh, and the Pahuj.
The village has come a long way as people now vote for their chosen representatives without any fear or pressure.
"2007 was the first assembly election in which no diktats were issued. Everybody is now free to vote without any fear or pressure. But leaders should also take this region forward," said resident Ram Kailash.
"Common people were not much aware of politics hence were told which party or candidate to vote for. Baba Maan Singh was respected by all in the region," said great-grandson of Maan Singh, Dheer Singh in conversation with ANI.
"Five of my family members chose rebellion. Baba believed in democracy but adverse circumstances left him with no choice," Dheer Singh added.
Elections in the country are scheduled to be conducted in seven phases starting from April 12 and ending on May 18. Counting of votes will take place on May 23. (ANI)