The majority of people at my age are interested in the decision-making processes that affect our daily lives, even if some of us are too disconnected or disappointed by the present problems to realise it. We all have concerns about our future – ranging from discrimination to the lack of access to education, health services, jobs and affordable homes. While in a country like India where one needs to be blessed by god father to get into mainstream politics countries like US, UK and Australia provides equal opportunity for youngsters to get into mainstream politics. Our beloved PM Narendra Modiji firmly believe Indian community living in US and Australia are the biggest asset for India since they represent the nation and they play a key role in binding nations relationship with foreign countries. Today I would like to write about a young Indian women who recently won the city councilor election at Liverpool, Australia from the Labor Party. Her story is an inspiration for all those young Indians who want to get into mainstream politics to lead the country. Charishma Kaliyanda is basically from Kodagu a tiny district in South Karnataka. Her father worked for Mico (now Bosch) and her mother worked with the Central Government and they eventually moved to Australia. Charishma completed her schooling and her graduation at Sydney. A Therapist by profession Charishma is currently work for a professional association. It was not a easy start for the family when they initially moved to Sydney. The family has now settled in Australia for about 24 years however the Indian culture is still deep routed and respected.
Speaking to Readoo India, Charishma explained her political journey she stated “I got involved first in the student representative council at university, and then in organised politics. My university was significantly changing courses and timetables and after complaining in a class, a fellow student asked if I wanted to do something constructive or continue complaining. That really stuck with me and it is what motivated me to continue my involvement in politics.” She went on to say “I never really had an idea of running for elections when I got involved. I was encouraged to do so by members of my party (the Labor Party), people in the community and others I respect. Australia is a diverse and multicultural country. Liverpool, the area that I have been elected to represent has many people who have migrated here, just like my family. In that way, lots of people I speak to have not only been accepting, but very encouraging!”
When asked about Racial attacks in Australia Charishma said
Liverpool, the area I represent, is one of Australia’s most linguistically and culturally diverse regions. We have people from over 150 different birthplaces around the world, and almost 50% of our residents speak a language other than English at home. It is my home and an area I am very proud to represent. As a city, Liverpool takes inclusion of all residents very seriously, especially those who may feel isolated and we have a strategy to ensure that as a community we engage and encourage all to participate.
Safety and security are ongoing considerations in every country and where there are issues of racism we must take steps to address it and prevent it from occurring.
We further went on to ask what change would Charishma want to bring into the society what new things she has in store to offer to the people and she responded saying
“I was elected as part of a Labor Party team. Like my colleagues, I believe that the growth of Liverpool lies in the ability of our Councillors to be transparent, accountable and approachable. I think it is important to balance development with quality of life and community services in the area. As one of the fastest growing regions in the state in terms of population, we have to give consideration to planning and infrastructure in particular.
I look forward to working with our community to make Liverpool the best place to live.”
When questioned if she has any aspiration of national level politics Charishma said “At this point I am looking forward to learning the ropes of Council, adjusting to being a first term Councillor and working for the improvement and progress of my local area.” She definitely sounded like a politician who not only known what she is talking but has a sound vision of how she should execute her plans to build a better society. Story of this young Indian who is making a difference in Australia not only motivates youngsters but also tells how Indian community is globally accepted and admired for their contribution. We wish Charishma Kaliyanda all the best for her future endeavors and hope she will continue to inspire millions of youngsters around the globe to take up politics and build a better society.