THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: 21-year-old Arya Rajendran hailing from Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram will become the country’s youngest mayor on Monday. A second-year BSc Mathematics student of the All Saints’ College, she was elected from the Thiruvananthapuram municipal corporation on a CPM ticket. On Friday, when news broke on the CPM’s Mayordesignate, young Arya’s modest house at Mudavanmugal was flocked by media persons and party workers.
With maturity and composure that belied her age, Arya spoke about her dreams for the city becoming free of waste menace and a safe place for women. Arya is the daughter of K Rajendran, an electrician and branch committee member of the CPM, and Sreelatha, an LIC agent. She has an elder brother. Quite active in local politics, Arya is a state committee member of the Student Federation of India.
She is also the state president of the Balasangham. Arya says her immediate priorities are to work for the welfare of the people and also to continue her studies.
“During my campaigning, many people, especially women, had asked me to pay equal attention to my studies. I will keep my word,” she said with aplomb. She has missed three of her X’mas examinations and is now preparing to sit for the rest. Among her plans for the corporation is effecting a behaviour change among residents so that they become more concerned about the city’s cleanliness.
“Some people still dump waste on the road. They need to be educated,” she said. Her other priorities include tackling children’s emotional stress due to remote schooling.
“I was born in a Leftist family and had a natural flair for politics,” she said, adding that her father was her first guru in politics. An ardent fan of Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Arya says his role as a crisis manager attracted her the most.
Source: The New Indian Express