New York: Swaraj Yatra, a 240-mile Gandhian walk on foot, initiated by NRIs two weeks ago from Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC reached the financial capital of the world — New York City — on August 14. What started off as a silent walk by three people on the first day, seems to have invoked quite an interest by the Indian community, who noticed the team wearing their Gandhian caps and were eager to speak with them.
During their walk, the Swaraj Yatris met some local county officials, including Mayor Antonia Ricigliano, of Edison, NJ, to understand the decentralization of power in the local counties and how this can be applied in India. Edison currently has the highest number of Indians within the US.
“We were quite surprised,” says Madhusudan, one of the yatris, “what most of us think as an idealistic and impractical concept – is actually in practice in the United States. Local county offices have referendum and initiative – so by means of voting it is decided where the budgets need to be allocated, whether local infrastructure needs more attention than local schools.” The issues of National Security and International Affairs are still discussed and implemented at the Federal government level.
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