With three weeks left for voting in the local level election, party campaigners have intensified election preparations here. The leaders and cadres have been reaching every doorstep and wooing voters.

The villagers here are however busy harvesting wheat, sowing corn and planting vegetables. Paucity of irrigation is a worrying concern for them.

They have no time to engage in political campaigns and participate in political debates. Rather, they are dogged with the problems of irrigation, chemical fertilisers, seeds, clean drinking water etc.

"Political leaders visit us during election and assure many things, but do not deliver as promised and our problems persist," Dil Bahadur Sapkota from Torakhet of Beni Municipality said.

Sapkota who was threshing wheat expressed worry why agriculture sector was not developed though roadway and communication saw relative progress.

"Now, there is three-tiers of government. Why has the local government failed to become the government of farmers? We're desperately waiting for facilities of irrigation, fertilisers, improved seeds and compensation for loss of crops caused by hailstone and floods. So, the election does not attract us," he explained.

There is one municipality and five rural municipalities in Myagdi district while the number of wards stands at 45.

Except wards 7 and 8 of Beni Municipality, other local levels are rural ones. Ninety per cent of the voters here are farmers from rural areas and associated with agriculture.

Farmers' apathy to political campaigning is not only their busy schedule because of the harvest season, but also due to the leaders' indifference to the implementation of promises they made regarding farmer's rights, according to Chitra Bahadur Purja from Raghuganga Rural Municipality.

"We're busy with agricultural work, which is more important than election," he added.

Moreover, another farmer from Bagarphant, Tika Bahadur Karki, said, "If I get break from work, I may go to vote.

But I've no time to listen to leaders' speeches anymore."

A version of this article appears in the print on April 19, 2022, of The Himalayan Times