Source: Amar Ujala (30-Jan-2018)

Meet Jabna Chauhan, India's Youngest Sarpanch from Himachal Pradesh

It doesn’t matter how old you are, where you come from or what people think about you, your ability is going to be your identity.

Hailing from a small village named Thajun, located in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh, the now 23-year-old Jabna Chauhan has proved this by becoming the youngest Sarpanch of India. The second child of a farmer – Shri Hariya, Jabna was good in academics in her childhood. However, the limited income of her father became a barrier to Jabna’s education after she passed class 12. The father had to raise a visually impaired son and two daughters.

Eventually, her uncle offered help to continue her education and got her a part-time job in a newspaper to support her expenses. Soon Jabna began travelling to every nook and corner of Mandi to collect news. Through this experience, she joined a local news channel, ‘Oriental Times’, as a reporter and anchor. While working as a journalist, she not only tried to focus on the problems of marginalised communities in her village but also made sure that these problems reached the authorities and got solved. In 2016, when it was time for the Panchayat elections, Jabna was requested by the entire village to file her nomination. Jabna, who was just 22 at the time, was not sure about entering politics. However, she soon realised that this was the opportunity to do something for her village.

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