LOCAL paediatrician Atul Misra knows the medical industry inside out and now he will step into unfamiliar territory; the world of politics.
Dr Misra told The Area News he will stand as an independent candidate for the seat of Murray in the upcoming state election.
“People tell me we need doctors representing us, not politicians,” he said.
Inspired by the swing in the QLD state election, Dr Misra is hoping for a similar dynamic in NSW.
“You never know what will happen here, Campbell Newman lost his seat.”
He would like to see the area capitalise on its multiculturalism.
“We have a great immigrant population, we can use attractions such as the Sikh temple to draw many more tourists to the region,” he said.
“Hundreds of people come to the temple for the long weekend in June; it puts Griffith on the map.”
Dr Misra believes that education is the key that unlocks social cohesion, something that he is very passionate about.
“If you travel anywhere in the world you learn that we have to live cohesively,” he said.
Dr Misra has experienced an abundance of culture, living overseas for most of his life in India, the United Arab Emirates, and North Africa, finally settling in Australia 12 years ago.
A more active tourism industry fits in with Dr Misra’s economic vision.
“I would like to bring more jobs to the region,” he said.
“Economically we can do better.”
Compelled by a sense of responsibility, he believes that the best way to make a change is to get involved.
“You can’t just use politicians as a punching bag, if you want to make a difference you are responsible.”
Dr Misra is using local knowledge as stimulus for his campaign, and says that water allocations are on the forefront of his mind.
“If you call me, and you want my opinion, I will tell you, but my opinion doesn’t matter much,” he said.
“I am listening to local people, because it’s what they want that matters.”
He enters the race knowing that it may not be the most popular pursuit.
“I am calling this a community service rather than politics; people have started hating politics.”
He has worked at Griffith Base Hospital for two years and is in the process of establishing a private practice in Griffith.