A newly -announced Labour candidate at the General Election has said that that he is “appalled by the lack of honesty, integrity and decency at the heart of government”.

Swindon councillor Ravi Venkatesh moved to the UK in 2006 from southern India and recounted arriving with just £20 in his pocket.

He created an IT consulting business and built a family in the town, where he got involved in politics. He was elected as the ward councillor for Penhill & Upper Statton in 2023.

Now Mr Venkatesh is getting involved in national politics and hoping residents will vote for him to represent the new constituency of Chippenham at the general election - the new constituency butts right up to west Swindon.

He said: “It’s chaos, things are not going right.

(Image: Ravi Venkatesh)

“You take schools, you take hospitals, you take public transport, you take anything – the economy, inflation, cost of living… People are crying out.”

He described himself as “passionate” about education, listing respect and correct remuneration as essential for teachers.

He explained: “I want children growing up here today to feel the same way – to be confident that their prospects in life will be determined by their talent and what they are prepared to give, not by their postcode, the colour of their skin or the size of their parents’ bank balance.”

Regarding housing, he added: “Every development should be properly scrutinised to see whether all the infrastructure is in place.”

Mr Venkatesh said the Labour Party is “fully committed” to bringing about change and requested residents give them the opportunity to do so.

He said: “Lib Dems are not ready for forming a government, Conservatives are not popular to form a government, who else is left?

“Labour is the only party able to form the government and having an MP in the ruling party is very important.”

Mr Venkatesh stated: “I want our constituency to have excellent schools that nurture young people’s interest in the world around them; good, well-paid jobs available locally; the chance to get on, not have to dream of moving out.

“I want older people to have dignity and security in later life – not waiting hours for an ambulance, weeks for a GP or years for an operation.

“I want everyone to have a decent home and be able to enjoy life’s little luxuries – not fearing the next gas bill or the next trip to the petrol station.”

He concluded: “Just put a cross in front of my name, and Ravi will be there for you.”

Also standing in Chippenham on July 4 are  Declan Basely (Green Party), Ed Deedigan (Independent), Sarah Gibson (Liberal Democrat), Benjamin Ginsburg (Reform UK) and Nic Puntis (Conservative).