Replacement to GP chief opposed

Through the recent notification that proposes an amendment to the Karnataka Budget and Expenditure Rules, the State aims to replace the “Grama Panchayat President and Secretary” with an “Officer or Authority recommended by the Government.”

The Andolana has stated that it is an attempt to suspend constitutional powers of the Grama Panchayats and is in total violation of the Constitutional aspiration clearly articulated in its 73rd amendment to strengthen democratic decentralisation.

“This draconian amendment will provide the State Government control over all Grama Panchayats Funds like the sanctioning of payments of bills or vouchers, drawing and renewal of cheques, payment of work bills, completion of work reports, record of investments, creation and management of the Sinking Fund, Payment advances and its recovery, grant records, deposits, refund of deposits and lapsed deposits.” a release by the Andolana states.

It has further criticised the 15-day time limit prescribed to provide feedback to this proposal.  That Andolana has resolved to resist the proposed modification through a state wide protest that will include Panchayat level and Taluk Level mobilisations, submissions of petitions to the State government.

Representatives of districts such as Davanagere, Kodagu, Shimoga, Udupi, Bagalkot, Bellary, Tumkur, Uttar Kannada and Chamarajanagar present in Bangalore will initiate this process that will include the Andolana members in 21 districts of Karnataka.

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