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BJP Objects To KCR's Changes To Panchayat Raj Act

The party claimed that all the proposed amendments were in clear violation of the letter & spirit of the Indian Constitution.
Hyderabad | 8th January 2018
Telangana BJP official spokesperson Krishna Saagar Rao said that the party objected strongly to the proposals made by Telangana CM K Chandrashekar Rao to amend the Panchayat Raj Act of 1992.

He said that going by what was being circulated by the TRS government through media leaks, all the proposed amendments were in clear violation of the letter & spirit of the Indian Constitution.

Rao said that both the Panchayat Raj Act of 1992 and the Municipalities Act of 1992 were national laws passed subsequent to the 73rd & 74th constitutional amendments. While the state government had the power to make amendments to the same locally due to panchayats and municipalities being state subjects, the amendments could not be ultra-vires or deviate from the framework of the national law.

He further said that in the three-tier local body system proposed for self-governance, the existing Panchayat Raj law clearly stated through articles 243(a) to 243(o) the funding, functions and functionaries of the local bodies, and the electoral process for the filling up of posts that the state election commission would have to undertake every five years.

However, the CM's plan to amend the Act by making village sarpanch elections indirect would be to grossly deviate from the existing mandate of direct elections to the post.

Other proposals by the CM including adding a provision for the removal of a sarpanch based on his performance and reducing the powers vested in the post of sarpanch were also politically motivated amendments, and they would all be stalled by the courts for overriding the existing national laws, he said.

Rao alleged that through these proposed amendments the TRS supremo was waging an unethical war against the thousands of sarpanchs in Telangana in order to take control of them politically as he was desirous of boosting his party's electoral outcomes in the general and Assembly elections due in 2019.

He said that the BJP would fight to protect the sanctity of the local bodies' independence and their roles and responsibilities as provided under the constitutional amendments 73 and 74. It would also explore all legal options to stall the unconstitutional amendments that the CM was proposing to make in the Panchayat Raj Act, he said.
filed in:  Telangana, BJP, Krishna Saagar Rao, KCR, Panchayat Raj, Gram Panchayat, Amendment
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