News Karnataka
Saturday, October 01 2022
Manjunath Bhandary

Gram Swaraj Draft Notification: MLC Bhandary writes to CM 

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Mangaluru: MLC Manjunath Bhandary has written a letter to Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai stating withdrawing the intention of bringing about changes to the rules in Draft Notification dated on July 27 regarding Karnataka Grama Swaraj and Panchayat Raj (Process of removing Gram panchayat President, Vice-President and Members).
Bhandary said, “The notification of the above reference contains suggestions on removal of President, Vice-Presidents and Members of Panchayats. If the suggestions are converted into Act and implemented, the Act is binding on elected representatives of Gram Panchayats as there is a risk of curtailing the right. Therefore the government has been asked to withdraw the notification.
In this case, I am bringing about the following points to your notice in the draft notification that as per 12 L, 43A, 48(4), 48(5) the intention of amending the points has been stated. Gram Panchayat Presidents, Vice-presidents and Members filing a complaint in connection with the process of removal and the power to investigate and report from the level of the State Government to the level of executive officer of taluk panchayat is not right. It has to be done at State level as earlier. The Government should take steps to frame the necessary rules to make this process more unbiased.
In sections 43A, 48(4) and 48(5) of the Act, and is guilty of misconduct and demeanor; the words are used. But nowhere is it explained as to what is the misbehaviour . Taking advantage of this lacuna of the Act and succumbing to political pressure, the Taluk Panchayat junior officers and the elected representatives of the gram panchayat are expressing concern that there is a possibility of the executive officer misusing the situation. Such rules are not being followed to remove the elected representatives of the above levels from their membership and post. It is the responsibility of the government to treat the gram panchayat members, who are accountable to the voters and the public through the present housing meeting, ward sabha, gram sabha as well as the gram panchayat jamabandi, with the same respect as the elected representatives of the above levels.
Therefore, I request you to order the withdrawal of the Draft Notification of the above reference. As per Section 310-A of the Karnataka Gram Swaraj and Panchayat Raj Act, a high-level committee named State Panchayat Parishad has been constituted under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister. This committee will be a representative body of panchayati raj institutions of all the three tiers. The purpose of the formulation of this system is that any changes or amendments to the Act shall take the form of an Act only after discussion and acceptance before this Committee.

Bhandary also said, ” I hope that at least during your tenure the State Panchayat Parishad will act in accordance with the purpose of the act. As a responsible Legislator representing the local bodies in the council, my concern is expressed through letter. I believe that by responding positively, you will preserve the aspirations of decentralisation of power.”

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