Punjab Cong calls on guv over 'wrongful' demarcation of panchayat wards
The Congress on Wednesday submitted a memorandum to Punjab governor Shivraj Patil, seeking his intervention in the ongoing demarcation of wards of panchayats in the state, dubbing the move "wrongful, farcical and politicised".chandigarh Updated: Jan 16, 2013 19:24 IST
The Congress on Wednesday submitted a memorandum to Punjab governor Shivraj Patil, seeking his intervention in the ongoing demarcation of wards of panchayats in the state, dubbing the move "wrongful, farcical and politicised".
The party's panel formed to look into alleged irregularities in the run-up to the May 2013 panchayat elections also urged the governor to look into the carving out of new panchayats from existing ones on the basis of amendments that the Akali-BJP government made in the Punjab Panchayati Raj Act, 1994.
"The state government had amended the 1994 Act (Amended Act 4 of 2012), by which it intends to create new gram panchayats as well form wards within all panchayats solely for their hidden political motive to capture gram panchayats by thwarting the democratic electoral process," the memorandum said.
"The proposed wards within the gram panchayats have been demarcated by completely flouting the natural principle of contiguity, merely to benefit likely aspirants of the ruling SAD-BJP combine," it said.
The delegation that met the governor was led by Jeetmohinder Singh Sidhu, chairman of the party's panel formed to monitor delimitising panchayats and wards for the panchayat elections.
SAD denies foul play
Refuting the Congress allegations, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) said the opposition party was indulging in negative propaganda on the creation of new gram panchayats and formation of wards in villages.
The exercise is being done to smoothly conduct the panchayat elections, SAD spokesman Dr Daljit Singh Cheema said in a statement here.
"The Punjab Congress has started complaining about the delimitation of village wards, knowing well that the sarpanch's election would be held directly, with all voters taking part in the process, and so the creation of wards would have no bearing on the outcome of the polls," Dr Cheema said.