Special Correspondent

Bangalore: The General Secretary of the All India Panchayat Parishat (AIPP) B.R. Patil and C. Narayanaswamy, former MP, have urged the Union Government to bring in a comprehensive amendment to the Constitution for ensuring effective functioning of the Panchayat Raj institutions.

They were addressing a meeting convened by the Karnataka Panchayat Parishat here on Tuesday. The meeting was convened on the eve of the celebration of the golden jubilee year of the AIPP from October 18 in Delhi.

Mr. Narayanaswamy said that though the amendments to Articles 73 and 74, brought out by the Rajiv Gandhi Government, had facilitated the participation of all those concerned, particularly Schedule Castes and Schedule Tribes and women, legal complexities at the State-level had been hampering effective functioning of the three-tier system. Besides bringing in amendments to the relevant laws at the State-level, a comprehensive amendment to the Constitution was desired for the cause of overall rural development, he added.

Problems

Mr. Patil said that though three persons represent the local bodies in the State Legislative Council, there was hardly any discussion on the problems faced by the panchayats. On the contrary, there were regular complaints by the MLAs that they were being ignored by the zilla and taluk panchayats.

Legal complexities and under staffing had accentuated the problems of the local body system, he said.

Besides, the delimitation had resulted in accommodating increased representation to urban areas in the Legislative Assembly at the cost of the overall development of rural areas.

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