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Panchayat law stresses education imperative

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  15 March 2018 12:00 AM GMT

People with basic educatiol qualifications can alone contest panchyat elections after the passage of the new panchyat bill; two-child norm has also been defined

BY OUR STAFF REPORTER

GUWAHATI, March 14: The Assam Assembly on Wednesday passed the Assam Panchayat (Amendment) Bill 2018, seeking radical changes in the terms and conditions for candidates willing to contest panchayat polls, while the Congress, opposing the bill, staged a walkout. The bill sought amendment to the Assam Panchayat Act 1994.

The new provisions state that any person wishing to contest panchayat polls must fulfill two basic conditions of at least having a sanitary latrine at home and ought not to have more than two children too. This apart, educatiol criteria have been precisely defined.

The new provision enumerates that for membership of zila parishad, a candidate must at least pass 12th standard (general) and 10th standard (ST/SC/OBC/MOBC). On the other hand, the aspirants for gaon panchayat president’s post and for membership for anchalik panchayat will be required to pass 10th standard (general) and eighth standard (ST/SC/OBC/MOBC). The minimum qualification for aspirants to the membership of gaon panchayat is above sixth standard (general), whereas there is no such stipulation for aspirants in the ST, SC, OBC and MOBC categories.

The amendment bill has further set the quorum with respect to a gram sabha session. It has been fixed at minimum 500 members or one-tenth of the total members of the sabha.

Before the bill was passed, State Fince Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said, “As of now, even if one has more than two children, he can contest panchayat polls. But after the notification of the new Act, if anyone makes an addition to his already existing two children, he will be barred from contesting. But there will be no relaxation in the terms and conditions pertaining to educatiol qualifications.”

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