CM agrees with Church, but refuses to postpone panchayat polls

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 01 May 2012 07:30 IST

Chief minister Manohar Parrikar admits all the irregularities taken place in the process of panchayat elections but refuses to accept the demand of postponement due to ‘constitutional constraints.’

While addressing the media yesterday, Parrikar said he is completely in agreement with all the observations raised by Church-back Council for Social Justice and Peace regarding the irregularities in delimitation of wards and reservation of wards.

“However, don’t agree with the demand of postponing the elections since it is not possible legally”, he claimed.

According to him neither he had a mandate to postpone the elections nor had the constitutional experts advised him in favour of postponement.

The process of delimitation and reservation takes minimum six to eight months and there is no provision to appoint administrator on panchayats while the new panchayat councils have to be constituted by 19 May, he points out.

Parrikar has also assured to amend the Goa Panchayat Raj Act in the winter session, giving powers of delimitation and reservation to the State Election Commission.

While several organisation and individuals have complained to the authorities and have even approached the court, the Church-backed CSJP has demanded that the election be postponed by six months.

The Church has even warned to boycott the polls if elections are held on 16 May, as scheduled.

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