Polls of local self-Govts should be on party lines: D'Souza

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 11 May 2013 18:51 IST

Goa government is toying with the idea of holding elections of local self-governments on party lines.

Deputy Chief minister Francis D’Souza, who is also the urban development minister, is planning to bring major amendments to the Goa Municipalities Act by next Assembly session.

Besides conducting elections of municipalities, Zilla Panchayats and village panchayats on party lines, the minister also feels that anti-defection provisions should be applied to them to bring stability.

“These are my personal opinions and the government is yet to take a formal decision in this regard”, he however clarified.

D’Souza is also not very happy with the even number of seats in many panchayats and municipalities.

“It has to be an odd number, in order to function with a majority view”, he opined.

The Goa Municipalities Act was adopted in 1968 by copying the Maharashtra Municipalities Act without taking local situation into consideration, stated the urban development minister.

 

He has thus now appointed a committee of three expert lawyers to work out several amendments to the act.

The amendments would also include issues like reservation for municipalities and corporations, he said.

D’Souza also made it clear that the City Corporation of Panaji would have an independent act.

The issue had cropped up recently as the government suddenly postponed elections of CCP Mayor and Deputy Mayor when the opposition managed to get their Mayor elected.

The government however had to backtrack and allow Surendra Furtado – candidate of the opposition Congress – to get elected as majority corporators approached the high court. 

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This is a good idea and the minister deserves appreciation for the same.

In any case, politicians have their own panels for these elections. Hence, it will be better to have these elections on party lines.

More important than fighting on party lines, it is required that ANTI-DEFECTION PROVISIONS SHOULD APPLY to panchayats, municipalities and corporation to prevent 'buying' elected representatives and grab power.

If anybody wants to change loyalty, let the person resign and contest again to get elected by the people.

- Francisco, Goa | 11 th May 2013 20:48

 

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