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Haryana government passed Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Bill, 2015

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Haryana State Assembly passed the Haryana Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Bill, 2015 which seeks to amend the Haryana Panchayati Raj Act, 1994 and fixes minimum educational qualification relating to eligibility criteria for elections to Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs).

The bill was presented by Haryana Agriculture Minister OP Dhankar and by virtue of this Haryana became the second state after Rajasthan to fix educational and other qualifications as eligibility criteria for the candidates contesting Panchayat elections.

Highlights of the Bill:

  • Now it is mandatory for the candidates to have a functional toilet at home and payment slips of power bills.
  • For general candidates contesting the Panchayat elections matriculation is the essential qualification.
  • For the women (general) and Scheduled caste candidates, essential qualification is middle standard or class 8th passed.
  • The educational qualification for women SC candidates should be class V passed.
  • Persons against whom charges have been framed by the competent court for criminal offences punishable by not less than 10 years of imprisonment will not be allowed to contest the elections till they are acquitted by the court.
  • Cooperative loan defaulters will also be debarred from contesting the elections to Panchayati Raj Institutions.

Significance:

This is to improve the quality of leadership and governance in gram panchayats and also to enable elected representatives of PRIs to be more accountable and responsible towards their people.

Key Points to Remember:

  • Haryana Capital – Chandigarh
  • Chief Minister of Haryana – Manohar Lal Khattar