Process for panchayat elections begins

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After the hectic assembly elections, the process for the panchayat elections has begun in the state.

PANAJI: After the hectic assembly elections, the process for the panchayat elections has begun in the state.

Elections to 1,483 wards of 185 (out of a total of 189) village panchayats in the state is likely to be held on either May 13 or 16, officials said, adding that the process of appointing returning officers and adopting  voting lists  has started. The notification for the same may be issued after April 13.
But elections for Taleigao, Alorna, Chandel-Hassapur and Casarvanem village panchayats will be held later as they are not due as yet.
The term of the present panchayats ends on May 19.
On Saturday,  the Panchayat Minister, Mr Laxmikant Parsekar told the media that the elections would be held between May 13 to 19 and that the election process would  start within the next few days.
Earlier this month, the state election commission had written a letter to the directorate of panchayats, recommending that panchayat elections should be held in the last week of April or first week of May.
Last panchayat elections had seen a 12 per cent seats reserved for the ST community, 19.5 per cent for OBCs and 33 per cent for women. The directorate of panchayats has also sought advice from the law department whether to have a 50 per cent cap on reservations in each panchayat as well as whether it is mandatory to have rotation of reserved seats.
Mr Parsekar told the media that unlike the 2007 elections, there would be 33 per cent reservation for women along with ST community and OBCs, arguing that the last elections had seen some problems on the reservations front and this time efforts would be made to ensure that mistakes are not repeated.
The Panchayat Minister also said that he had asked the panchayats director to give details of secretaries working in different local bodies, including their tenure in each panchayat, so as to review their tenures and make transfers if necessary.