Hyderabad: The Telangana High Court on Monday reserved judgment on petitions challenging the merger of gram panchayats with nearby municipalities, corporations and nagar panchayats after the completion of day-long submission of arguments by the government and locals.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice Thottathil B. Radha-krishnan and Justice A. Rajasekher Reddy was hearing 128 petitions challenging the merger of about 250 villages in the erstwhile districts of Karimnagar, Ranga Reddy, Mahbubnagar, Nalgonda, Medak, Khammam and Nizama-bad with nearby urban bodies, alleging that the due process of law was not followed.
The petitioners contended that their voice was not heard before the authorities concerned decided to merge the villages with urban local bodies.
Counsels for the petitioners submitted that the state government had ignored the basic principle for delimitation that as per the Panchayat Raj Act, the respective village has to be denotified from the village list.
They contended that the people of the villages proposed for merger would lose their livelihood because of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme would not be applicable in urban areas. The government had failed to state in what way the people of the villages would benefit.
The petitioners challenged various sections of the amended Acts governing municipalities and municipal corporations....