New Delhi: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu has suggested that elections to local bodies every five years should be made mandatory and there should be no discretion or scope for states to postpone or advance them.
Naidu made the suggestion here on Tuesday while interacting with a delegation of sarpanches (village heads) and panches (panchayat members) from Jammu and Kashmir.
According to an official release, he said that talks with Pakistan would be held only on Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) and asserted that the safety, security, and integrity of the nation were paramount for every Indian.
Noting that greater devolution of funds, functions, and functionaries would enable the three-tier administrative system to function more effectively, he said Jammu and Kashmir was losing around Rs 4000 crore for not conducting panchayat elections as per the norms set by the 14th Finance Commission.
"Now that elections have been conducted, the funds recommended by the Finance Commission will start flowing. I am happy to know that Rs 500 crore has already been released and another Rs 3,000 crore will be released shortly. This will be a big game-changer for the panchayat system," he added.
Naidu suggested that holding elections to local bodies every five years should be made mandatory. "There should be no discretion or scope for the States to either postpone or advance them," he said.
Noting that effective local governance was the key for better implementation of development and welfare initiatives and for better service delivery, he said that the funds allocated to the local bodies should go into the accounts of panchayats, municipalities, and corporations and spent in accordance with the resolutions of the respective bodies.