Punjab to treat village heads as ‘local ministers’

July 11th, 2008 - 7:27 pm ICT by IANS  

Ludhiana, July 11 (IANS) The Punjab government Friday asked all district authorities in the state to give more respect to elected panches and sarpanches (village heads) to make them more active and effective partners in development at all levels. Addressing a function at which the newly elected Ludhiana district panches were administered oath of office, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal directed deputy commissioners to ensure strict compliance of orders to give due respect to the elected panches and sarpanches.

About 6,000 panches from 892 panchayats of the district were administered oaths.

“We will treat you as our local ministers and will be given due respect. If any official is found guilty of misconduct with you, disciplinary proceedings will be issued against such people,” Badal said.

He said it was important to strengthen grassroots democracy through panchayati raj institutions (PRIs). He asked elected panches to rise above party affiliations to work for development of their areas.

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