Current Affairs

Goa Govt to initiate inquiry into ‘Panchayat’ delimitations

Goa Government will initiate an inquiry into the ‘goof-ups’ by officers in delimiting wards once the Panchayat elections slated next month are over. Virtually admitting mistakes committed by officials in redefining the limits of wards, Panchayat Director Menino D’Souza today said, “many secretaries and some vested interests have played mischief while suggesting delimitation of wards”.

After the Panchayat elections, we will inquire as to why they erred. There may be a possibility that they have not done it purposely, he said. D’Souza had to issue corrigenda regarding the delimitation process after complaints regarding errors started pouring in. According to some of the complainants, no geographical continuity has been maintained in the entire process.

D’Souza further said that the directorate will continue rectifying the mistakes as and when people approach the department. Council for Social Peace and Justice and Peace’s (CSJP) executive director Fr Maverick Fernandes, who along with other like-minded people met the director today morning, said that the entire process of delimitation should have been kept open for public suggestions and objections. “CSJP, which is a wing of Goa Church, had demanded through its letter in October 2011 that the entire process be transparent,” Fernandes said, adding that the state election commission should have been made responsible to conduct the Panchayat election.

D’Souza told the CSJP that the objections and suggestions could not be invited since the block development officers were busy with the recently held assembly elections. Fernandes said that there are allegations that the delimitation process smacks of political interference. Polls for 180-odd Panchayats will be held on May 16 in which the fate of around 1500 candidates will be decided.

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