New Act against spirit of Constitution: Opposition

New Act against spirit of Constitution: Opposition

Is the new Municipal Bill passed by Telangana government against the spirit of Indian Constitution?

Hyderabad: Is the new Municipal Bill passed by Telangana government against the spirit of Indian Constitution? The Opposition parties and civil society organisations claim that it goes against the objective of 73rd and 74th amendments which gave independence to panchayats and municipalities and the concept of self-governance.

They claim that delegation of more powers to Collectors, making the elected bodies a mere spectators in the administration of the municipalities and more involvement of state government in running the Urban Local Bodies ( ULBs) will impede the performance of the municipalities and people will be the ultimate victims, they said.

CLP leader Bhatti Vikaramarka, while speaking in the Assembly, said the new Act provides a big scope for discrimination against the elected members from the opposition parties.

"If the regulation is brought like a mother, there will be no issues but if the regulations are taken like a step-mother, it will be against the spirit of Grama Swarajya," Vikramarka said.

The new Act was taking the ULBs in centralised form instead of decentralised administration, he said.

Lok Satta leader and former IAS officer Jayaprakash Narayan said that delegation of more powers to Collectors in the administration of municipalities is undemocratic.

State governments already failed to adhere to the principles set in the constitution to run local bodies by depriving them of required funds to take up development activities.

He wanted appointment of Ombudsman to oversee performance of the municipalities in place of the domination of external forces.

The highhandedness of the state in the administration of ULBs is against the constitutional obligations, Lok Satta leader said.

Forum For Good Governance leader M Padmanabha Reddy said that the Act has been brought horridly without consulting the organisations concerned and seek the public opinion.

According lot of powers to Collectors is not good. "As per 74th amendment, Collectors cannot take action against municipal chairpersons and vice-chairpersons," he said.

He said the government has no right to take unilateral decision in the demolition of the buildings. No law is allowed to take such action without hearing the grievances of the people.

The Act should have been enacted after seeking views of different sections of people and stakeholders.

Reddy also took strong exception to the creation of seven more municipal corporations in addition to the six in the new Act.

Even the highly populated states do not have such big number of corporations, he averred.

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