AFTER RULING Congress failed thrice to pass the annual budget of Gondal taluka panchayat, the Gujarat government on Monday dissolved its general board and appointed an administrator.
“We received a notification from development commissioner today ordering dissolving the Gondal taluka panchayat with immediate effect. The action has been taken after the ruling party failed thrice to pass the annual budget. It was incumbent upon the party to get the budged passed by March 31. But it couldn’t do so in two attempts. The government gave it one more opportunity. But its third attempt also remained unsuccessful, warranting the dissolution of the body,” district development officer (DDO) of Rajkot, Manoj Kothari told The Indian Express.
Kothari said that the state government can take action if the ruling party’s budget proposal fails twice to get approval of the general board of a taluka panchayat. The government also appointed Gondal sub-divisional magistrate Hanumantsinh Jadeja as the administrator till a new body is elected.
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The development marks culmination of mismanagement by Congress. The party had come to power by winning 12 out of 22 seats of the general board of the taluka panchayat while BJP had managed only 10. But, during election to the post of president and vice-president of the panchayat body, a Congress member had cross-voted. That had resulted in tie.
In the subsequent draw of lots, Congress’s Bhagvatsinh Vaghela managed to win the post of president but the vice-president post went to Siddharajsinh Jadeja of BJP.
The imbroglio continued in the months leading up to budget meetings early this year. The budget proposal moved by the chairman of the executive committee of the body failed to get majority vote at the meeting of general board of the panchayat. Then Congress proposed to hold a general board meeting at Moviya village of Gondal taluka. But Rajkot DDO intervened and prevented the meeting to take place outside Gondal taluka panchayat.
Vaghela termed the development a conspiracy. “From the day we won majority, BJP and the state government have been conspiring against us,” he said.