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Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Woman sarpanch ‘harassed’ by predecessor

Kamla Makwana,a dalit woman sarpanch of Lakhvad village in Mehsana district who was elected uncontested under the Samras Yojna of the state government,has lodged a complaint with the District Development Officer (DDO) alleging that her predecessor has been harassing her due to her caste and forging her signature to issue various certificates on the letterhead of the panchayat with impunity.

Ahmedabad |
April 12, 2013 4:06:42 am

Kamla Makwana,a dalit woman sarpanch of Lakhvad village in Mehsana district who was elected uncontested under the Samras Yojna of the state government,has lodged a complaint with the District Development Officer (DDO) alleging that her predecessor has been harassing her due to her caste and forging her signature to issue various certificates on the letterhead of the panchayat with impunity.

Incidentally,the ruling BJP is celebrating April 14 as the Samrasta Divas (Harmony Day).

Following Makwana’s complaint,Mehsana DDO has sent the certificate allegedly signed by the former sarpanch,Prahald Patel,to the district police for verification by handwriting expert.

Makwana,in her early fifties,was elected uncontested as sarpanch of Lakhvad Gram Panchayat on January 18 last year. Under the Samras Yojna,the panchayat consisted of women only.

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“Right from the day I was elected Sarpanch,Prahald Patel,who is at present a delegate at the Mehsana Taluka Panchayat from BJP,started harassing me on the ground of my caste. In fact,they did not allow me to sit in the Sarpanch office in the beginning. It was only after intervention of police and other authorities that I could sit in the office,” Makwana said.

“However,my harassment continued at the behest of Patel. Recently,we came across a caste/income certificate signed in my name as sarpanch and issued to a local. When we asked the person concerned,he told us Patel had issued him the certificate on the letterhead of the Gram Panchayat while forging my signature as sarpanch,” she added.

On April 1,Makwana made a representation (a copy of which is with The Indian Express) before the DDO. She has also attached a copy of the affidavit by the person whom Patel allegedly gave the caste/income certificate.

DDO H N Thakkar said,“I have sent it to district superintendent of police for verification by a handwriting expert. If Makwana’s claim is found true,we will take necessary legal action against responsible person(s).”

The officer said Makwana’s problem regarding taking charge of the office had been resolved and she was given police protection.

Patel could not be contacted despite repeated attempts.

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