The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Saturday amended the Panchayati Raj rules, making provision for reservation for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and women in the district development councils.
“In exercise of powers conferred by section 80 of Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj Act, 1989 and all other provisions enabling in this behalf, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir has made amendments in the Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj Rules, 1996,” an official spokesman said.
As per a notification issued here by the Department of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, after sub-rule (3) of rule 108-A, the sub-rule “(3A)” has been inserted.
Under this, the number of constituencies reserved for Scheduled Tribes, Scheduled Castes and women for each District Development Council (DDC) shall be fixed on the basis of prescribed ratio under section 45-A of the Act for each category and applying the principles of mathematic round off with the part fraction of 0.5 and above being rounded off to one and part fraction below 0.5 being ignored for each constituency separately.
The number of seats reserved for Scheduled Tribe and Scheduled Caste as provided in Rule 3A shall be allotted to different territorial constituencies based on the proportion of Scheduled Tribe and Scheduled Caste population to total population of the constituency in descending order, the notification said.
From amongst the territorial constituencies in the District Development Council, the territorial constituency having the largest proportion of the Scheduled Tribes population shall be allotted to them and the territorial constituencies having the largest proportion of Scheduled Caste population shall be allotted to them.
In the subsequent elections, the allotment shall be made so that as far as may be practicable, the territorial constituency reserved for the Scheduled Tribes in the previous election shall not be allotted to Scheduled Tribes.
Also, the territorial constituency reserved for the Scheduled Castes shall not be allotted to the Scheduled Castes, the notification said.
The Centre had earlier modified the 1989 law for setting up DDC under the three-tier Panchayati Raj system and had said that elections to local bodies in J-K will be held soon.
The allocation of constituencies to be reserved for women shall be made on a three-point roster system for each category separately of Women (Open Category), Women (Scheduled Caste Category) and Women (Scheduled Tribe Category), the notification said.
Also, Sub-rule (1) of rule 74 has been substituted to read: “Every candidate who desires to contest the election of Sarpanch/Panch of Halqa Panchayat/Elected Member in District Development Council/Chairperson of Panchayati Adalat/ Chairperson, Block Development Council/Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson of District Development Council shall have to take an oath as per “Form 4” of the rules before the prescribed authorities.”
In rule 74-A, in sub-rule (1), the words chairman and vice chairman of Block Development Council have been substituted by “chairperson of Block Development Council/Member of District Development Council/Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson of District Development Council”.