Patna: Following rising incidents of killings of newly elected leaders of the three-tier panchayati raj system in Bihar, home department has directed all district magistrates and SPs to provide security cover and issue licence for arms to them on demand.
Panchayati Raj minister,Samrat Chaudhury said the home(police) department in a circular to the DMs and SPs directed that arms licences should be issued to the deserving panchayati raj leaders in accordance to the provisions of the Indian Ordinance Act,2016.They would be entitled to have small fire arms,like pistols and revolvers,
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was concerned over the rising incidents of murder of newly elected panchayat representatives and their family members in different parts of the state. He directed the home department to take care of the security of the panchayati raj leaders.
According to CM, state government has also decided to hold speedy trial of the accused arrested for attacks on the panchayat leaders and instructed deputy SPs would conduct investigations in such cases.
State government has released Rs 2522 crores for the panchayati raj institutions for setting up panchayat courts, construct offices, provide computers, street lights etc. Fight for the share in the construction and tender works is believed to be main reason for killings of the newly elected leaders at grass root level by the old leaders. In the panchayati raj elections, 70 per cent of the sitting mukhiyas and sarpanchas were defeated.
Under the provisions of the sixth finance commission,funds are directly released to the panchayats by the Centre and their leaders become parallel centres of power.
According to the police records,newly elected village heads in Kosi and Seemanchal areas of the state were targets of the traditional mukhiays and sarpanchas.In last two months,eight village heads have been killed.
They included Niraj Kumar,mukhiya of Faridpur village in Patna,:Puja Kumari and her husband Sanjiv Kumar in Bhadar south,Gopal Kumar of Girdhapur in Lakhisaraia,Mohammad Salim in Suryagarha,Parmanand Tuddu in Ajabganj in Munger and Prakash Mahto in Sikandara in Jamui district.
There are 8387 gram panchayats and 584 panchayat samities in state with 2.57 lakh newly elected ward councillors.