Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari
Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari

Mumbai: In a first major confrontation, the Governor has sent back the ordinance to revoke the system of direct election of the sarpanch to the state government.

The state government will now table the bill in the ensuing budget session of the state legislature starting from February 24. According to the new bill, a sarpanch will be elected from the members of gram panchayat.

The MVA government has revoked the previous BJP-led government's decision to elect the sarpanch directly from the villagers. The previous BJP-led Fadnavis government had in July 2017 decided to hold the sarpanch election directly.

The MVA government on January 28 this year cancelled the decision. The BJP has been strongly opposing it. Though there was strong opposition to cancel the direct election of the sarpanch, the troika government went ahead with its resolve to cancelling it.

Jorwe, the native village of state's revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat, too, has opposed the cancellation of the direct election. The gram sabha of Jorwe has passed a resolution in this regard.

The state had decided to issue an ordinance, cleared by the state cabinet, which was sent for the governor's approval. But the governor refused to sign it.

He has asked to submit this in the form of a bill before the state legislature. As the MVA has a clear majority, it will have no problem in getting the legislation passed.

The rural development minister, Hassan Mushrif, said the state government will now table the bill in the legislature. "We will follow the governor's directives," said Jayant Patil, senior minister.

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