Sarpanches, Panches warn J&K Govt against upward revision of protocol, honorarium of DDC members


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Jammu: In an interesting turn of events, Jammu and Kashmir Panchayat Conference, a body representing over 35,000 patches, sarpanches and block development council chairpersons across Jammu and Kashmir, on Friday warned the UT administration against increasing the protocol and honorarium of District Development Council members, vice-chairpersons and chairpersons.

“The DDC members including chairpersons and vice-chairpersons are meeting the Lt Governor in the evening and if government decides to make an upward revision in their protocol and salary, then it will have to do the same in case of elected punches, sarpanches and BDC chairpersons,” said J&K Panchayat Conference president Anil Sharma here.

He threatened that all the elected pan he’s and sarpanches will come on the roads if government enhanced the protocol and honorary of DDC members and their chairpersons and vice-chairpersons without doing the same with respect to elected public representatives at the first and second tier of panchayati raj system.“We have not contested the elections for better protocol and perks, but to serve the people,” he said, asking the government to deposit his honorarium to J&K relief fund.

“We want teachers in our village schools, tapped water and 24×7 power supply, besides better health care fir our people,” he said, regretting that the DDC members and their chairpersons and vice-chairpersons were fighting for enhancement of their protocol and salaries instead of fighting for redressing the grievances of their electorate. It appears that they have not read the panchayati Raj act which defines their powers and duties, he added.All the 280 DDC members and their chairpersons and vice-chairpersons are demanding better protocol and honorarium for them.

The government in its latest warrant of precedence kept DDC chairpersons along with administrative secretary or divisional commissioner, vice-chairpersons with vice chancellor of universities and members with deputy commissioner. They have been given monthly honorarium as Rs 35,000, Rs 25,000 and Rs 15,000 respectively.

As compared to them, village panch is getting only Rs 1000, sarpanch (Rs 3000) and BDC chairperson (Rs 13,000).