Eye on 2014, govt hikes honorarium of panchayat representatives

Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the UP government has hiked the honorarium of panchayat representatives, including village heads (pradhans), block heads and zila panchayat chairmen. The hiked honorarium will be applicable December onwards.

The announcement, made in the presence of Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav during the meeting of panchayat representatives held at Saifai Mahotsav Monday, will benefit nearly 51,000 pradhans, 820 block heads, 75 chairmen of zila panchayat and nearly 36000 block and district council members.

Now, a pradhan's honorarium is Rs 2,500 per month as against the Rs 750 he used to get. A block head's honorarium has been hiked from Rs 3,000 to Rs 7,000 per month while zila panchayat chairman is raised to Rs 10,000 per month from Rs 4,000.

The block development council (BDC) members will now get allowance of Rs 500 per day and district development council members (DDC) will be given Rs 1,000 per day while attending the council meetings. Earlier, these members were entitled for payments of Rs 200 and Rs 300, respectively.

The three-tier panchayat elections in the state are scheduled in 2015. Special buses were deployed by cooperative and panchayati raj departments for ferrying in nearly 20000 pachayat representatives to attend the function.

SP president Mulayam Singh Yadav, general secretary Ramgopal Yadav, ministers Shivpal Yadav and Balram Yadav were also present during the function.

Mulayam told the panchayat representatives: "You people should realise your power. You can change the destiny of the country. You are all aware of MNREGA scheme which is loaded with corruption. Pradhans should keep a tab on it, else MNREGA means — loot, siphon money and vote for Congress."

He also said the pradhans were the first ladder of democracy. "In every elections, pradhans play a key role in the victory of Lok Sabha candidates. Remain cautious that there is no mistake in these important elections and SP gets so much power that it gets an important role at the Centre," he added.

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