Wednesday, January 19, 2011

CM’s district visits no substitute for Local governments: Lok Satta

The Lok Satta Party today faulted successive Chief Ministers for visiting districts with pomp and ostentation in the name of ‘pallebata’, ‘prajapatham,’ ‘janmabhoomi’ earlier and ‘rachchabanda’ now. By trying to do what elected local governments are expected to do on a continuous basis, Chief Ministers are undermining democracy and administration by descending on districts with a retinue of officials in a royal fashion.

In a media statement, Lok Satta Party President D. V. V. S. Varma pointed out that Chief Minister N. Kiran Kuma Reddy was merely replicating what his predecessors did by launching a ‘rachchabanda’ program from January 24. A Chief Minister eager to earn people’s recognition by resolving their problems fast ought to have embarked on cleansing the administration and devolved powers, responsibilities and resources on elected local governments, and opted for an ombudsmen system to prevent and mitigate corruption.

Mr. Varma appealed to people to draw the Chief Minister’s attention to irregularities and corruption in welfare schemes including the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, the havoc liquor is causing, and their problems concerning drinking water, health and education. They should demand empowerment of local governments to address local problems.

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