62. Institution of suits. (1) Any person, who wishes to institute a suit before a Gram Panchayat, shall present a petition in writing to the Sarpanch, or, in his absence, to any Panch and shall at the time pay the fees prescribed in Schedule III:

Provided that if the court fee stamp is not available at the place where the Gram Panchayat ordinarily sits, an equivalent amount in cash shall be paid.

(2) Any petition presented under sub-section (1) shall be entered in a register of suits, to be maintained in such form and by such person as the State Government may prescribe,

 

63. Wrong institution of suits. If at any time, it appears to the Grain jurisdiction to try a suit it shall direct the petitioner, by order in writing, to file his suit in the proper court.

 

64. Summary dismissal. If upon the face of the petition, or on examining he petitioner, a Gram Panchayat is of opinion that the petition is vexatious or frivolous or barred by limitation or discloses no cause of action, it shall dismiss the petition by order in writing.

 

65. Necessary Parties in suits. (1) Subject to the provisions of clauses (c) and (d) of section 56 of the Gram Panchayat shall add as parties to suit person whose presence as parties it considers necessary for a proper decision thereof and shall enter the names of such parties in the register of suit and suit shall be tried as between the parties whose names are entered in the said register:

Provided that when any party is added notice shall be given to him and he shall be given an opportunity of appearing before the trial of the suit is proceeded with.

(2) In all cases where new party appears under the proviso to sub-section (1) during the trial of a civil suit, he may require that the trial shall beg, de novo.

(3) If the plaintiff or dependant in any suit dies before a case has beer finally decided and the right to sue still survives the suit shall subject to the provision of clause (d) of section 56 be proceeded with at the instance of, or against the legal representatives of the deceased plaintiff or the deceased defendant, as the case may be:

Provided that application in this behalf it has been presented to the Gram Panchayat within thirty days of the death or within such fur titter period as the Gram Panchayat may, for sufficient cause allow.

 

66. Summons. If suit is not dismissed under section 64 the Gram Panchayat shall by summons require the defendant to appear before It and answer the petition.

 

67. Dismissal in default and restoration. (1) If the petitioner fails to appear on the date fixed for hearing or If In the opinion of the Gram Panchayat he shows negligence In prosecuting his suit, the Gram Panchayat may dismiss the suit unless the defendant admits all or any part of the claim, when it shall be decreed accordingly.

(2) A Gram Panchayat shall restore a suit dismissed for failure to appear if, within fifteen days from the date of such dismissal, or such further period which for sufficient cause the Gram Panchayat may allow, the plain tiff satisfies the Gram Panchayat that he was prevented by any sufficient cause from appearing; but no order of dismissal shall be set aside without notice to the defendant. If it has been passed after his appearance before the Gram Panchayat.

(3) A fee of one rupee shall be paid on every application for restoration, under sub-section (2).

 

68. Ex pane decision. (1) If the defendant fails to appear and the Gram Panchayat is satisfied that he has received notice of the date fixed for the hearing or that he is intentionally evading service, the Gram Panchayat may proceed ex parte.

(2) Any defendant against whom a suit has been decided ex parte, may within thirty days from the date of executing any process for enforcement of the decision or within such further period as the Gram Panchayat may for sufficient cause allow, apply orally or in writing to the Gram Panchayat, to set aside the order; and the Gram Panchayat, if satisfied that the defendant did not receive due notice of the hearing or was prevented from appearing by any sufficient cause or was not intentionally evading service of summons, shall act aside the decision and shall appoint a day for proceeding with the suit, but no such order shall be passed without notice to the opposite party.

(3) A fee of one rupee shall be paid on every application under sub-section (2) for setting aside an ex parte decision.

 

69. Final decision. (1) At the conclusion of the trial, the Gram Panchayat shall pass a decree in writing with or without costs of the suits in such forms as the State Government may by rules prescribe and shall enter particulars of the decision in register of suits.

(2) If any money is paid over or if any property is transferred in the presence of Gram Panchayat in satisfaction of a decree it shall enter the Payment or the transfer in the register of suits.

(3) A decree passed by a Gram Panchayat shall be executed by It In sue Manner as may be prescribed and If the Gram Panchayat finds any difficulty in executing a decree, it may forward the decree to the civil or revenue court having jurisdiction and such court shall thereupon proceed to execute the decree as if it were a decree passed by itself.

 

70. Supervision. The District Judge in respect of civil suits or the Collector in respect of revenue suits may of his own motion or on an application of the party aggrieved set aside or modify any decree or order made by a Gram Panchayat in civil or revenue suit or direct the retrial of the suit by the same or any other Gram Panchayat of competent jurisdiction or by any other court subordinate to him if he is satisfied that there has been a failure of justice whether on a point of fact or point of law.

 

71. Supervisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, and the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 to apply only where provided. (1) The Provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, and of the Indian Evidence Act, 1972, shall not apply to proceedings before Gram Panchayats save to the extent mentioned in this Act, but the Gram Panchayat may ascertain the facts of any criminal case or civil or revenue suit by all legitimate means in its power and thereafter ass such order, sentence or decree as may be in accordance with justice, equity and good conscience.

(2) Every Gram Panchayat shall maintain a brief memorandum of Proceedings of each case tried by it.

(3) All orders, sentences and decrees shall be passed in accordance with the decision of the majority of the members present and voting:

Provided that in the case of equality of votes, person, presiding at such meeting shall in addition to his own vote as a member, have a second or casting vote.

(4) All orders, sentences and decrees passed under sub-section (1) shall be announced In an open meeting of the Gram Panchayat by the person presiding at such meeting and decision shall be recorded and it shall be duly signed by an the members of the Gram Panchayat attending the meeting:

Provided that any member not concurring in the decision may record the dissenting note which will form part of the decision.

 

72. Bar to Personal interests. (1) No Sarpanch or Panch of a Gram Panchayat shall take part in any case, suit or proceeding to which he or his employer, employee or partner in business or near relative is a party or in which any of them may be personally interested.

(2) If by reason of the number of Panches disqualified under sub-section (1) there remains no quorum the Gram Panchayat shall send the case or he suit to the Chief Judicial Magistrate or the District Judge or the Collector having jurisdiction, as the case may be, for disposal in accordance with law.

 

73. Compromise and decision on oath. (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act or any other law for the time being in force, it shall be lawful for the Gram Panchayat to allow any criminal case to be compounded or to decide any suit within its jurisdiction in accordance with any lawful and valid compromise agreed upon between the parties.

2) The provisions of the Oaths Act, 1969 shall apply to judicial proceedings before a Gram Panchayat.

 

74. Bar to legal practitioners. Notwithstanding anything contained in the Legal Practitioners Act, 1879, no legal practitioner shall be permitted to appear, plead or act before a Gram Panchayat for any party in any judicial proceedings under this Act.

 

75. Appearance of agents. (1) A woman or any other person specially permitted by a Gram Panchayat, being a party to any judicial proceedings before it may appear through an agent authorized in this behalf.

(2) For the purposes of this section ‘agent’ shall not include any legal practitioner or any person employed as a clerk to any legal practitioner or any petition writer or tout declared as such under section 36 of the Legal Practitioners Act, 1879.

 

76. Difficulties in respect of having no jurisdiction. If at any time, it appears to a Gram Panchayat. –

(a)       that it has no jurisdiction to try a case or a suit;

(b)       that a case or a suit Is of such a nature or of such difficulties that it should be tried by another court.

 it shall, by order in writing, stating, therein, the dates of presentation and return of the petition, direct the complainant or the petitioner, as the case may be, to present the complaint or petition to the proper court.

 

77. Attendance witnesses. (1) A Gram Panchayat may by summons send for any person to appear and give evidence or cause the production of any document. –

(a)                         no person who is exempt from personal appearance in court under sub- section (1) of section 133 of the Code of Civil Procedure. 1908 shall be required to appear in person before a Gram Panchayat in a civil suit. ,

(b)                         a Gram Panchayat may refuse to summon a witness or to enforce a summons already issued against a witness, when in its opinion the attendance of the witnesses cannot be procured without an amount of delay, expense or inconvenience which in the circumstances would be unreasonable;

(c)                         a Gram Panchayat shall not require any person living beyond its jurisdiction to give evidence or to produce a document unless such a sum of money be paid to him as appears to the Gram Panchayat to be sufficient to defray his reasonable expenses;

(d)                         no woman shall be compelled to appear as a witness in person before a Gram Panchayat, she may, however, be examined on commission in the manner prescribed; and

(e)                         if a document is produced in obedience to a summons issued under this section, the Gram Panchayat shall cause the document to be copied, mark the copy after comparing with the original to be a true copy and return  the original to the person producing the same.

(2) If any person, whom the Gram Panchayat summons by written order to appear or give evidence or to produce any document before it, wilfully fails to obey such summons, the Gram Panchayat may take cognizance of such disobedience and after giving such person, an opportunity to explain may, on conviction sentence him to a fine not exceeding twenty-five rupees.

 

78. Processes. (1) Every summons issued by a Gram Panchayat shall be drawn up in such form and shall be signed or sealed in such manner as may be prescribed.

(2) When the person on whom the summons is to be served resides within its jurisdiction such summons shall ordinarily be served by one of the Chaukidars of the local area but the Gram Panchayat may in its discretion have it served by any other person willing to do so.

(3) If the accused or the defendant resides at the time of the issue of the summons outside the local area of its jurisdiction the Gram panchayat may forward the summons to the Gram panchayat within the local area of whose jurisdiction the accused or the defendant resides and such Gram Panchayat shall cause it to be served as if it were a summons issued by itself.

(4) If the accused or the defendant resides at the time of the issue of the summons outside the jurisdiction of a Gram Panchayat, the Gram Panchayat may, where it is not possible to serve the summons, through another Gram Panchayat forward the summons to the nearest Judicial Magistrate who shall cause it to he served as if it were a summons issued by himself.                                                              

 

79. Transfer application. (1) If in any criminal case or civil or revenue, suit before a Gram Panchayat any party intimates at any stage before the announcement of the final order or decree that he intends to make an applications under this section to the Chief Judicial Magistrate or the District Judge or the Collector, as the case may be, for the transfer of the case or suit, the Gram Panchayat, shall upon his executing, if so required, a bond without sureties of an amount not exceeding ten rupees that he will make such application within a reasonable time to he fixed by the Gram Panchayat which shall not be less than fifteen days, adjourn the case or suit for such a period as will afford sufficient time for the application to be made and an order to be obtained thereon :

Provided that nothing herein contained shall require the Gram Panchayat to adjourn the case or suit upon a second or subsequent intimation form the same party.

(2) If the application be not made within the time allowed, the amount of such bond shall be forfeited and may be recoverable by the Gram Panchayat as if it were a fine imposed by itself.

 

80. Stay of proceedings. The Chief Judicial Magistrate or the District Judge or the Collector, as the case may be, on an application for transfer, order a Gram Panchayat to stay the proceedings pending before it and on receipt of such order the Gram Panchayat shall stay the proceedings.

 

81. Payment by installments. A Gram Panchayat may, when imposing a fine or ordering the payment of a sum of money or the delivery of any movable property direct that the money be paid or the movable property by delivered by installments

 

82. Finality of decisions. (1) A Gram Panchayat shall not be competent to cancel, revise or alter any sentence, decree or final orders passed by it in any judicial proceedings, except ex parts decree or orders; and subject to the provisions of sections 59 and 74 no sentence, decree or other order passed by Gram Panchayat in judicial proceedings shall be subject to appeal, or revision by any other court or authority.

 

Resjudicata.  (2) The provisions of sections 10 and 11 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 and section 300 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, shall apply to all civil, revenue and criminal proceedings before a Gram Panchayat.

 

83. Custody of money. Any sum realised by a Gram Panchayat by way of judicial fees or of judicial fines shall be credited to the Consolidated Fund of the State in the manner prescribed.

 

84.  Contempt of Court- (1) The provisions of sections 345 and 346 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, shall apply to judicial proceedings under this Act;

Provided that the fine imposed for contempt of court shall not exceed one hundred rupees.

(2) The provisions of sections 299, 452 and 456 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, shall apply to criminal proceedings before a Gram Panchayat and if any order made by a Gram Panchayat in relation to section 452 and section 456 of said Code is not complied with, the Gram Panchayat shall forward the same to the nearest Judicial Megistrate who shall proceed to execute it as it were an order passed by himself.

 

NOTES

 

Proceedings before Panchayat - Applicability of Cr. P.C., C.P.C. and Evidence Act. - The provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code, Civil Procedure Code and of the Evidence Act, 1872, shall not apply to proceedings before Panchayats, save to the extent mentioned in the Act but the Panchayat may ascertain the facts of any criminal case of Civil or revenue suit by all legitimate means in its power and thereafter pass such order sentence or decree as may be in accordance with justice equity and good conscience.

 

Sentence Passed by Panchayat - Powers of MO Court. - The order of sentence passed by a Panchayat in the exercise of criminal jurisdiction is final subject to the supervisory jurisdiction of the district Magistrate. This necessarily excludes the applicability of Section 439, Criminal Procedure Code, to these proceedings and this Court has no jurisdiction to act aside or modify any order of the Panchayat under the provisions of this Act or under Criminal Procedure Code. High Court cannot under Section 439, Criminal Procedure Code, interfere, with the sentence or order of the Panchayat passed in the exercise of its criminal jurisdiction. It is, however, open to this Court to scrutinize an order of the Panchayat under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India which confer powers of supervision and superintendence over all Courts or tribunals throughout the territories within the jurisdiction of this Court.

 

CHAPTER – V

PROPERTY, FUNDS, FINANCE AND ACCOUNTS OF GRAM PANCHAYATS

 

85. Property of Gram Panchayat. (1) A Gram Panchayat shall have power to acquire, hold and dispose of property and to enter into contract:

            Provided that in all cases of acquisition or disposal of immovable property by the Gram Panchayat, it shall obtain the prior approval of the State Government.

            (2) All property within the local limits of the jurisdiction of Gram Panchayat of the nature hereinafter in this section specified, other than property maintained by the Central Government or the State Government or a local authority or any other Gram Panchayat, shall vest in and belong to the Gram Panchayat, and shall, with all other property of whatsoever nature of kind which may become vested in the Gram Panchayat, be under its direction, management and control, that is to say –

(a)   All common properties;

(b)   All public streets, including the soil, stones and other materials thereof and all drains, bridges, culverts, street, erections, materials, implements and other things provided for such streets;

(c)   All public channels, water courses, springs, tanks, ghats, reservoirs, cisterns, wells, aqueducts, conduits, tunnels, pipes, pumps and other water works whether made, laid or erected at the cost of the Gram Panchayat or otherwise, and all bridges, buildings, engineer works, materials and things connected therewith or appertaining thereto and also any adjacent land (not being private property) appertaining to any public tank;

 

Provided that water pipes and waterworks, connected therewith or appertaining thereto which with the consent of the Gram Panchayat are laid or set up in any street by the owners of any mill, factory, workshop on the like primarily for the use of their employees shall not be deemed to be public waterworks by reason of their use by the public:

(d)   All public sewers and rains, and all works, materials and things appertaining thereto and other conservancy work:

 

Provided that for the purpose of enlarging, deepening or otherwise repairing or maintaining any such sewer or drain the sub-soil appertaining thereto shall also be deemed to vest in the Gram Panchayat.

(e)   All sewage, rubbish and offensive matter deposited on streets or collected by the Gram Panchayat from streets, latrines, urinals, sewers, cesspools and other places;

(f)    All public lamps, lamp-posts and apparatus connected therewith or appertaining thereto; and

(g)   All buildings erected by the Gram Panchayat and all lands and buildings or the property transferred to the Gram Panchayat by the Central Government or the State Government or acquired by gift, purchase or otherwise for local public purposes.

(3) The State Government may, by notification, exclude any street, bridge or drain from the operation of this Act or of any specified section of this Act

Provided that if the cost of the construction of the work had been paid from the Gram Panchayat Fund, such work shall not be excluded from the operation of this Act or any specified section of this Act, except after consideration of the views of the Gram Panchayat at a meeting.

(4) The State Government may allocate to a Gram Panchayat any public property situated within its local jurisdiction and thereupon such property shall vest in and come under the control of the Gram Panchayat.

 

86. Gram Panchayat Fund. (1) For every Gram Panchayat there shall be constituted a Gram Panchayat Fund bearing the name of the Gram Panchayat and there shall be placed to the credit thereof-

(a)   all grants from Government or other local authorities;

(b)   the balance (if any) standing at the credit of the Gram Panchayat at the commencement of this Act;

(c)   the balances and proceeds of all funds which, In the opinion of the Collector, were or are being collected for common secular purposes of the village or villages comprised In the Gram Sabha area;

(d)   all donations ;

(e)   all taxes duties, cesses, tolls and fees impo4ed and realised under this Act.,

(f)    the sale proceeds of all dust, dirt, dung or refuge collected by the servants of the Gram Panchayat and dead bodies of animals not claimed by any person in accordance with any custom or usage and the trees and other produce of the land vested in the Gram Panchayat;

(g)   income derived from the village fisheries which are under the management of the Gram Panchayats;

(h)   income derived from common lands vested In the Gram Panchayat under any law for the time being in force;

(i)     any other amount to be received by the Gram Panchayat from any other source or assigned by the Panchayat Samiti or the Zila Parishad or Government.,

(2) The State Government shall every year assign to every Panchayat a portion of the land revenue not being less than forty percentum of the total annual land revenue realizable within the limits of the Gram Sabha area which shall be credited to the Gram Panchayat Fund.

(3) Every Gram Panchayat shall set apart and apply annually such sum as may be required to meet –

(a) the cost of its own administration including the payment of salary allowances, provident fund and gratuity to the officers and employees and to the secretary:

Provided that the total expenditure on establishment shall not exceed one-third of the total expenditure of the Gram Panchayat in any year;

(b)    every Gram Panchayat shall have the power to spend such sums as it thinks fit for carrying out the purposes of this Act;

(c)    the Gram Panchayat Fund shall be vested in the Gram panchayat and the balance to the credit of the Fund shall be kept deposited with a Scheduled Bank.

 

87. Custody and maintenance of Gram Panchayat records properties (1) The Sarpanch and in his absence the Panch authorised by the Gram Panchayat or by the Block Development and Panchayat Officer in this behalf shall be responsible for the safe custody of the movable property of the Gram Panchayat and such of its records as may be prescribed and immovable property belonging to or vested in the Gram Panchayat shall also remain in his charge.

(2) The Panchayat Secretary shaft be responsible to maintain up-to-date all the record of the Gram Panchayat in the custody of the Sarpanch or the Panch an under section (1).

(3) The Sarpanch or Panch, as the case may be shall before filing of his nomination papers for election or on vacation of his office due to any cause whatsoever shall handover complete charge of such record and property to the Block Development and Panchayat Officer.

(4) If the Sarpanch or the Panch fails to hand over such records or property as specified in sub-section (1) within the period as may be prescribed, the Block Development and Panchayat Officer may apply to an Executive Magistrate within whose jurisdiction the Gram Sabha area is situated for securing from such Sarpanch or Panch such records or property, as the case may be.

(5) On receipt of an application under sub-section (4), the Executive Magistrate may, by an order, authorise any police officer not below the rank of a Sub-inspector to enter and search any place where such records or property are kept or are believed to be kept, and to seize them and the records and property so seized shall be handed over as soon as possible to the Block Development and Panchayat Officer concerned.

(6) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, whoever, in contravention of the provisions of this section willfully evades the handing over of such record or property shall, on conviction by Judicial Magistrate of the first class be punishable with imprisonment either description which may extend to three years or with fine or with both. 

 

88. Taxation measures by Gram Panchayat. (1) Subject to any rules as any be made under the Act or any other order made by the State Government In this behalf the Gram Panchayat shall impose-

(a)   tax on lands and buildings within the local limits;

(b)   on professions, trades, callings and employments other than agriculture carried on or held within the local limits of its jurisdiction, a tax on the basis of the total annual income accrued from such professions, trades, callings and employments.

(2) Subject to such rules as may he made in this behalf a Gram Panchayat shall levy a duty in the shape of an additional stamp duty on all payments for admission to any entertainment.

(3) The State Government may impose a duty on transfers of property in the form of surcharge on the duty imposed by or under the Indian Stamp Act, 1899, on instruments of sale, gift and mortgage with possession of immovable property situated in the Gram Sabha area at such rate as may be fixed by the State Government not exceeding two percentum on as the case may be, the amount of consideration the value of the property or the amount secured by the mortgage, w set forth In the Instrument and the amount so collected shall be passed on to the Gram Panchayat.

(4) Subject to such maximum rates w the State Government may prescribe, a Gram Panchayat may levy the following fees and rates, namely: -

(a)    fees on the registration of vehicles;

(b)    a fee for providing sanitary arrangements at such places of worship or pilgrimage, fairs and meals within its jurisdiction as may be specified by the State Government by notification.

(c)    A Water rate, where arrangement for the supply of water for drinking, irrigation or any other purpose is made by the Gram Panchayat within its jurisdiction;

(d)    A lighting rate, where arrangement for lighting of public streets and places is made by the Gram Panchayat within its jurisdiction;

(e)    a conservancy rate, where arrangement for clearing private latrines, urinals and cesspools is made by the Gram Panchayat within its jurisdiction:

 

89. Financial assistance to Gram Panchayats. Every Gram Panchayat shall on the recommendation of the State Finance Commission constituted under Article 343-1 of the Constitution of India or otherwise, shall be entitled to receive grant-in-aid from the Consolidated Fund of the State as soon as re- appropriation is made by law in this behalf.

 

90. Power to exempt from taxes and to write off irrecoverable amounts. Subject to such restriction and conditions as may be prescribed, a Gram Panchayat may write off any tax, fee or other amount whatsoever, due to it, whether under a contract or otherwise or any sum payable in connection therewith, if in its opinion, such tax, fee, amount or sum is irrecoverable.

 

91. Expenses of Gram Panchayats. All expenses of the Gram Panchayat shall be charged to the Gram Fund.

 

92. Recovery of dues as arrears of revenue. The Collector shall recover any sum due under this Act, other than sums due under decree passed by the Panchayat in exercise of its Civil jurisdiction or as fine imposed in the exercise of its criminal jurisdiction, as if they were arrears of land revenue.

 

93. Power of Gram Panchayat to borrow. With the sanction of the State Government, and subject to such conditions as may be prescribed, a Gram Panchayat may borrow money for carrying out of any of the purposes of this Act.

 

94. Special tax and Community Service. A Gram Panchayat may, with the previous permission of the Director, impose a special tax on the adult male members of the Gram Sabha area for the construction of any public work of general utility for the inhabitants of the said Area:

Provided that it may exempt any member from Panchayat of this tax in lieu of doing voluntary labour or having it done by another person on his behalf:

Provided further, that In the case of emergency manual labour may be compulsorily imposed without payment and if person does not perform such labour without sufficient cause he shall be liable to be punished with a fine which may extend to fifty rupees.                           

 

95. Budget of Gram Panchayat. (1) Every Gram Panchayat shall, at such time and in such manner as may be prescribed, prepare in each year a budget of its estimated receipts and disbursements for the following year and shall submit the budget to the Panchayat Samiti having jurisdiction over the area of the Gram Panchayat.

(2) The Panchayat Samiti may, within such time as may be prescribed, either approve the budget or return it to the Gram Panchayat for such modification as it may direct and on such modification being made the budget shall be resubmitted within such time as may be prescribed for approval of the Panchayat Samiti.

(3) No expenditure shall be incurred unless the budget is approved by the Panchayat Samiti and if the Panchayat Samiti fails to convey its approval within the time prescribed for the purpose, the budget will be deemed to have been approved by the Panchayat Samiti.

 

96. Accounts of Gram Panchayat. Accounts of the income and expenditure of every Gram Panchayat shall be kept in such form and manner as may be prescribed.                                      

 

97. Audit of Accounts of Gram Panchayats. (1) The audit of the accounts of a Gram Panchayat shall he carried out by the authority as may be prescribed by the State Government and a copy of the audit report shall be forwarded to the Gram Panchayat within one month of the completion of the audit.

(2) On receipt of the audit report referred to in sub-section (1), the Gram Panchayat shall either remedy the defects or Irregularities which have been, pointed out In the audit and send to the Panchayat Samiti within three months an initiation of its having done so or shall, within the said period, supply any further explanation to the prescribed authority In regard to such defects or irregularities as it may wish to give.

 

CHAPTER – VI

CONSTITUTION OF PANCHAYAT SAMITIS AND CONDUCT OF THEIR BUSINESS

 

98. Establishment of Panchayat Samitt. (1) The State Government, by notification, direct that, with effect from such date as may be specified in the notification, there shall be constituted a Panchayat Samiti for every Block in a District.

(2) The Panchayat Samiti constituted under sub-section (1) shall save as otherwise provided in this Act have jurisdiction over the entire Block area excluding such portion of the Block area as is included in a Municipality or is under the authority of a Municipal Corporation, a Cantonment Board or a Notified Area Committee constituted under any law for the tone being in force:

Provided that a Panchayat Samiti may have its office in any area comprised within the excluded portion of the Block and in such area may exercise its powers and function over the property and institutions under its ownership control or management :

Provided further that the Panchayat Samiti already constituted under the Punjab Panchayat Samitis and Zila Parishads Act, 1961 shall be deemed to have been constituted under this Act.

(3) Every Panchayat Samiti shall, by the name of the Block for which it is constituted, be a body corporate having perpetual succession and a common seal and subject to such restrictions as are imposed by or under this Act or any other law, shall be vested with the powers of suing or being sued in its corporate name, or acquiring, holding land, transferring property, movable or immovable, whether without or within the limits of the area over which it has authority, or entering into contracts and of doing all over which it has authority, or entering into contracts and of doing all things, necessary, proper and expedient of the purpose, for which it is constituted.

            (4)       When Panchayat Samiti is constituted for a Block under sub-section (1), and the Block is re-delimited, the State Government shall reconstitute a Panchayat Samiti for the re-delimited Block, under that sub-section.

 

99.  Composition of Panchayat Samitis. (1) Every Panchayat Samiti shall consist of-

(a)   six to ten directly elected members from territorial constituencies in the Pachauyat Samiti area as may be determined under section 98 of this Act and notified by the State Government so far as practicable, having regard to the uniformity of population of each constituency;

(b)   Representatives of the Sarpanches directly elected by them from amongst the Sarpanches of the Gram Panchayats in the Panchayat Samiti area:

(c)   Members of the Legislative Assembly of the State of Punjab Major portion of whose constituency falls in the Panchayat Samiti area;

(d)   Members of the Legislative Council of the State of Punjab of any, who are registered as electors within the Panchayat Samiti area.

(2)  The members of the Panchayat Samiti whether or not chosen by direct election form territorial constituencies in the Panchayat Samiti shall have the right to vote on the meetings of the Panchayat Samiti except for election and removal of its Chairman or Vice-Chairman.

 

100. Determination of number of directly elected members of Panchayat Samitis. Subject to the provisions section 99, the number of directly elected members of a Panchayat Samiti shall consist of persons directly elected from the territorial constituencies in the Panchayat Samiti area as may be notified from time to time by the State Government at the rate of one member of every fifteen thousand population or part thereof of the Panchayat Samiti area:

Provided that in a Panchayat Samiti having a population of not exceeding ninety thousand there shall be a minimum of six directly elected members and in a Panchayat Samiti having a population of more than one lakh and fifty thousands the number of such members shall not exceed ten:

Provided further that the population of each territorial constituency shall, so far as practicable, be the same throughout the Panchayat Samiti area.

 

101. Delimitation of Territorial constituencies. (1)  Subject to the provisions of sub-section (2), the State Government shall, be notification: -

(a)                 divide the every Panchayat Samiti area for the purpose of election to such Panchayat Samiti into as many single member territorial constituencies as the number of members to be directly elected under section 99;

(b)                 determine the extent of each territorial constituency; and

(c)                 determine the territorial constituency or constituencies in which seats are reserved for the Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes and Women.

(2)  Each Panchayat Samiti area shall be divided into territorial constituencies in such a manner that the ratio between the population of these constituencies and the number of seats allotted to it shall, so far as practicable, be the same throughout the Panchayat Samiti area.

 

102. Reservation of seats of Panchayat Samitis. Seats shall be reserved for –

(a)   the Scheduled Castes; and

(b)   the Backward Classes;

in every Panchayat Samiti and the number of seats so reserved for Scheduled Castes shall bear, as nearly as may be, the same proportion to the total number of seats to be filled by direct election in that Panchayat Samiti as the population of the Scheduled Castes in that Panchayat Samiti area bears to the total population of that Panchayat Samiti area and such seats may be allotted by the rotation to different constituencies in a Panchayat Samiti.

(2)  Not less that one-third of the total number of seats reserved under sub-section (1) shall be reserved for women belonging to the Scheduled Castes.

(3)  Not less than one-third (including the number of seats reserved for women belonging to the Scheduled Castes) of the total number of seats to be filled by direct election in every Panchayat Samiti shall be reserved for women and such seats may be allotted by the rotation to different constituencies in the Panchayat Samiti area.

(4)  One seat shall be reserved for Backward Classes in a Panchayat samiti in which the population of Backward Classes is not less than twenty per cent of the total population of the Panchayat Samiti area..

 

103. Duration of Panchayat Samiti. (1)  Every Panchayat Samiti, save as otherwise provided in this Act, shall continue for a  term of five years from the date appointed for its first meeting referred to in section 116 and no longer.

(2)  No amendment of any law for the time being on force shall have the effect of causing dissolution of Panchayat Samiti which is functioning immediately before such amendment, till the expiration of duration specified in sub-section (1).

(3)  The election to constitute a Panchayat Samiti shall be completed: -

(a)   before the expiry of its duration specified in sub-section (1);

(b)   in case of dissolution, before the expiration of a period of six months from the date of its dissolution:

Provided that where the remainder of the period for which the dissolved Panchayat Samiti would have continued is less than six months, it shall not be necessary to hold any election under this sub-section for constituting the Panchayat Samiti for such period.

            (4)  Panchayat Samiti constituted upon the dissolution of a  Panchayat Samiti before the expiration of its duration shall continue only for the remainder of the period for which the dissolved Panchayat Samiti would have continued under sub-section (1) had it not been dissolved.

 

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