Panel to suggest 17 more local units in State 2

- Binod Ghimire, Kathmandu

Mar 4, 2017-After two months of dilly-dallying, the government taskforce is finally close to recommending 17 more village councils in Province 2 and two in Hill districts elsewhere.

This will take the total number of local level units to 738, from the 719 recommended by the Local Level Restructuring Commission.

The report, to be submitted to Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, has also 

recommended changing the boundaries in around a dozen districts across the country. One more local unit has been proposed each for Manang and Bajhang.

The total number of local units in Tarai/Madhes will reach to 253 from the 236, much less than the agitating Madhes-based parties have been demanding. 

The total number of local units in the eight districts of Province 2 will be 123, up from 106 recommended by the commission in the past.

“We have increased the numbers not exceeding the limit set by the commission,” said Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development Hitraj Pandey, the coordinator of the taskforce. The commission, while restructuring the local bodies, had fixed a ceiling of 744.

However, LLRC officials said they are against the revision to their report claiming that the government does not have the authority to change the recommendations of the constitutional body.

The dissident parties have demanded at least 100 more local units in the 20 districts in the plains as a precondition to participating in the local polls scheduled for May 14.

They have objected to the recommendations of the LLRC saying that the number of local units in the Tarai is not proportional to the population there. 

While around 51 percent people live in Tarai/Madhes, the commission allocated just 32 percent of village and municipal councils to the region.

The Cabinet on February 2 formed the three-member team led by Pandey to revise the report after consulting with political leaders in the disputed areas. 

There were demonstrations also in some Hill districts against the decision of the commission contrary to the locals’ suggestions.

The regional parties have been demanding 45 percent of local bodies in the region. With the new additions, the percentage has reached 34. Implementation of the LLRC report is a must for holding the local elections. The report will be implemented once the Cabinet publishes it in the Nepal Gazette after approval.

The Proposal

Districts     New units    Total

Saptari    4    16

Siraha    3    15

Dhanusha     4    17

Mahottari     1    15

Sarlahi     1    17

Rautahat     0    15

Bara     2    15

Parsa     2    13

Published: 04-03-2017 07:43

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