Four tribal panchayats of Kinnaur in Himachal to boycott PRI polls



Shimla (Dec 14): About 3,326 voters in four tribal gram-panchayats of Nichar sub-division of Kinnaur district have decided to boycott the panchayat polls as no candidate has filed nomination in Urni, Youla, Chagoan and Miru gram-panchayats, protesting against alleged adamant attitude of the state government toward their long-pending demand to cancel the 1,000-MW Karchham Wangtu project coming up in the region.

While talking to HimVani, gram-panchayat Chagoan president Anjana Negi said that no candidate came forward to file nomination till the last date of submitting papers. She said that people of these four gram-panchayats had been opposing the Karchham Wangtu Hydro-electric project as it was sanctioned without taking consent of the affected panchayats.

Villagers were charging state government that it did not consider their long pending demand which was raised by the Representatives of earlier Gram Panchayat bodies time and again in the past and state government did not ever show any interest to take up any action over the demand.

Terming the state government insensitive, she alleged that it did not even feel necessary to take panchayats’ no-objections certificates (NOCs) before allowing construction, despite their representatives having drawn the attention of government towards the devastating effects of the power project on the fragile ecology and life of tribal peoples. The tribal people also accused the state government of using force to suppress their voices and crush their movement

About 3,334 gram-panchayats in the state would go to poll on three phases on December 28, 30, 2010 and January 1, 2011 to decides the fate for about 27,440 posts in rural area of the state, including snow-bound tribal districts.

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