Jai Ram Thakur, Rural Development & Panchayati Raj Minister informed today that the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Government of India has selected Zila Parishad Kullu, Panchayat Samiti Nirmand, District Kullu, Panchayat Samiti Salooni, District Chamba, Gram Panchayat Shakla Barog, Development Block Nankhari, District Shimla, Gram Panchayat Chamyana, Development Block Mashobra, District Shimla as best Panchayats of the State for getting the awards of 25 lakh, 15 lakh each and four lakh each respectively as incentive grant under the Panchayat Empowerment & Accountability Incentive Scheme (PEAIS) for the year 2011-12.

He said that in addition to this, the Ministry of Panchayati Raj has selected the Gram Panchayat Ser-Banera, Development Block and District Solan as best Gram Sabha for the award money of Rs five lakh. These Panchayats of the State will be honoured on the National Panchayati Raj Day on 24th April, 2012 at Vigyan Bhawan New Delhi. The selection of these Panchayats as best Panchayats had not only brought laurels to the State but their efforts have provided a momentum to the developmental activities in Panchayats. Besides, these Panchayat have emerged as source of inspiration for other Panchayats of the State for socio and economic development, he added. Jai Ram Thakur has congratulated the elected representatives and the Public of the Panchayati Raj Institutions for being adjudged as best Panchayats.

Rural Development & Panchayati Raj Minister said that the Panchayat Empowerment and Accountability Incentive Scheme is being implemented by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Government of India with a view to make the Panchayati Raj Institutions more efficient and transparent in their functioning. Under the scheme, the best Panchayat amongst all the three levels i.e. Gram Panchayat, Panchayat Samiti and Zila Parishad is selected through the process of marking system indicating devolution index and questionnaire regarding important aspect relating to activities of the Panchayats, devolution of functions, powers and responsibilities to the Panchayats etc.

He further said that the above Panchayats have been awarded under the said scheme for functioning as per the prescribed parameters like meeting of the Gram Sabha, quorum, conduct of these meetings as per the provisions of the Act and Rules, implementation of the decisions and maintenance of the proceeding of the meeting, problems of the area of

Panchayats, functions of the Panchayats such as approval of the schemes, review of budget and follow-up action in respect of passed resolution of Panchayats, meeting of the standing committees, training programmes, enhancing the capability of the employees, presentation of the annual plan, mobilization of the sources of income, Creation of property, method adopted for recovery of taxes, implementation of Centre and State schemes, target and physical achievements, programme related to women welfare, Safe Drinking Water Scheme, Total Sanitation, initiative taken for bringing improvement in the life of handicapped, child labour etc, settlement of the audit paras, settlement of complaints and information provided under the provisions of the Right to Information Act, to bring awareness amongst the common people about the various programmes of the State and Centre Government.

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