Ward Committee and Local CouncilDr. L.H.Chhuanawma Assistant ProfessorDept. of Political SciencePachhunga University College
The ward Committee shall consist of the elected Councilor of the Aizawl Municipal Council of the area, two members each from the Local Councils within the Ward and three other members, who shall be appointed by the Chairman of the AMC on the recommendation of the Councilor from amongst the prominent citizens residing in the ward of which one shall be a woman. Provided that not more than one person shall be appointed from one locality.
The elected Councilor of the ward shall be the Chairman of the Committee, and shall preside over the meetings of the Committee. In his absence, the members present shall elect a Chairman from amongst themselves to preside over the meetings.
The tenure of the Ward Committee is five years (co-terminus with that of the Councilor).
(1) Civic Services: It shall be the function of the Ward Committee to make local and internal arrangements and activities within the ward for the common civic services and common benefits of the community and other matters including social harmony.
(2) Supervision and monitoring: Subject to general supervision of the Municipality, The ward Committee, shall, within the ward, supervise and monitor:-
(a) Detection of violation of various provisions of the Aizawl Municipal Act (2007) such as illegal construction, encroachments on municipal and public properties, public nuisance, evasion of taxes, unlicensed activities, and the like;
(b) Arresting wasteful uses of various municipal services like tap water, street hydrant, street light, parks and play grounds, community center, and the like;
(c) Detection of unclean premises and accumulated garbage's with powers to require the owner or the occupier of such premises to clean and to dispose of such garbage;
(d) Helping health immunization services;
(e) Maintaining essential statistics, and
(f) Numbering of streets and premises.
Besides these, the Ward Committee has the power to identify any uncompleted work or works of poor quality or materials of inferior quality used for any work within the ward and report such matters to the authority concerned for action.
(3) Role in planning
The ward Committee may –
(a) Identify problems of the ward;
(b) Fix priority of problems so identified, and
(c) Prepare a list of developmental schemes consisting of such identified problems and submits the same to the Municipality.
Provided that the Municipality shall not be bound to accept all or any such proposals as a matter of course.
Removal of members:
The Municipality may, on the recommendation of the Chairman of the Ward Committee, remove any member of the concerned Ward Committee. Provided that in the event of such removal, a new member shall be appointed by the Municipality within sixty days.
A Local Council shall consist of five or seven members directly elected by the people. The number of members in the Local Council shall be as indicated below:-
(a) Five members in a locality comprising 1500 voters or less.
(b) Seven members in a locality comprising more than 1500 voters.
The first meeting of the elected members shall be held within ten days to elect the Chairman and the two members who will represent the Local Council in the Ward Committee. The Chairman shall appoint one of the members to be the Member-Secretary before the next meeting of the Council.
Tenure of the Local Council is three years.
Functions of the Local Council
(1) General Functions:
The general functions of Local Council shall be such as may be entrusted to it by the Municipality for the common civic services and common benefit of the community and other matters in accordance with the Mizo traditions, customs and practices as provided under sub-section (3) of section 23 of the Mizoram Municipalities Act, 2007.
(2) Other Functions:
(a) Entrusted functions
The State Government or the Municipality or the Ward Committee, as the case may be, may entrust the Local Council with one or more functions of the Ward Committee within the area of the locality.
(b) Supervision and Monitoring
Subject to general supervision of the Ward Committee or the Municipality, the Local Council, shall, within the ward, supervise and monitor-
(a) Detection of violation of various provisions of the Act such as illegal construction, encroachments on municipal and public properties, public nuisance, evasion of taxes ,unlicensed activities, and the like;
(b) Arresting wasteful uses of various municipal services like tap water, street hydrant, street light, parks and playgrounds, community center, and the like;
(c) Detection of unclean premises and accumulated garbage with powers to require the owner or the occupier of such premises to clean and to dispose of such garbage.
The Local Council is to identify any uncompleted work or works of poor quality or materials of inferior quality used for any work within its area and report such matters to the authority concerned for action.
3. Role in planning:
The Local Council shall render all possible assistance to the Ward Committee in the discharge of the latter's functions in planning.
4. Power to enforce Hnatlang:
The Local Councils shall have power to enforce Hnatlang in their respective areas in the interest of public whenever occasions so demands.
Dissolution of Local Council
(1) The Municipality for good and sufficient reasons, to be recorded in writing and after discreet inquiry by a duly authorized and responsible officer, may order dissolution of any Local Council.
(2) In the event of such dissolution, the Municipality may appoint a prominent person of the locality to be designated as Administrator to take over the charge of the Local Council till such time fresh election is held. Provided that in the event of such dissolution, a fresh election shall be held within sixty days from the date of dissolution of the Local Council.
(The study material is published here with the permission of the author.)