Srinagar: There have been rumours in Jammu and Kashmir that over 1,000 sarpanchs have resigned. However, CNN-IBN reports that the number is as low as 50, but the reason for their resignation still remains a significant issue.
Sarpanchs and panchs in Kashmir offering to resign following terror threats and the murder of two village heads made headlines for weeks. But a CNN-IBN investigation now shows that up to 1,100 resignations were not sent in writing. The Rural Development Department in fact received barely 50 applications, mostly from Baramulla district over the past one year. Even many of those who did write in their resignations have reconsidered since.
Rural Development Minister Ali Mohammad Sagar said, "50 resignations have been received by our BDOs and ACDs in Pattan and Sangrama blocks. This may be true that some did not resign officially."
Most of those who announced their resignations in the local press and through mosques following threats issued by the United Jehad council supremo Syed Sala-ud-din did not go ahead and complete the paperwork. The government says that was understandable given the security situation.
Sources say the state government understands their security concerns and is not putting any pressure on them not to go public with the resignation hoax and government is just okay if the announcements made by the Panchayat members ward off the threat to their lives.