Rajasthan government on 27 March 2015 passed
Rajasthan Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Bill, 2015
in state assembly. With this Rajasthan has become first Indian state to fix a minimum educational qualification for contesting elections to the Panchayati Raj Institutions. The Bill amends the Rajasthan Panchayat Raj Act, 1994 to add provisions related minimum educational qualification for Panchayati elections.
Key provisions of the bill
Contestant for Zila Parishad or Panchayat Samiti elections should have the minimum qualification of secondary education i.e. Class 10 from the state board or any approved institution or board. Contestant for the Sarpanch elections must have passed Class VIII from any school in case of general category. In case of the scheduled area of Panchayat, the contestant should have passed Class 5 from a school to become a Sarpanch. The provision of mandatory functional toilet in the house of a contestant also added in the parent act by amending section 19.
Previously in December 2014, state government had promulgated Rajasthan Panchayati Raj (Second Amendment) Ordinance, 2014 specifying educational qualification for contestants of Panchayati Raj elections. This ordinance was promulgated just before the panchayat elections were announced in the state.