New LG Law.

The Punjab Local Government Ordinance 2021 expired on June 8. This led to a dilemma on the question of what pattern the already precarious local body government system would follow. In response to the expiry of the Ordinance, the Punjab government has restored the Punjab Local Government Act 2019. Now the Punjab Finance Minister Sardar Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari has announced a new local government system in the light of suggestions of civil society and it appears that the local body elections and set-ups in Punjab will be governed by the Punjab Local Government Act 2022.

In a lot of ways, the new law is progressive. It aims to counter the weaknesses of local bodies of the past by trying to empower local bodies at every stage. For example, previously the government aimed to strengthen local government systems at the tehsil level but due to many practical difficulties, they had to settle with local government systems formed at the district level.

The new law tries to again empower Tehsils by increasing the number of Municipal Committees in a way that representatives of 50,000 people will govern rather than 15 or 20 people to govern. There were several other additions in the law that attempt to make this new local...

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