Srinagar: Dozens of village heads today sat on a day-long hunger strike demanding extension of the 73rd amendment to Jammu and Kashmir for empowering the Pachayati Raj system in the state.
The grass-root representatives, who had come together under the banner of Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj Movement, demanded that the state government implement the 73rd amendment in the state.
"If POTA and AFSPA can be extended to this state, why not the 73rd amendment," a banner held by the representatives, who were elected last year, said.
They also demanded that Panchayats be empowered to fulfil the duties for which they were elected by the people.
"One year has gone since elections but we have not been given the powers which were promised to us. People have voted for us and if we are not able to work for them, then we will be forced to come out on streets," Shahnawaz Sutlan, one of the panchs on hunger strike, read.
He warned if their demands were not met, they will go on an indefinite hunger strike.
A sarpanch from Darambug village of central Kashmir`s Budgam district, Bashir Ahmad Mir, warned government of a crisis if the demands are not met soon.
"If they (government) are making a joke of us, they are disrespecting lakhs of people who voted for us, and it will have its repercussions," Mir said.