Gangtok, Oct 24 (PTI) The main opposition party Sikkim Krantikari Morcha today released its manifesto for the November 3 panchayat election promising to decentralise powers to panchayat representatives in the event of election of its candidates.

Releasing the manifesto, SKM acting president Kunga Nima Lepcha charged the ruling Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) led by Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling with stifling democracy in the state.

“Decentralisation of administrative powers to the panchayats is our foremost priority,” Lepcha, also an MLA, told reporters here.

Panchayat candidates of the SKM will also strive to root out corruption allegedly institutionalised by the SDF in the two-tier panchayati raj in Sikkim, he alleged.

With Sikkim to go for Assembly polls with the general election due in 2019, Lepcha said that his party’s panchayat poll manifesto will also be the action plan in the state if the SKM comes to power.

The SKM is contesting 77 gram panchayat and 16 zilla panchayat seats.

Sikkim has two-tier panchayati raj system under which there are 1040 gram panchayat and 111 zilla panchayat seats.

Out of these, 536 gram panchayat wards and 27 zilla panchayat seats have been won uncontested by the ruling SDF candidates.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.