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 All village panchayats in Gujarat will now have to pay salaries and other allowances to their messengers on par with their counterparts in the state government, the Gujarat High Court has directed.

A bench comprising Chief Justice S.J. Mukhopadhaya and Justice J.B. Pardiwala directed the state to ensure that the guidelines issued by the government in 2008 were implemented.

The court also directed the gram panchayats to act as per the guidelines issued by the state.

‘If they have any difficulty in implementing the direction, it will be open to them to bring the same to the notice of the state government,’ the bench said in an order made available Wednesday.

‘It is expected that the decision relating to pay of the class-IV employees of the gram panchayats will be taken within two months, if not yet taken, and respondents will communicate the decision to the principal secretary, panchayat department, government of Gujarat,’ the bench said.

The petition was filed by Ramjibhai Padalia seeking pay parity between messengers in gram panchayats and the government.

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