PANCHAYATI RAJ IN INDIA The panchayat raj is a South Asian political system mainly in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. “Panchayat” literally means assembly of five (panch) i. e wise and respected elders chosen and accepted by the village community. Traditionally, these assemblies settled disputes between individuals and villages. Modern Indian government has decentralized several administrative functions to the village level, empowering elected gram panchayats. It is a system of governance in which gram panchayats are the basic units of administration.
It has 3 levels: village, block and district Panchayati Raj, is a decentralized form of Government where each village is responsible for its own affairs, as the foundation of India’s political system. Gandhiji’s this vision of “Gram Swaraj” or Village Self-governance was adopted by state governments during the 1950s and 60s as laws were passed to establish Panchayats in various states. The 73rd Amendment of the Constitution in 1992 provides constitutional status to the Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs). Election: The representatives are elected for 5 years by the electorate of a Panchayat area.
Funding : The panchayats receive funds from three sources ie, local body grants, as recommended by the Central Finance Commission, funds for implementation of centrally-sponsored schemes, and funds released by the state governments on the recommendations of the State Finance Commissions. Powers and responsibilities 1. Preparation of plan for economic development and social justice 2. Implementation of schemes for economic development and social justice e. g MGNREGA , IAY, PMGSY, IRDP , JRY , SGSY, SHG etc. 3. To levy and collect appropriate taxes, duties, tolls and fees.
Panchayats play a pivotal role in implementation & execution of several of the social welfare schemes of Govt. of India like : 1. MGNREGA – an act of parliament to ensure a min. 100 days work for the rural poor in a given financial yr. 2. PMGSY – to provide all weather roads to all villages with a population of 1000 or over. 3. IAY –to help rural people BPL in construction of houses & upgradation of kutcha houses in the form of full grant . 4. SHG – a village based financial intermidiary composed of b/w 10-20 women linked to banks for delivery of microcredit . (mid-day meal)
So, we can see that banks also play important role in this as most of the funds are routed thru banks . The basic concept of Panchayati Raj is that the villagers should think, decide and act for their own socio-economic interests. Thus Panchayati Raj Act is related to village self-governance, where the people in the form of an organisation will think, decide and act for their collective interest. Conclusion : – self-governance is a concept which is the base for success of democracy& for self-governance Panchayati Raj System is a must which are the backbone of the Indian villages.