Us and them – 4

Neighbor Sri Lanka is impressed by the Panchayat Raj model (shall I say dream) Mani Shankar Aiyar promotes at every possible forum, and they are thinking of part implementing the concepts as a way to enrich grass root democracy and solve the “domestic problems” Island Nation has been facing.

On the other hand, MLAs of our state Karnataka have made a mockery of the spirit of Panchayat Raj (participation and decentralization, right?) by passing an amendment to Panchayat Raj act that will give legislatures power to override decisions of Panchayats. People are protesting, a former minister wants the Governor to return the bill.

How is that? So whats next in the “born-here groomed-there” series after Buddhism, Panchayat Raj is it!?

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2 Responses

  1. Panchayati Raj is a concept that should be followed in Urban India as well. After getting elected, who checks what the “elected representatives” are doing and only the locals can really monitor them on a day to day basis and make them accountable.

  2. Yes Hiren, thats right. Basically local governments have to have more teeth because they are more likely to know about their regions problems and solutions. Executives (MLAs) should only remove roadblocks and resolve conflicts.

    BTW, looked around a lot for good material on the proposed amendments to Karnataka Act. Understandably, not much in main stream media (Panchayati Raj doesn’t sell well). But IndiaTogether has a detailed note: here

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