Panchayati Raj System and Development Planning
In India, there has been utter lack of cohesion between the strong political will for decentralization of powers and a relatively weak and ineffective means of a delivery mechanism to support the will at the grass-roots level. Author Hariprasad Chhetri, therefore, feels an imperative for India's elected panchayat representatives (the decentralized form of government) to undergo training in social responsibilities, particularly in light of the changing scenario of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) and the priorities thrust upon them. It is against this backdrop that Panchayati Raj System and Development Planning provides a platform for sharing the author's experiences about the function and faults of the PRIs. The book studies the structure and functioning of Panchayati Raj in the Indian state of Sikkim with special reference to empowerment of women, devolution of powers, participation of weaker sections of the population in the developmental process, resource mobilization by the Gram Panchayats, the extent of autonomy enjoyed by the Gram Panchayats, the state of benefits from developmental schemes, the role of bureaucracy, and much more. These experiences will prove useful for India's rural leaders while managing fiscal resources or making decisions with far-reaching and lasting consequences on the life of the villagers.
Publication Date: 12/31/2008