Panchayati raj system in India; what is Panchayati raj – The Panchayati Raj system is a unique feature of Indian Democracy. Local self-government bodies give people the opportunity to participate in decision making. Political decentralization is good for the welfare of the people in any democracy. Panchayati Raj system made an extraordinary change in countries. It helps to connect the people towards democracy. people get more connected to democracy.
Evolution of Panchayati Raj System in India
Local self-governments existed in ancient India. Until the time of Mughals, villages were self-sufficient and they were governed by panchayats. Panchayats were degraded during the British rule with the aim of destroying local autonomy and strengthening the central government. Later, an attempt was made to reorganize the Panchayats from 1882 onwards.
The committees appointed for Panchayati raj system are as follows:
- Balwant Rai Mehta Committee
- Ashok Mehta Committee
- G V K Rao Committee
- L M Singhvi Committee
The Balwant Rai Mehta Committee was set up by the Government of India in 1957 under the chairmanship of Balwant Rai Mehta.The purpose of the committee was to examine the work of the Community Development Program and the National Extension Service, as well as to suggest improvements.
Recommendations of Balwant Rai Mehta Committee
1) 3 Tier panchayatiraj system – i) Gram Panchayat, ii) Panchayat Samiti iii) Zillha Parishad
2) Appointment of District Collector as Chairman of Zilla Parishad.
3) Democratically decentralization of local government
Ashok Mehta Committee was appointed by Government of India in 1977 to come up with new ideas for strengthening the Panchayati Raj system in India and to find solutions to the flaws in the system.
Recommendations of Ashok Mehta Committee
1) Two-tier panchayati raj system – i) Zilla Parishad at the district level, ii) the Mandal Panchayat (Group of villages)
2) Participation of political parties in Panchayat Elections
3) Panchayat Raj Institutions should have the power to levy taxes.
4) Seats should be reserved for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes on the basis of their population
- G V K Rao Committee was appointed by Government of India in 1985
L M Singhvi Committee was appointed by the Government of India in 1986