Decentralisation and Local Governments: The Indian Experience
T. R. Raghunandan
158 x 240 mm
Year of Publishing
Territorial Rights
Orient BlackSwan

The idea of devolving power to local governments was part of the larger political debate during the Indian national movement. It had strong advocates like Mahatma Gandhi who felt that the panchayats had to be the basis of government in independent India. This volume maps the trajectory that decentralisation of government has taken in the decades following Independence and discusses the constitutional changes and policy decisions that make governance more accountable to and accessible for the common man. It presents a set of twenty-five readings that analyse the impact of the 73rd and 74th Constitutional Amendments, which gave autonomy to the institutions of both rural and urban governance.

T. R. Raghunandan is a former Joint Secretary, Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Government of India. He is currently a consultant for anti-corruption movements and an advocate of decentralised governance.

List of Tables, Figures and Maps 
T. R. Raghunandan
1. Political Role of Panchayati Raj
V. M. Sirsikar
2. Decentralisation Below the State Level
Need for a New System of Governance
Nirmal Mukarji
3. Decentralised Planning
An Overview of Experience and Prospects
C. H. Hanumantha Rao
4. Panchayati Raj Bill
The Real Flaw
B. K. Chandrashekar
5. Perspectives: Panchayats versus Multinationals
Case of Du Pont
Norma Alvares
6. Women in Panchayati Raj
Grass Roots Democracy in Malgudi
Poornima Vyasulu and Vinod Vyasulu
7. Democracy and Social Capital in Central Himalayas
Tale of Two Villages
Niraja Gopal Jayal
8. Panchayati Raj
The Way Forward
Mani Shankar Aiyar
9. Grass Roots Politics and ‘Second Wave of Decentralisation’ in Andhra Pradesh
Benjamin Powis
10. Networks of Panchayat Women
Civil Society Space for Political Action
Amitabh Beharand Yamini Aiyar
11. Poverty Alleviation Efforts of Panchayats in West Bengal
PranabBardhan and DilipMookherjee
12. Experiment with Direct Democracy
Time for Reappraisal
Amitabh Behar
13. Building Budgets from Below
Ahalya S. Bhat, Suman Kolhar, Aarathi Chellappa and H. Anand
14. Impact of Reservation in Panchayati Raj
Evidence from a Nationwide Randomised Experiment
Raghabendra Chattopadhyay and EstherDuflo
15. Law of Two-Child Norm in Panchayats
Implications, Consequences and Experiences
Nirmala Buch
16. Federalism, Urban Decentralisation and Citizen Participation
Ramesh Ramanathan
17. Fiscal Decentralisation to the Sub-State Level Governments
M. A. Oommen
18. Functional Devolution to Rural Local Bodies in Four States
Indira Rajaraman, Darshy Sinha
19. Neighbourhood Associations and Local Democracy
Delhi Municipal Elections 2007
Stéphanie Tawa Lama-Rewal
20. Expanding the Resource Base of Panchayats
Augmenting Own Revenues
M. Govinda Rao, U. A. Vasanth Rao
21. Women in Power?
Gender, Caste and the Politics of Local Urban Governance
Mary E. John
22. Revenue Efforts of Panchayats
Evidence from Four States
Pratap Ranjan Jena, Manish Gupta
23. Local Democracy and Clientelism
Implications for Political Stability in Rural West Bengal
PranabBardhan, SandipMitra, DilipMookherjee, AbhirupSarkar
24. Limits of a ‘Devolution Index’
M. A. Oommen
25. Beyond Feminine Public Altruism
Women Leaders in Kerala’s Urban Bodies
J. Devika, Binitha V. Thampi

List of Authors
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