Good Goverance in Panchyat Administration

Ram Rattan Sharma
The rural administrative scenario of India especially the administration of Panchyati Raj Institutions across the nation is marked by both successful innovations and practices in public service delivery as well as a number of pathetic performances. The General weakness of accountability mechanisms is an impediment to improving service delivery system for the rural poor in India. Bureaucratic complexities and procedures make it difficult for rural population as well as the Civil society to navigate the system for timely and quality delivery services. The lack of transparency and dominance of Political biasness that have been associated with the Panchayat administrative system since independence, beside generating corruption, have also led to in Justice and favouritism. Ensuring good governance in Panchayat administration in this regard will be the most efficient and effective measure, where the functioning and administrative affairs of the Panchayats will  be managed in a manner which is open accountable, equitable and responsive to people’s needs.-
Good Governance the priorities:- As majority of the elected members are both first timers and illiterate too. They need to be sensitized about different facts of Panchayati Raj system. Special training programmes must be organized in areas covered by the Panchayats.
Identifying major bottle necks at the local governance level through consultative processes like group discussions, Public hearings, encouraging research studies, assessments and evaluation related to functioning of Panchayati Raj institutions, which will suggest policy action as well as will indicate areas of further administrative reforms. Special efforts must be made to undertake training and awareness campaigns for social Audit by Gram Sabhas , while social audit and Governmental control are necessary for making the rural local self Govt. or Panchayat accountable. The local bodies themselves should be in a position to learn from mistakes and mould themselves according to the needs of the rural population.
Effective resource mobilization by Gram Panchayats through tax and non-tax measures needs to be improved substantially. Resources will have to be utilized  at Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat level, for more pro poor outcome, leading to sustainable reduction in rural poverty and empowerment to the poorest of the poor. More efforts need to be made for  enhancement in the ability of Panchayati Raj institutions to develop Campaign and communication system for awareness  generation among rural communities regarding different developmental agendas & issues. Comprehensive strategies need to be framed to give an impetus to the e-governance initiatives, which will encourage more transparency in Panchayat administration.
There is need for more research work and study with in depth. focus on how a rural institution or organization can be shaped, restructured to be transparent, to be accountable and to ensure people’s active participation success stories in this regard will be helpful in drawing proper policy for the development and need based modification of Panchayat administration, people’s participation and involvement of the people’s organization, like the civil societies, community based organizations, voluntary organizations local NGOs in governance is an essential input in all the stages of development so more efforts need to be made in this direction.
The issue of good governance in Panchayat administration is gradually emerging as a key issue in the sphere of rural development because failure in the rural governing system will result into spread of corruption in adequate availability of basic services for the rural poor, and failure in tackling rural poverty. On the other hand, good governance will minimize corruption the views of minorities will be taken into account, the voices of the most vulnerable in society will be heard in decision making, and the rural administration will be responsive to the present & future needs of the rural population so the need of rural good governance lies at the heart of rural decentralization process. Panchayats being nearer to the people it serves, has every potential to act as a model administrative unit of rural good governance. Rural good governance does not occur by chance, it must be demanded by citizens and nourished explicitly and consciously by the nation. If rural governance policy is not framed properly and rural Govt. structures as well as people’s institutions are not setup properly, rural India will not be able to ensure a sustainable rural growth with equity & justice. The quest for effective governance, particularly at the grass root or village level, is one of the many challenges, being faced by rural India.
(The author is former Dy. Librarian University of Jammu)


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