Local Self Governing Institutions and Fiscal Decentralisation in India-Form to Function
16 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2012
Date Written: December 26, 2012
The aim of this paper is to analyze the issues and challenges linked with fiscal decentralization to the local self governing institutions in India. Local self Governing Institutions in India have been playing a prominent role in implementing development programs. The 73rd amendment act and provisions of Panchayat Act (PESA) have explicitly codified the role of such institutions with regard to implementation of development programs. It is argued that local self-governing institutions on the basis of their time and place knowledge develops plans and programs based on local needs and resources and implements such plans and programs keeping the magnitude of social and political marginalization in mind. Devolution of powers to PRIs in India in last two decades receives widespread importance because of increasing role played by PRIs in development arena. It is argued that the Local Self-Governing Institutions can become instrumental by promoting development in India, if require inter and intra institutional issues will be taken into consideration. These institutions can perform effectively if needful fiscal, political and administrative powers will be provided within an appropriate institutional framework. However, the issues related to fiscal devolution to local self-governing institutions assume significant considering the current development role of PRIs in India.
The present paper critically examines the importance of Fiscal Decentralization for local self-governing institutions in Indian federation and how the Fiscal Decentralization agenda for local level governing institutions disturbed because of prevailing institutional and political compulsion. The analysis of this paper is based on secondary source of information. The paper covered three broad aspects i.e. Decentralization and fiscal decentralization, fiscal decentralization to Local Self-Governing Institutions in India and issues as well as challenges for fiscal decentralization. The paper argues that factors like weak institutional design, absence of appropriate mechanism, problem in federal structure and above all, prevailing political compulsion have disturbed the fiscal devolution agenda of local levels government in India. Seen from the State specific experiences with regard to status of fiscal devolution and recommendation of the State Finance commissions, it is suggested that policies related to the States and local governments’ financial relationship need a fresh review. The paper concludes with a broad assumption that local governments should have upper hand in designing development programs and raising revenue in keeping the available local resources in mind.
Keywords: decentralization, fiscal decentralization devolution institution Panchayati Raj Institution (PRI) India
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