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Local Government in India
|◾ History of Panchayati Raj||🔠|
|◾ Panchayati Raj: After Independence||🔠|
|◾ Municipal Corporation, Municipality:||🔠|
|◾ Urban Local Self-Government||🔠|
|◾ Types of Urban Local Self-Government||🔠|
|◾ PESA Act 1996: Brief Discussion||🔠|
Local Governance in India
Municipalities – Municipal bodies have a long history in India. The first such Municipal Corporation was set-up in the former Presidency Town of Madras in 1688; and was followed by similar corporations in the then Bombay and Calcutta in 1726.
The Constitution of India has made detailed provisions for ensuring protection of democracy in Parliament and in the state legislatures. However, Constitution did not make the local self-government in urban areas a clear-cut constitutional obligation.
While the Directive Principles of State Policy refer to village Panchayats, there is no specific reference to Municipalities except the implicitly in Entry 5 of the State List, which places the subject of local self-governments as a responsibility of the states.
In order to provide for a common framework for urban local bodies and help to strengthen the functioning of the bodies as effective democratic units of self-government, Parliament enacted the Constitution (74th Amendment) Act, 1992 relating to municipalities in 1992.
The Act received the assent of the President on 20 April 1993. The Government of India notified 1 June 1993 as the date from which the said Act came into force.
A new part IX-A relating to the Municipalities has been incorporated in the Constitution to provide for among other things, constitution of three types of Municipalities, i.e., Nagar Panchayats for areas in transition from a rural area to urban area, Municipal Councils for smaller urban areas and Municipal Corporation for large urban areas.
Panchayats – Article 40 of the Constitution, which enshrines one of the Directive Principles of State Policy, lays down that the State shall take steps to organise village panchayats and endow them with such powers and, authority as may be necessary to enable them to function as units of self-government.