Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Panchayati Raj
22-November-2010 15:07 IST
Strengthening of Panchayati Raj
Union Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Dr.C.P.Joshi today informed the Lok Sabha that Article 243 (G) of the Constitution necessitates the State Legislatures to empower Panchayats with such powers and authority as may be necessary to enable them to function as institutions of Local Government along with devolution of powers and responsibilities with respect to preparation of plans and schemes for economic development and social justice and for implementation of such schemes. Ministry of Panchayati Raj is persuading the various State Governments and sister Ministries to devolve adequate functions, funds and functionaries to the Panchayats.

Different Ministries have launched their Centrally Sponsored Schemes that have varying levels of powers/ roles for Panchayats and Gram Sabhas. The Ministry of Panchayati Raj has taken up the matter with various central Ministries so as to provide adequate roles to Panchayats in their schemes.

Within the Constitutional framework, Panchayats is a State subject and States enact legislation considered suitable to their context. States vary in the extent of power that they have devolved to the Panchayats to plan, implement and monitor schemes for economic development and social justice.

The Minister was replying to a written question whether the Government is taking steps to strengthen the Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) in order to bring economic reforms in rural areas; and whether the Government proposes to restructure various centrally sponsored schemes to give more powers to Panchayats and Gram Sabhas.