1st Edition

Decentralisation in Contemporary India Status, Issues and the Way Forward

Edited By D. Rajasekhar, R Manjula, M Devendra Babu Copyright 2022
    278 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge India

    278 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge India

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    This volume examines the process of decentralisation in India since the 1992 legislation which devolved powers to local government bodies to ensure greater participation in local governance and planning.

    It studies the functioning of gram sabhas, panchayats, school development committees, water supply and sanitation committees, Residents Welfare Associations, and rural development schemes like the MGNREGS, analysing their effectiveness and tracing the political, administrative, and fiscal powers the local government wields. With case studies from different Indian states, the book examines the functioning of local governance mechanisms and institutions in relation to crucial issues such as citizen participation, the participation of women and disadvantaged groups, fiscal decentralisation, peace-building, economic development, and education, among others.

    Comprehensive and insightful, this book will be an essential read for scholars and researchers of development studies, political science, public policy, governance studies, regional development, political economy, political sociology, public administration, and South Asian studies, especially those focusing on India.

    List of Figures. List of Tables. List of Contributors. Preface. Part 1: Introduction 1. Working of Decentralised Governance in Contemporary India Part 2: Mechanisms to facilitate people’s participation and women empowerment 2. Are Citizens Participating in Grama Sabha to Improve Service Delivery? Evidence from Karnataka 3. A Quarter-Century of the Women Component Plan at the Rural Grassroots Level in Kerala: A Case Study of Mutholy Grama Panchayat Part 3: Fiscal Decentralisation 4. Fiscal Decentralisation at the Sub-State Level in India: A Study of Karnataka State 5. Issues in Fiscal Decentralisation in Chhattisgarh State: A Study Part 4: Sectoral aspects of decentralisation 6. Peace-building and Economic Development through Decentralisation: A Case Study of Conflict-Affected Jammu and Kashmir 7. Landslides, Decentralised Government, and the MGNREGS: A study in Sikkim and Darjeeling 8. Decentralised Delivery of School Education: Evidence from Karnataka 9. Is Decentralised Planning a Success or Failure? Case of Rural Water Supply in Kerala 10. Functioning of Village Water and Sanitation Committees (VWSC) and Sustainability of Community-led Water Projects: An Exploratory Study of Some Tribal Villages in Odisha State Part 5: Urban Decentralisation 11. Urban Decentralisation and Local Governance in the Context of Urban Centralisation: Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh 12. Citizens’ Participation in Local Governance: A study of Residents Welfare Associations in Delhi. Index.


    D. Rajasekhar is HAG Professor in Economics at the Centre for Decentralisation and Development (CDD), Institute for Social and Economic Change (ISEC), Bengaluru. He was Visiting Scholar at the Universities of Oxford, Melbourne, Hitotsubashi, Sussex, and at the Centre for Development Research, Copenhagen. He has worked extensively on decentralisation, social protection, and microfinance, and served in policy bodies constituted by the government. His publications include Decentralised Governance, Development Programmes and Elite Capture (2018) and Cooperatives and Social Innovations: Experiences from the Asia Pacific Region (2020).

    R. Manjula holds a PhD in economics and works as Assistant Professor at the Centre for Decentralisation and Development at ISEC, Bengaluru. She was an Academic Visitor to the University of Oxford, UK, and a Visiting Scholar to the Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo. She has worked on research projects, covering themes of decentralisation, child labour, social security, health insurance, public works programme, and public service delivery.

    M. Devendra Babu is an Honorary Professor at Karnataka State Rural Development and Panchayat Raj University, Gadag, Karnataka, and formerly Professor at the Centre for Decentralisation and Development, ISEC. His areas of interest are fiscal decentralisation, local planning, and public economics. He has published books (co-authored) as well as articles in national and international journals on different aspects of decentralisation. He was previously involved in ‘District Perspective Plans’ and ‘District Human Development Reports’.