Panchayats in Rajasthan

The illustrious political personality and the father of nation- Mahatma Gandhi nurtured the vision of Gram Swaraj. His dreams were eventually fulfilled when democratic powers were decentralized and the local government-system in rural areas was established in the form of gram panchayats throughout the country.

History- Rajasthan was one of the major states where the3 tier Panchayati Raj System was introduced on the recommendations of Balawant Raj Mehata Committee. This was inaugurated by Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru on 2nd October 1959 at Naugaur.

Chaudhari Kumbharam Arya (1914-1995) a famous freedom fighter, famous Agrarian leader and parliamentarian was the founder member of the Panchayat Raj system in Rajasthan.

However the Panchayat system had no constitutional status until 1993. On 23rd April, the Panchayati Raj gained constitutional status through the Constitution (Seventy-third Amendment) Act, 1992.

Objectives-The main objective of Panchayati Raj is to develop a system of devolvement and democratic decentralization of powers with an aim of fostering rapid social and economic development and prompt justice. Some social developmental measures include-

  • Improving school infrastructure and quality of education
  • Increase water and electricity availability
  • Reduce the occurrence of communicable diseases
  • Increase income generated per household
The Directive Principle of the State Policy, Article 40 of the Constitution of India provides that the State shall undertake steps to organize village Panchayats and these Panchayats will be empowered with necessary authority to enable them to function as units of self-government.

Present status-The Panchayat Raj system of Rajasthan and other states consists of a three-tier structure-
  • The Village Panchayatas
  • The Panchayat Samitis
  • The Zila Parishad
The Rajasthan Panchayats, Panchayat Samitis and Zilla Parishads were assigned 33, 58 and 19 subjects respectively by The Rajasthan Panchayat Raj Act (1994), however these were subject to 'conditions laid down by the government'. The 32 districts of the state is divided into 241 tehsils, 237 Panchayat Samities and 9,184 village panchayats Currently elections to the Rajasthan Panchayats are frequently held that are supervised by the state Election Commission. In 2000 more than1.2 lakh representatives were elected to the panchayats.

Last Updated on : 01 December 2011