The Gram Sabha is a key factor in making the Gram Panchayat play its role and be responsible. It is the place where all plans for the work of the Gram Panchayat are placed before the people. The Gram Sabha prevents the Panchayat from doing wrong things like misusing money or favouring certain people. It plays an important role in keeping an eye on the elected representatives and in making them responsible to the persons who elected them.
Who is responsible for calling the meeting of the Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat? Explain.
The Gram Panchayat has a Secretary who is also the Secretary of the Gram Sabha. This person is not an elected person but is appointed by the government. The Secretary is responsible for calling the meeting of the Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat and keeping a record of the proceedings.
Who calls the meeting of the Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat?
It is the Secretary of the Panchayat who calls the meeting of the Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat.
Explain the three levels of Panchayats?
In rural areas, the Gram Panchayat is the first tier or level of democratic government. The Panchs and the Gram Panchayat are answerable to the Gram Sabha because it is the members of the Gram Sabha who elected them. This idea of people's participation in the Panchayati Raj system extends to two other levels. One is the Block level, which is called the Janpad Panchayat or the Panchayat Samiti. The Panchayat Samiti has many Gram Panchayats under it. Above the Panchayat Samiti is the District Panchayat or the Zila Parishad. The Zila Parishad actually makes developmental plans at the district level. With the help of Panchayat Samitis, it also regulates the money distribution among all the Gram Panchayats.
Why is Tijia in favour of some permanent solution to the problem of water shortages?
Because groundwater levels seem to be going down every year.
What is the link between a Gram Sabha and a Gram Panchayat?
A Gram Sabha consists of all adults living in an area covered by a Panchayat. The Gram Panchayat is a body elected by all the members of a Gram Sabha. The Gram Panchayat has a secretary who is also the secretary of Gram Sabha. The secretary is not an elected authority but is appointed by the government. The secretary is the link between the Gram Panchayat and Gram Sabha. He is responsible for calling the meetings of Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat. He is also the custodian of the records of the proceedings. Gram Sabha controls the functioning of the Gram Panchayat.
What is Gram Sabha? What are the functions of Gram Sabha?
Article 243(b) of the Constitution defines Gram Sabha to be body formed by persons whose names are present in the electoral rolls for the Panchayat at village level. Gram Sabha performs legislative functions at village level just as state legislature performs the same at the state level. Gram Sabha provides policies and programs at the village level for poverty alleviation, social and economic development, cultural preservation, empowerment of weaker sections of society, etc.
What problem did the villages in Hardas village face? What did they do to solve this problem?
The villagers in Hardas village faced water problem. The hand-pump water had gone well below the point up to which the ground had been drilled. They hardly got water in the taps. The villagers gathered together in the Gram Sabha meeting to find a solution of the problem. After long discussions, they came to a conclusion that they should find ways to conserve water. Watershed development programme would be effective in this direction. They should plant trees, construct check-dams and tanks.
What in your opinion, is the importance of the Gram Sabha? Do you think all members should attend Gram Sabha meetings? Why?
The Gram Sabha is the most important body of the Panchayati Raj System. It is responsible for the planning out the strategies for the development of village, implementation of the ruling provisions. It also looks after the basic amenities of village people. It is also the custodian of the public property of the village. Education, law and order, primary health services are some of the other responsibilities of the Gram Sabha. it also checks the wrong decisions taken by the Gram Panchayat. It keeps an eye on the elected representative and in making them responsible to the persons who elected them. It is important for all members to attend Gram Sabha meetings because it is the only way to participate in the proceedings of various plans discussed in the meetings. The members of Gram Sabha represent different areas. So, it is important for them to put their local problems and development programmes in the meetings. If they remain absent from the meetings, their interests may be overlooked.
Every village Panchayat is divided into ___________.
Every village Panchayat is divided into wards. This is done for the purpose of elections. On Panch is elected from each ward.
Take an example of any one task done by a Panchayat in your area/ nearby rural area and find out the following: Why it was taken up. Where the money come from. Whether or not the work has been completed.
1. Our Panchayat recently undertook the task of building a community hall. It was necessary because there was no such common place where people could gather at a time. It was difficult to hold a general meeting, organise a general function, etc. 2. The money was collected as contribution from the villagers and some part of it was also diverted from the Panchayat welfare fund. 3. Yes, the work has been completed within the projected time and it is now in use.
What is the difference between a Gram Sabha and a Gram Panchayat?
1. Gram Sabha consists of all the adults of a village while Gram Panchayat is elected by the members of the Gram Sabha for a period of five years. 2. The area of Gram Sabha is the entire village whereas Gram Panchayat is divided into wards represented by Ward Councillors. 3. Gram Sabha puts control over Gram Panchayat.
Why are the Panchs and the Gram Panchayat answerable to Gram Sabha?
Because the members of the Gram Sabha elect them.
What was the next agenda for the Gram Sabha?
The finalisation of the list of people below the poverty line (BPL).
Sarpanch is the President or head of the Gram Panchayat.
Panch is the member of the Gram Panchayat.
Recharging - Refilling.
Block Panchayat is a Panchayat Samiti.
District panchayat is also called as Zila Parishad.
What does Anwar suggest?
Anwar suggests for watershed development programme.
What problems do the women of Hardas village face?
The women of Hardas village have to go to the Suru river which is 3 km away to fetch water.
Why is the Nirmal Gram Puraskar awarded and to whom?
The Nirmal Gram Puraskar is awarded to the village Panch/panchs for the excellent work done by him/them in the Panchayat.
What various works does a Gram Panchayat do?
A Gram Panchayat does various works. These works include
The construction and maintenance of water sources, roads, drainage, school building and other common property resources.
Levying and collecting local taxes.
Executing government schemes related to generating employment in the village.
Describe the composition of a Village Panchayat.
A Village Panchayat is divided into wards. Each ward elects a representative who is known as the Ward Member, also called Panch. All the members of the Gram Sabha also elect a Sarpanch who is called Panchayat President. The Ward Panchs and the Sarpanch form the Gram Panchayat. The tenure of the Gram Panchayat is five years. The Gram Panchayat and Gram Sabha have a common secretary. He is a person whom the government appoints. Thus, he is not an elected person. The secretary is responsible for calling the meeting of the Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat. He also keeps records of the proceedings of the meeting.
What are the sources of funds for the Gram Panchayat?
The sources of funds for the Gram Panchayat are:
Collection of taxes on houses, market places, etc.
Government scheme funds received through the various departments of the government through the Janpad and Zila Panchayats.
Donations for community works etc.
Raghu's uncle was the ______ of the village.
Raghu's uncle was the sarpanch of the village.
Why do Gram Sabhas in some states form committees?
In some states, Gram Sabhas from committees like construction and development committees. These committees includes some members of the Gram Sabha and some from the Gram Panchayat who work together to carry out specific tasks.
Fill in the blanks with appropriate words to complete each sentence: The Gram Panchayat's main task is to implement ________ programs for all villages that come under it.
The Gram Panchayat's meet regularly and one of its main task is to implement development programs for all villages that come under it.
Each ward elects _______ member to the village panchayat. Fill in the blanks.
Each ward elects one member to the village panchayat.
The _______ is the head of the Gram Panchayat. Fill in the blanks.
The sarpanch is the head of the Gram Panchayat.
Normally, elections to Gram panchayats take place once in every _______. Fill in the blanks.
Normally, elections to Gram panchayats take place once in every five years.
Any person who is _____ years or above can contest the election. Fill in the blanks.
Any person who is 21 years or above can contest the election.
Write any one important function of a gram Sabha.
The gram sabha is expected to review the functioning of the gram panchayat and participate in taking decisions about village welfare.
What challenges do dedicated sarpanches face?
Dedicated sarpanches faces challenges like opposition from some anti-change mindset peoples, not having adequate funding for welfare of village peoples. Women sarpanches faces even more challenges like gender discrimination and stereotypes etc.
Do you think Panchayats should raise more tax from the village to carry out development works or depend upon government funds?
Panchayat should raise its own resources through taxation on various services provided by it like water supply, toll on village roads, fees for administrative services etc. rather than completely dependent on upper government.
What is one fundamental difference between central government and gram sabha ?
While it is not possible for all people to participate in state level or national level decision making, it is possible at the village level. This is done through the Gram Sabha or assembly of all the villagers who are voters.
Can you think of some reasons why additions or deletions to the voters list become necessary?
After some time/period, there is change in eligible voters in a village. Some existing voters may die or change their residence which requires their deletion from voter list. Also, some new young population becomes eligible for voting list, so they need addition in list.
What do you understand by Public amenities?
Amenities or services like roads, hand pumps or streetlights, they belong to people in the village as a whole. They are called public amenities.
Why do you think only a few people attend the Gram Sabha meeting?
People do not get proper information about the meetings and very few people come for them. Those who come take little interest in the proceedings. Hence, only a few people attend the Gram Sabha meeting.
Read the para under the title Gangadevipalli Panchayat of this chapter and write your comments.
Gangadevipalli village is a successful example of how a village can effectively use powers under panchayats acts. This village has attained: 1. 100% enrolment in schools 2. 100% literacy 3. Supply of protected drinking water to all families 4. Observance of family planning by all eligible couples 5. Vaccination of all children 6. 100% families enrolled in bank saving schemes 7. Total sanitation in the village 8. Complete ban on the consumption of liquor
About _______ gram panchayats come under a Mandal Parishad. Fill in the blanks
About 20 gram panchayats come under a Mandal Parishad.
Why are BPL lists read out in the Gram Sabha meetings?
BPL lists are read out in the Gram Sabha meetings to know whether all eligible beneficiaries are enlisted in BPL list or not. If not included further action to include eligible beneficiaries is taken based on this discussion.
Why it is necessary that all members of the panchayat participate in the planning?
It is often seen that in many panchayats, the sarpanches prepare plans on their own and get them approved without much discussion. Then, the funds allocated for the work may be misappropriated, as very few people know about the plan, budget and actual work done. For this reason, it is necessary that all members of the panchayat participate in the planning and oversee the implementation of the programmes.
Discuss the responsibilities of the panchayats.
1. The village panchayats are responsible for provision of public amenities like maintenance of village roads, construction and maintenance of drains, supply of drinking water, street lighting, cleaning streets, running ration shops etc. 2. They are also responsible for over seeing the functioning of schools, anganwadis, women and child welfare programs etc.
What are the services of muncipality in helping the poor?
Municipality provides various services to help poor like, Sanitation services like Toilets, tapped water facility, Local employment opportunities, Roads, pavements for smooth urban movement , Free or subsidised food grains, Healthcare facilities like primary health care services, hospitals etc.
What do you like the most in cities and villages?
I like parks, gardens, watching movies in theatre, cultural activities like festival celebration in cities. In village, roaming in farms, having various fruits, to sweam in river water, meet with my cousins etc. is my favourite.
What are the public amenities provided by a municipality but not by a Panchayat?
Public amenities provided by municipality but not by Panchayats : 1. Geen spaces in city like gardens, stadiums etc. 2. Solid waste management facilities like Garbage collection etc. 3. Cultural facilities like Auditorium, cultural festivals etc. 4. Tapped water service.
Discuss why government has given reservations in local bodies to women.
It is often very difficult for women to get elected as ward member or sarpanch. These bodies are therefore dominated by men. As a result, the needs and views of half the population go unrepresented. Keeping these problems in mind, it has been decided by the Parliament that 50% of all panchayat ward members and sarpanches will be women and their places are reserved for them.
Short note. Secretary and executive officer.
Each panchayat also has a Secretary, who is a Government employee. His/ her job is to maintain accounts and minutes of the meetings. Major panchayats, which have high income, also have an executive officer appointed by the government.
How do you differentiate the village from the city?
1. A village has small population compared city. 2. Village is largely centres on agriculture activities whereas city is characterised by various activities like services, industries. 3. Village has low level facilities like roads, canals, water etc. but cities have elaborate provisions for these services.
Elaborate on the responsibilities of a Sarpanch.
Sarpanch has the responsibility of implementing all the decisions of the panchayat and looking after the day to day working of the panchayat. The sarpanch is also responsible for the income and expenditure of the panchayat. As such, the sarpanch has a lot of responsibility.
Where do the gram panchayats get funds from to carry out their programmes?
Gram panchayats have the power to levy some minor taxes in the villages including house tax and land cess. They get about one third of their income from these sources. However, for a bulk of their resources, they depend upon grants from the state and the central governments.
Some people expecting that the Municipality has to provide all the public amenities at lower cost. While other think that the Municipalities should also provide dignified working conditions for those who work for it. Write your arguments.
Yes, municipality need to provide basic facilities like health care, education facilities , sanitation services etc. at lower prices as they are must for healthy and educated population. Also, municipality need to provide dignified working conditions for its workers as they are crucial for local area cleanliness, administrative functions, peoples facility services etc.
Cities require lot more planning than rural areas. Give reasons.
Reasons for more planning in cities compared to rural areas: 1. Towns and cities are places where large number of people live. 2. Roads in many parts of the cities are wider and busier. 3. There are more shops, vehicles, and industries in cities. 4. They require a lot more planning and amenities than in rural areas.
Frame a few questions to ask the local Corporator/ Councillor to know the details of work done by the Municipality.
I will ask following questions to local corporator : 1. How is our primary health care centre is working? 2. Is there any funding problem for its functioning ? 3. What is status of tap water program in our ward? 4. Why there is much trash and waste in our local garden ?
More and more people are shifting to towns in search of ________. Fill in the blanks.
More and more people are shifting to towns in search of employment and livelihood.
What should ward Councillors do to ensure that all amenities are working properly in their wards?
Ward councillors can take initiatives like periodic assessment of amenities provided to people . He/she can even setup voluntary ward group to look after their functioning. He/she can use various municipality departments for timely functioning and repair of public amenities in his/her ward.
What role is played by councillors in municipality functioning?
1. The Councillors stay in touch with the people of the ward to understand their needs, and problems and discuss them in the municipality meetings. 2. In order to ensure that all these different kinds of work are properly thought about, the municipality has a number of committees and the Councillors are assigned to these committees.
Urban areas are divided into _____ and ______. Fill in the blanks
Urban areas are also divided into wards and divisions.
Discuss the formation of municipalities.
Like the village panchayats, the municipalities too are formed through elections. Urban areas are also divided into wards and divisions. People are elected as representatives. These representatives are called Councillors in municipal towns and corporators in Corporation cities. Apart from the ward Councillors, there are also Mayors, or Chairpersons, who head the institution.
Vemulawada is a Nagara Panchayat in _______Disitrict. Fill in the blanks
Vemulawada is a Nagara Panchayat in Rajanna Disitrict.
What according to you, a major problem in a city?
A major problem in cities is the disposal of waste materials or garbage and drainage.
What is sub-contracting?
Several municipalities across the country are hiring contractors to collect and process garbage. This is called Sub-Contracting. This means that the work that was earlier being done by municipality workers is now being done by a private company.
How do the departments help in the work of the municipalities?
The municipality has a lot of tasks to perform and all this cannot be done by a few people or by the Corporators or Councillors alone. Hence, each municipality has a number of departments, headed by an officer who is responsible for the proper working of that department. For example, there will be a water supply department, electricity department, education department and garbage disposal department in every municipality.
Write about 3 kinds of municipal bodies.
There are three kinds of municipal bodies depending upon the size of the population:
1. Nagar Panchayat: 20,000 to 40,000 people;
2. Municipal Council: 40,000 to 3,00,000 people;
3. 3Municipal Corporation: More than 3,00,000 people.
Prepare a note on garbage management in Vemulawada.
The authority in Vemulawada makes sure that garbage is collected every day. Workers are provided with wheel-carts, gloves, masks and uniforms. They also use hydraulic dumper bins, trolly auto rickshaws, tractors etc. to collect the garbage and dump it in the yard. This yard is five kilometres away from the town. It is their proposal to separate plastic from other waste and the waste is to be used for power generation.
Name any two taxes levied by municipalities.
Municipalities levy a number of taxes like tax on houses, water and street light taxes, taxes on shops and film tickets.
Write about the Akash Ganga project of Vemulawada town.
Something unique about Vemulawada town is its drinking water supply system. It is called Akasha Ganga. It began in the year 2003. These are overhead pipes. Under the Swajaladhara scheme, these pipelines connect 10-15 households. Five thousand households have been connected in this manner. Water is supplied to the houses on every alternate day.
Why do municipalities prefer to give out work on sub-contract?
Municipalities have very wide range of works to be performed like water supply, street lighting, maintaining and building roads, drainage and garbage disposal, running schools, ration shops, hospitals among others. Thus, it is overburdened with various tasks. That's why, municipalities prefer to give out work on sub-contract.