“Local Self government the need for awareness, a democratic model”

R. Hingba Paul

Asst. Prof., Dept. Of Political Science, St. Joseph’s College, Jakhama, Nagaland  

“Local government is a part of national government which looks after the administrative needs of the people of a particular area”   “J.J. Clarke”

Local Self government is the wizard word today for present society. It can be exclaimed as the instrument for fulfilment of local needs and wants with local initiatives in spite, strong central government control. We seem the localites need power and authority. Yes, we do and I am never opposed to the same, as we live in a democratic world. This modern transformation of our society through Globalisation, Liberalisation and Privatisation has made all possibility for self determination. The power for determination was never barred, never before and has been an open door for us all since time immemorial.  

My question here is what is Local self Government?  Do we really understand by what it means? Or are we looking for a system that we have, to a far away distance. We the Naga’s have lived in it all from time passed and on till now. But the sad part is that we never knew how to materialise or use it, in a manner as determined. The Nagas seeking for integrated Naga inhabitation, so are the Gorkhas and the Bodos. The striving for Sovereign status and autonomy are the other factor determining local self government.  Or do local self government mean mere sanction of the 29 subjects or the 18 subjects mention in the Indian constitution of schedule XI and XII alone dormant? The needed regulation and progress is not only in the list of the provided schedules. The truth is, there are much more as to start from the activities of our birth to the last taking of our breath. Understanding just knows the society’s needs and wants and not the individual needs alone, been a self giant.  

Local self government is a great measure but this local government of hide and seek are the total fractures for the progressive movement of the society. When practicing local self government there are important need determinations to be regularised, the pre-focus and plan objective of its function and duties. There is the need to know Local self government is not for self, but it is for the welfare of the local society. Knowing and ignoring is not a complete system. Knowing to know and correct is a perfect match for a successful and value local self government. By its practices we should not allow ourselves to trouble our own selves. The 73rd & 74th Amendment, Local Government are of the two levels rural and urban. 

The Rural local government is the Panchayati Raj system of three tier structure. (a) Gram Panchayat as the lowest village level government. (b) The Panchayat Samiti, the block level and (c) Zilla Parishad the top rural government at the district level. The Urban local government is the municipalities in cosmopolitan and metropolitan cities and town area. (a) The Nagar Panchayat, a transitory government from Panchayati Raj to Municipalities. (b) The municipal council the intermediate level and (c) The Municipal Corporation, the highest level of urban local government. These structures are added with numerous functions and responsibilities. If performed, the root of all proceeding growth and development can unleash its knots of hurdle to regions dynamic fostering growth and development of our society.  

Understanding local self government is the art of implementing allocated power and authority in a judiciously appropriate ways for the maximum benefit of localities as a whole and not the lonely leader and the individual. Local power and authority is not meant for exploitation and depriving of the masses and benefits for the leaders and representatives. Role of leader is supposed to be a service provider but the leaders of today; a leader’s position has become a stand for business and extortion.  

Quoting, Harris: “Local government is a system of government in which people living in a particular locality have a responsibility and raise money for their expenditures”. Failing to raise fund for expenditure, at least our local elected leaders from the chairman to MP and from the clerk to the deputy commissioner and deputy collector should focus on the need for public awareness and education on the basic requirement for attainment of sanction benefits for the masses. The Right to Information and Activist should be supported. This could bring down all corruptions and nepotism of our government and society, with no third party to deprive the rightful provisions of our public masses.