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Civics — Chapter 5

Local Self-Government — Rural

Class 9 - Total History & Civics Solutions


Short Answer Questions

Question 1

Name one difference between local government and local self-government unit.

Answer

In the local government the administration of the locality is looked after by the officials appointed by the State. Such officials are paid a salary. On the other hand, Local self-government consists of elected representatives. They receive government grants for their activities like sanitation, providing elementary education and settling disputes.

Question 2

Give any one advantage of having local self-government.

Answer

One advantage of having local self-government is that these institution make it possible for local people to take interest in their own affairs and groom them well to take on larger responsibilities later.

Question 3

Name the three tier institutions of the Panchayati Raj.

Answer

The three tier institutions of the Panchayati Raj are:

  1. Gram Panchayats at village level.
  2. Panchayat Samiti at block level or middle level.
  3. Zila Parishad at district level.

Question 4

What is a Gram Sabha?

Answer

Gram Sabha is the general body of Gram Panchayat. All adult men and women in the village registered as voters are members of the Gram Sabha.

Question 5

What did the Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992 provide for in respect of organisation of Panchayats?

Answer

The Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992 provides following things in respect of organisation of Panchayats:

  1. To provide three-tier system of Panchayati Raj for all States having population of over 20 lakh.
  2. To hold Panchayat elections regularly every five years.
  3. To provide reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and women.
  4. To constitute State Finance Commissions every five years to make recommendations on financial powers of the Panchayats.
  5. To constitute District Planning Committee to prepare draft development plan for the district as a whole.

Question 6

What was the view of Gandhiji on Panchayats?

Answer

Gandhiji wanted every village to be a republic. His dream translated into reality with the introduction of the three-tier Panchayati Raj System.

Question 7

Who is the head of the village Panchayat?

Answer

Sarpanch is the head of the village Panchayat.

Question 8

Under the system of local self-government which local body discharges judicial functions in a rural area?

Answer

Nyaya Panchayat (also called Panchayati Adalat) discharges judicial functions in a rural area under the system of local self-government.

Question 9

Name the apex body of the Panchayati Raj System.

Answer

Zila Parishad is the apex body of the Panchayati Raj System. It is a local self government unit at district level.

Structured Questions

Question 1

With reference to local self-government in rural areas, answer the following question:

(a) Name important local self-government institutions.

(b) What is the significance of self-government institutions?

(c) Mention any four salient features of the Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act,1992.

Answer

(a) Important local self-government institutions are:

  1. Gram Panchayats at village level.
  2. Panchayat Samiti at block level.
  3. Zila Parishad at District level.
  4. Nyaya Panchayat

(b) The local self-government institutions play an important role in the functioning of democracy at grassroot level. These institutions provide the foundations on which the entire democratic structure of our country stands. The local institutions provide a training ground for local leadership. They facilitate active participation of the local people as an individual can evaluate the performance of the elected representatives.

(c) Four salient features of the Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act,1992 are:

  1. To provide three-tier system of Panchayati Raj for all States having population of over 20 lakh.
  2. To hold Panchayat elections regularly every five years.
  3. To provide reservation of seats for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and women.
  4. To constitute State Finance Commissions every five years to make recommendations on financial powers of the Panchayats.

Question 2

With respect to Panchayati Raj system answer the following questions:

(a) How did the Panchayats come to be set up on a uniform basis all over the country?

(b) Mention any three achievements of the Panchayati Raj System.

(c) What is Nyaya Panchayat? Mention two of its functions.

Answer

(a) The Panchayats came to be set up on a uniform basis all over the country because of the 73rd Amendment Act which provides three-tier system of Panchayati Raj for all States having population of over 20 lakh. The nomenclature varies from state to state but the basic structure remains a tree-tier one starting with the village at the base, the Panchayat Samiti at the Block level and the Zila Parishad at the District level.

(b) Three achievements of the Panchayati Raj System are:

  1. The Panchayati Raj system ensures effective coordination between government programmes and those of voluntary agencies.
  2. It brings the Government close to people.
  3. Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojna and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme are implemented through Panchayats all over the country.

(c) Nyaya Panchayats are institutions set up for every three or four Gram Panchayats, which performs Judicial functions. It exists only in some states.

Following are the two functions of Nyaya Panchayat:

  1. They provide quick and inexpensive justice to villagers.
  2. They can impose a fine up to Rs. 100 but cannot award a sentence of imprisonment.

Question 3

With reference to Gram Panchayat, state the following:

(a) Its composition.

(b) Its function.

(c) Important office bearers.

Answer

(a) Composition of Gram Panchayat — The Gram Panchayat has Sarpanch, Vice-Sarpanch and 5 to 31 members. (In most of the States, a Village Panchayat has 5 to 9 members.) The Sarpanch is the head of the Gram Panchayat.

(b) The Gram Panchayat has following functions:

  1. Administrative Functions — Some of the administrative functions include:
    1. All public welfare works like construction, repair and maintenance of village roads, cart tracks, bridges, drains, tanks and wells etc.
    2. Upkeep of cremation and burial ground
    3. Sanitation, setting up health centres and dispensaries
    4. Providing primary education
  2. Social and Economic Functions — These functions are not obligatory and can be performed according to the availability of funds. Some of the social and economic functions include:
    1. Construction of guest houses, libraries, marriage halls, etc.
    2. Organising regular village melas, fairs and exhibitions
    3. Planting of trees, parks, gardens and playgrounds for recreation.
    4. Establishing fair price Shops, Cooperative Credit society.
  3. Judicial Functions — Judicial functions are performed through Nyaya Panchayats. These include:
    1. Quick and inexpensive justice to villagers
    2. They can impose a fine of up to Rs. 100.
    3. They cannot award a sentence of imprisonment.
    4. Lawyers are not allowed to appear before these Panchayats.

(c) Important office bearers — The Sarpanch and Vice-Sarpanch are honorary members. They are not paid a salary. A paid secretary to the Panchayat and a treasurer, if the Panchayat is large, are appointed by the State government through the district authorities.

Question 4

With reference to the Panchayat Samiti, answer the following questions:

(a) What is known as the Panchayat Samiti? Who is the head of the Panchayat Samiti? How is he appointed?

(b) State the composition of the Panchayat Samiti.

(c) List four functions of the Panchayat Samiti.

Answer

(a) The intermediate body of the three tier system at the block level is known as Panchayat Samiti.

The Chairperson is the head of the Panchayat Samiti. He is appointed by election from amongst its own members.

(b) The Panchayat Samiti is composed of:

  1. Sarpanchs of all Panchayats concerned.
  2. Members of Legislative Assembly of the State from the area.
  3. Members of Parliament belonging to the area.
  4. Block development officers of the block or the area served by them.
  5. Co-opted members (provisional) representing women, Scheduled Castes/Tribes.
  6. Representatives of the Cooperative Societies (only in certain States).

(c) Four functions of the Panchayat Samiti are:

  1. To supervise and coordinate the working of Gram Panchayats.
  2. To conduct higher education (higher secondary level and above) for a group of villages or at block level.
  3. To provide hospital and health services with various facilities at community block level.
  4. To provide drinking water and execute other community development programmes.

Question 5

With reference to the Panchayati Raj System answer the following questions:

(a) State the name and composition of the apex body.

(b) Who is the head of the local government at the district level? How is he elected?

(c) List four functions of the apex body.

Answer

(a) Zila Parishad is the Apex body.
Composition of Zila Parishad — The membership varies from 40 to 60 and usually comprises — Deputy Commissioner of District, Presidents of all Panchayat Samitis in the district and Heads of all Government Departments in the district; Members of Parliament and Legislative Assembly in the district (as Associate Members in some States), a representative of each cooperative society (only in some states), some women and Scheduled Caste members if not adequately represented; and Co-opted members having extraordinary experience and achievements in public service.

(b) The Chairman is the head of the Zila Parishad. He is elected by the members amongst themselves.

(c) Four functions of the apex body are:

  1. Coordination of the working of Panchayat Samitis under it.
  2. Recommendation for grants-in-aid for local bodies.
  3. Acts as a link between the government and the local bodies.
  4. Help in the formulation of various plans.
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