THE MINISTER OF PANCHAYATI RAJ( SHRI MANI SHANKAR AIYAR )
(a), (b), (c), (d), (e), (f) & (g):- A statement is laid on the Table of the House.
STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN PARTS (a), (b), (c), (d), (e), (f) & (g) OF LOK
SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO. 422 DUE FOR REPLY ON 25.08.2005
REGARDING STRENGTHENING OF PANCHAYATI RAJ INSTITUTIONS.
(a) & (b): Article 243G of the Constitution provides for the devolution of powers to
Panchayati Raj Institutions, including Gram Panchayats, to empower them to function as
`institutions of self-government` for the twin purposes of
(i) making plans for economic
development and social justice for their respective areas, and
programmes of economic development and social justice in their respective areas, for
subjects devolved to PRIs including those matters listed in the XI Schedule, and subject
to such conditions as the State may, by law, specify.
A joint programme of action has been chalked at the Seven Round Tables held from July
to December 2004 between the Union Minister of Panchayati Raj and State Ministers of
Panchayati Raj to ensure that on the basis of Activity Mapping, Panchayats at various
levels are devolved with functions, funds and functionaries to enable them to emerge as
institutions of self-government in accordance with Part IX of the Constitution read with
Article 243ZD of the Constitution. This has been followed by two meetings of the
Committee of Chief Secretaries and Secretaries incharge of Panchayati Raj in April and
June,2005 and the first meeting of the Council of Ministers of Panchayati Raj at Kochi
on the 5th and 6th August, 2005. The meeting focused on the measures taken by the
States/UTs for Activity Mapping in order to ensure effective devolution of funds and
functionaries commensurate with the devolution of the functions. A Joint Statement of
Conclusions was adopted at the meeting. It was unanimously agreed that the States would
fix milestones in Activity Mapping and expedite the issue of necessary orders to
operationalise the devolution of funds and functions for devolved activities to different
tiers of the Panchayati Raj System. A copy of Joint Resolution may be seen at Annexe A.
The Govt. is launching an initiative for the creation of Rural Business Hubs to draw upon
local resource endowments and felts need of the people so as to give a fillip to village
enterprises that add value to existing economic activities in rural areas. Under this joint
initiative of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj and Confederation of Indian Industries (CII),
Uttaranchal, Kerala, Karnataka, Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan,
Haryana, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and Assam have been initially selected as pilot
States for the purpose of facilitating the establishment of such Rural Business Hubs.
Representatives from the Ministry /CII have been assigned the responsibility of taking up
the facilitation process in the states concerned for Rural Business Hubs to be established
in association with Panchayati Raj Institutions. Local CII offices in the states concerned
would be actively involved in facilitation at the State level. The first MOU in this regard
has been signed between ITC, several fruit processing units and Panchayat
representatives from several blocks of Nainital District in Uttaranchal. A copy of the
MOU is given in Annex â B.
The core areas identified for development of Rural Business Hubs are in the field of
renewable energy including bio-gas, bio-fuel from Jatropha plantation and solar energy,
Agro industries, Agro Processing and Rural Industries including Khadi & Village
industries and Textiles, handlooms and handicrafts.
(c), (d) & (e): In pursuance of the directive circulated by the Cabinet Secretariat, the
Ministry of Panchayati Raj, in consultation with the other Ministries concerned and the
Planning Commission, is examining new Centrally Sponsored Schemes and guidelines
for existing Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS) with a view to ensuring the centrality of
Panchayats in the planning and implementation of matters listed in the Eleventh Schedule
read with Article 243G of the Constitution. Results of such review are at Annex- C.
(f): Sampoorna Gramin Rozgar Yojana (SGRY) gives a central role to the three tiers of
Panchayats to plan, select works and implement the programme of employment
The SGRY is being implemented by the Ministry of Rural Development through
Panchayats at the levels of District, Block and Village. The main objective of the Scheme
is to provide additional wage employment in the rural areas as also food security, along
side the creation of durable community, social and economic infrastructure in the rural
areas. The resources are allocated in the ratio of 20:30:50 among District, Intermediate
and Gram Panchayats respectively. Other schemes assign roles to Panchayati Raj
Institutions in varying measures and States are given an option to implement CSS
through the Panchayats. The National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme
mandates and assigns the principal role (see Section 13(1) of the Bill, as passed by the
Lok Sabha to the Panchayati Raj Institutions.
(g): Details of the funds allocated in respect of Sampoorna Gramin Rozgar Yojana
(SGRY) are at Annexe D.