"When Panchayat Raj is established, public opinion will do what violence can
never do" -- By Gandhiji
Gandhi ji is well-known, not for his image on Indian currency, but for his
efforts and dreams for India. Without Gandhi ji, India today would not be the
same. Gandhi ji traveled extensively throughout India in order to establish his
ideal village system. The vehicle of the ideal political and economic system
starts with its fundamental component, which is the village system.
An individual had maximum freedom and opportunity to develop his personality to
the greatest extent. In these republics, the state, on which the roots of
democracy depend, would be eliminated. According to him, centralization cannot
be sustained as a system without adequate force. It cannot be overstated that
Gandhi's viewpoint is opposed to centralization or unitary government.
Panchayat is the lowest and most fundamental unit of a decentralized system.
Participatory democracy should be followed in politics, and everyone should be
permitted to participate directly. The greatest use of the resources available
in the village is fundamental to the development of the panchayat. Gandhi ji
also quotes" Democracy becomes an impossible thing until power is shared by all,
but let not democracy degenerate into mobocracy"
Gandhi ji also proposed a scheme of government under the Gandhi ji Constitution,
beginning from the primary unit, the village panchayat, and going up to the
level of the All India Panchayat, with power being assigned to all levels of the
In his presidential address at the Belgaum Congress, Gandhi said that the
panchayat was not only the right medium for securing cheap justice but also an
instrument for avoiding reliance on the government for the settlement of mutual
On the occasion of the 68th Independence Day Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi
announced- "Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana for the empowering Indian village.
"I know that work (of shaping the ideal village) is as difficult as making India
an ideal country," Gandhi ji said. He will have provided a pattern not only for
the whole country but perhaps for the whole world. "More than this, a seeker may
not aspire to."
The 73rd and 74th Constitutional Amendments show that the government realized
that the centralized government was not enough to solve the basic issue. Gandhi
ji said that "our cities are not India; India lives in her seven and a half lakh
villages." The issue could be resolved through a bottom-up approach. The
Panchayat-Panchayat-PESA Act is significant to the history of the Panchayat Raj
Government, which understood that the Adivasi people were trying to protect
their "Jal Jangle and Jamin." They enjoy their cultural and historical rights
through the PESA Act of 1996.
Dr. George Mathew is the president, and he presents the context of the Gandhian
point of view in the panchayat. He stated that in the past several years, there
has been silence about panchayats. The Panchayat must break the silence. He
questioned that "the dream of Mahatma Gandhi is yet to be realized; are we going
to realize it?" The basic question still remains, "How do we reach out to these
village panchayats?" Later in his address, he said, "We have been suffering
because of the pandemic in the past and present." In the constitution, 29
subjects are given to the panchayat; nearly 30 years have passed. Is the Indian
Constitution's grant of 29 subjects to the panchayat a reality? He even wrote an
article in the Times of India on April 15, 2013 called "Panchayat Raj or
National Panchayat Day: the first national panchayat day was celebrated in 2010.
Since then, every year on April 24, national panchayat day is celebrated in
India. On this noteworthy day, the union minister of panchayat raj organizes the
national conference and awards the best-performing panchayats with the panchayat
shashaktikaran paraskar/Rashtriya Gaurav Gram Sabha Puraskar.
In 2022, we became the 12th national panchayat, and on the same day, the Prime
Minister launched the e-property card under the SWAMTIVA scheme.
In "India of My Dream," chapter 25, "Panchayat Raj," Gandhi ji wrote, "When
panchayat raj is established, public opinion will do what violence can never
do." The present power of the zamindars, the capitalists, and the rajas can hold
sway so long as the common people do not realize their own strength. If the
people do not cooperate with the evil of zamindari or capitalism, they must die
of insanity. In panchayati raj, only the panchayat will be obeyed, and the
panchayat can only work through the laws it makes.
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