Thursday, October 06, 2016

Gandhi and Governance: Relooking Development at Grassroot Level

Mainstream, VOL LIV No 41 New Delhi October 1, 2016

By Pradeep Nair and Sandeep Sharma

Originally Published by Mainstreamweekly

The Gandhian idea of governance and development at the community level is a people-centred approach that combines a number of activities to ensure people (rural people) access to relevant information so that they shall collaborate and participate in development. Through information and knowledge, the rural voices may express their expectations and can share their know
ledge. Here community governance is a powerful driver, especially for the marginalised people, to change their lives for better. The Gandhian idea of government and governance is about to enhance rural communication services at the grassroot level so that it can empower the local people to plan and manage the development processes.

Any government—whether of Nehru, Gandhi (Indira and Rajiv) or Modi—in its policy docu-ments/election manifestos highlights what rural people need in order to move up the socio-economic ladder. Prime Ministers in India never fail to mention ‘Gandhi’ and ‘Village’ in their promises. They feel happy to speak about invest-ments and technologies that would improve rural livelihood. But in practice, the efforts are not really sufficient to sustain the desired change at the grassroot level. The failure is because of two primary reasons—lack of participation and ineffective communication. This commentary appreciates the Gandhian understanding of governance and is evolved with an analysis that how relooking this concept of governance could help the formal and informal agencies of development and governance to build a platform for dialogue and common understating for rural communities who are the real decision-makers in good Read More

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