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=> The Supreme Court noted that years of delay in conducting elections to over 23,000 local bodies in Madhya Pradesh shows the breakdown of the rule of law.
Supreme Court (SC)’s stand:
=> Inviolable: The SC held that the State Election Commissions across the country cannot skip their constitutional obligation to conduct polls for Local Bodies every five years. This constitutional mandate is inviolable.
=> The court found that besides a staggering 23,000 rural local bodies, polls had not been held in 321 urban local bodies in Madhya Pradesh since 2019-2020.
=> Ongoing activity of delimitation or formation of the ward cannot be a legitimate ground to be set forth by any authority, much less the State Election Commission, or any other excuse like:
=> Direction: The court directed the Madhya Pradesh State Election Commission to announce the election programmes to the local bodies. The court also held that its orders for Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh apply to all states and Union Territories where a similar situation prevails.
Characteristics Of Local Government:
=> Local Areas: A local government has a well-defined area which is fixed by the concerned state government. This area can be termed a city, town or village.
=> Local Authority: The administration of a particular locality is run by an authority or body of persons who are elected directly by the people residing in a particular local area.
=> Local Finance: In order to perform its functions effectively, it is necessary that every local government unit is provided with adequate finances. The local denizens are required to pay taxes forced by the concerned local authority.
=> Local autonomy: Its means the freedom of the local government to decide an act in the sphere of activities and functions allotted to them by the statutes under which they are created.
=> Local participation: The success or failure of the developmental plan at the local level depends upon the active participation of the local people for whom these plans are made. It is the local government which provides an opportunity to the local people to participate in the administration.
=> Local leadership: The people, who come under the purview of local government, especially those living in rural areas, are generally illiterate, inexperienced, non-professional and unaware of the functioning of the local bodies. Strong leadership, therefore, needs to be provided to those people.
=> Local accountability: Local governments are created to provide civic amenities to the people and are accountable at the local level. The residents of the local areas keep a watch on local authorities to ensure the effective performance of their functions.
Significance of Local Governments:
=> True democracy: The term “Democracy” refers to the system of government in the administration of which every adult citizen of the country enjoys some direct or indirect share. It Sustains democracy at the grass-root level.
=> Local participation: If democracy has to function properly, as many citizens as possible should be encouraged to participate in it at the local level.
=> Firm progress: In the long run, the progress achieved under such a democratic method is more firm and more solid than under a system which confines democracy to parliament and the state legislature.
=> It is a basic unit for political socialisation that’s why today it is much more significant in comparison to the other two levels of government.
=> Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru while inaugurating the first local self-government ministers conference in 1948, he said that “Local self-government is and must be the basis of any true system of democracy. We have got rather into the habit of thinking democracy at the top may not be a success unless you build on its foundation from below”.
By: ASRAF UDDIN AHMED ProfileResourcesReport error
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