Pressing Need for Decentralisation:
- In most states,
and definitely in AP, the governance is too centralized, and the
spirit of the Constitution, and often the letter are violated
- A district
in India is often larger than 80 nations of the world. There cannot
be effective delivery of services, or accountability, or citizen-centered
governance without effective and empowered local governments.
- Only when
the citizen can see the clear link between her vote and public
good can elections be meaningful. In the absence of such a link
in centralized governance, most people are increasingly tempted
to maximize their short-term gains by selling the vote for a price.
This is perpetuating a vicious cycle of corruption and misgovernance.
results have been accomplished in India only when local initiative
and leadership were given an opportunity.
- Though Constitution
has been amended over ten years ago (April 1993), local governments
continue to be overstructured and underpowered. As a result, the
disadvantaged sections have only titular representation without
Federation for the Empowerment of Local Governments (FELG)
This year, Lok
Satta initiated the movement to recognise and realize that "local
bodies" are in fact Local Governments with constitutionally
endowed powers and responsibilities. As a symbolic gesture, January
26th,2003 was celebrated as "Little Republics Day" across
the state. In Feburary, public personalites have been brought together
cutting across rural-urban divide, political affiliations and the
three-tiers of Panchayat governments. FELG was thus created after
a statewide campaign
the Empowerment of Local Governments aims to transform the Panchayats
(Village, Mandal and Zilla) and Municipalities (Nagar Palikas, Municipalities,
Municipal Corporations) into genuine Local Governments with clear
delineation of functions among them and to strive for the devolution
of functions, funds and functionaries through appropriate legislative
procedure. This organization is a non-partisan forum whose members
include representatives from major political parties in AP.
FELG will organize
awareness programmes for the representatives of local governments.
It will organize awareness campaigns among people about Local Governments.
- It will study
the problems of Local Governments pertaining to funds, functions,
functionaries and other issues, and after proper research, will
come up with detailed plans and organize appropriate programmes
for their implementation. It will take up printing of books, booklets,
pamphlets and other publicity programmes.
- It will organize
study tours for elected representatives to gain from experiences
of various organisations working in other states on problems of
Local Governments. It will work towards creation of a national
level platform for empowerment of Local Governments and conduct
joint programmes with organizations from different states.
- Through these
Local Governments, it will work for the implementation of the
following programmes. For people living in villages and cities,
it will strive for provision of basic services such as clean drinking
water, toilets, drainages, roads, street lamps, and an environment
conducive for dignified living. -- It will work towards easy accessibility
of quality school education, primary health services and provision
of better services for all. -- It will work for development of
agriculture, increasing employment opportunities, organizing training
programmes for skill enhancement. -- It will take up activities,
which will facilitate encourage sports, and cultural activities.
- To increase
the administrative efficiency of local governments, it will work
for necessary reforms to ensure greater transparency and accountability.
of FELG The following persons and organizations can join this
federation as members:
the current Zilla Parishad Chairpersons. Recently retired
Zilla Parishad Chairpersons
- All the
current Municipal Corporation Mayors. Recently retired Municipal
Level Municipal Chairpersons' Chambers.
Level Mandal Presidents' Chambers.
Presidents' Chambers in all districts.
Level Sarpanches' Chambers
Chambers in all districts.
level Mandal Parishad Members' Chambers.
Parishad Members' Chambers in all districts.
level Zilla Parishad Members' Chambers.
Parishad Members' Chambers in all districts.
- The state
level associations invited and admitted by the Federation
Panchayat members, Deputy Sarpanches, Municipality members.
The members selected by this federation.
former peoples' representatives who have rich experience
in Local Governments', people who have done detailed study
of Local Governments and experts selected by this Federation.
The membership of this body would be in consonance with
the spirit of the federation. The organizations, which
became members of this Federation, will participate in
the activities of this federation while retaining their
identity and autonomy.
AP's Largest Signature Campaign is now underway!
9th August (Quit India day) and ending with 2nd October (Gandhi
Jayanthi), LOK SATTA is reaching out to practically every village
in Andhra Pradesh to mobilize people for local government empowerment
in the form of signatures / written support. The goal is to obtain
the support of 10 million (1 crore) citizens. We hope to accomplish
at least 70 - 80% of the target. This will be the largest ever non-partisan
mass mobilization in any state on an issue that is not emotive,
and does not have caste or religious overtones.
There are three
specific and immediate objectives of
- To genuinely
transfer real powers of decision making to local governments in
respect of subjects listed in 11th and 12th Schedules.
- To transfer
50% of the state's tax revenues as untied funds to local governments.
- To create
instruments of accountability in local governments- like effective
right to information; Citizen's Charters for various services
with compensation to citizens for delays; and independent ombudsmen
to act against erring local governments and functionaries.
goals of the campaign are:
- To educate
the general public to mobilize demonstrable public support
- To weld local
government leaders into a cohesive, constructive force above party
- To make political
parties respond positively and achieve the objectives