Challenges in Local Budgeting and Planning: Field Realities in Rural Karnataka
Keywords:Panchayats, Local Governments, Local Planning.
AbstractLocal governments provide services that suit local tastes and preferences. The role of Panchayats (rural local governments in India) is to effectively provide services to the local people, wherein Panchayats are held responsible to manage finances effectively. Hence, the main objective of the paper is to study the budgeting and planning of rural local governments. How do they plan and manage finances to provide services effectively? Does participatory planning takes place or not and if yes to what extent it exists? These are the questions that this study tries to answer. By having a proper plan (otherwise will lead to wasteful expenditure) and consistent budget format, it will help Panchayats to compare better with other Panchayats, further helping in monitoring the plan and properly reviewing the budget details. Most importantly, participatory planning and budgeting will lead to accountability and transparency. Thus, efficient management of finances through participatory planning is important to yield a better outcome. The study is based on both primary and secondary data collected from four selected Gram Panchayats in two selected districts (namely, Ballari and Mandya districts) of Karnataka.
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