Citizen Participation in Rural Development

Citizen Participation in Rural Development

By H R Chaturvedi and Subrata Kumar Mitra

Emergence of new nation-states, following liquidation of colonial rule after the Second World War has unleashed social forces which militate against centuries old traditions of subjugation and strive to build a social order based on freedom, equality and justice. This has meant a substantial change in the nature of relationships between society and the state. People who were subjects till recently, in the countries of Asia and Africa which recently got their independence, acquired the status of citizens and emerged as a new force asserting their power to influence their own destiny. A new institutional framework had to be developed to involve the people in the process of development. What is the nature and extent of involvement of the people, in India, particularly in the institutions of Community Development and Panchayati Raj? The present study attempts to examine the nature and extent of this participation in the process of development in two different regions of India.

A number of studies have been done to evaluate this process of participation. What distinguishes the present effort is its attempt to examine this process in a historical perspective which provides insights into the forces and factors that have shaped the course of development in different socio-cultural contexts.

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