There is a conventional classification of fiscal, political and administrative decentralization using which the three-volume study conducted by the World Bank on Indian Decentralisation ranks
India the first in terms of Political decentralisation and last in terms of Administrative decentralization. Our Indian statutes and other Union territories are willing to accept the panchayat
system and give them recognition to hold elections. They also respect their stipulations with regard to reservations for Scheduled Castes (SCs), Scheduled Tribes (STs) and women. However, they are
not ready to give them sufficient administrative control without which efficient functioning is at stake.
Again, although most States have established SECs, whose primary responsibilities are to organise and oversee Panchayat elections,
and to prepare the electoral rolls, many have been unwilling to relinquish powers of delimitation – i.e. the power to define electoral constituencies. There is a lack of proper demarcation and clarity of functions among the panchayats and the other levels of government, and the states also have the rights to either assign o if necessary, to withdraw functions given to the panchayats. This again shows the supremacy of state upon the so-called autonomous panchayat governance.
A detailed insight into article 40 and articles 43 to 243O shows that the makers of our constitution want the village panchayats to be responsible for its own affairs as well as to act as a solid foundation for political democracy of the country. For encouraging development in the rural parts of the country, it is necessary to mobilize the resources in the hands of people and thus accelerate the participation of them in the decision making the process that has an effect on their daily living. The pragmatic philosophy of miniaturized participative democracy, where every man matters, is the cornerstone of developmental dynamics. The higher level policy makers are also well aware that the empowerment goals at Panchayat level have not been fully achieved but with some procedural, legislative and most importantly attitudinal changes, it is not far from being achieved. Some states have taken measures towards meeting the basic requirements of devolution as specified in the Constitution, other states have taken off to the next level in terms of promoting good governance, efficient service delivery, decentralised democracy, transparency, accountability and connectivity. Some of the recent initiatives as visible from the efforts of the state governments are presented for the benefit of other states.