Political Empowerment and Social Transformation

Monday, July 14, 2014: 3:45 PM
Room: 418
Oral Presentation
Sadhu AHLAWAT , Department of Sociology, Maharishi Dayanand University, Rohtak, India
Political Empowerment and Social Transformation; A study of the Hitherto excluded communities in Local Governance in India                                                                                                                                                                          

S. R. Ahlawat*

Local self government known as Panchayati Raj Institutions are vital for self-governance at the grass-root level and provide an ideal forum for decentralised planning and implementation for development work in accordance with people's needs and aspirations. With this assumption the government of India made 73rd Constitutional Amendment in December, 1992. An important radical measure underlying this legislation is regarding the reservation for women, scheduled castes (SCs) and scheduled tribes (STs) not only in membership but also in positions of office such as sarpanches/pradhan. It was expected that the new amendment would usher in an era of egalitarian society in place of the present unequal, stratified and hierarchical society. The main focus of this paper is to address the question of empowerment of the hitherto excluded caterogries, the scheduled castes and women. How the process of their inclusion in the local self government transformed their social position in society?

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------* S.R.Ahlawat is professor of Sociology, Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak, Haryana, India,124001