National Panchayati Raj Day: Background, Themes, History, Structure & Goal

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India celebrates the 13th National Panchayati Raj Day on 24th April 2023 that day honours the Panchayat Raj System. The first National Panchayati Raj Day also called Panchayati Raj Diwas was celebrated in 2010 declared by the former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh under 73rd Constitutional Amendment Act. The 73rd Amendment Act came into effect on April 24, 1992.

73rd Constitutional Amendment Act, passed to build democracy at the grass roots level and was entrusted with the task of rural development at the country level.


Mahatma Gandhi’s vision was that India would have the reins of governance in the hands of the lowest class of citizens and rich, poor, high, low class people would be involved in the overall type of work of the country. Then they will be loyal to the country. Our constitution mandates decentralisation of power. Local self-government systems are prevalent in urban and rural areas of India.

Urban areas have notified area councils, municipalities and corporations. And In rural areas the current system of self-government is known as Panchayati Raj. The Panchayati Raj system of governance in our country is very old and it governs 6 lakh communities.

In the Middle Ages, India was ruled by a monarchy, but during the reigns of Chandragupta Mourya and Samrat Ashoka, there was a Panchayat system.

In 1959, under the Prime Ministership of India, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the introduction of the modern Panchayati Raj system was the launch for a revolutionary system of governance. Panchayati Raj was introduced to decentralise the governance of the country.

National Panchayati Raj Day Theme

Every year, the Prime Minister meets with members from Gram Panchayats and reviews their progress reports. In addition, a variety of village-level festivities, seminars, and other events are held.

The award ceremony, which will honour the outstanding work of panchayats across the country for their participation under the Panchayat Empowerment Accountability Incentive Scheme. On National Panchayati Raj Day, the Central government honours around 150+ Panchayati Raj institution.

The Main Goal Of National Panchayati Raj System

In 1957, recommendation of Balwant Rai Mehta Committee the three-tier Panchayati Raj system was adopted by India. The villagers, Schedule Caste, Schedule Tribal and illiterate people all got involved in the governance system of democracy.

Gram Panchayat is the mini parliament of India. In 1887, Lord Ripon introduced the local self-government system. Permanent people participated in governance and politics. There should be a close relationship between the public and the government. But after half a century, the dream of that day has remained.

Structure Of National Panchayati Raj System

Three tier panchayati raj system is prevalent in India. For example, Gram Panchayat, Panchayat Samiti and District Council.

Gram Panchayat’s Panchayati Raj system

A gram panchayat consists of one or more villages. Each village panchayat is divided into several wards. One civil servant from each ward was elected for five years through voting. He is called a ward member. Direct vote is given to the head Sarpanch of the Gram Panchayat along with the ward members and villagers.

Sarpanch is the head of the Gram Panchayat. He is very cooperative with the ward members and all types of Gram Panchayat works. At present there are seven lakh villages and two lakh village panchayats in India. A village panchayat is formed for 1500 people.

Panchayat Samiti’s Panchayati Raj System

Panchayat samiti is formed at the block level with a number of gram panchayats. While the official Chief Block Development Officer of the Panchayat Samiti is an elected representative or the Chairman and Vice-Chairman oversees the public development works in the block.Each village panchayat has one member called as Nominee.

District Counci’s Panchayat Raj System

The third and highest level of the Panchayati Raj system is the District Council. A district council comprising all the panchayat samitis under a district is divided into zones or mandals. One member from each zone is elected to the District Council by popular vote. One of them is elected as the District Council Chairman. Another is elected as vice president.

Various developmental works of the district are supervised by the Deputy Chairman of the District Council. Village PanchayatThere is an editor or secretary to manage the work. The income and expenditure calculation is done by him.

Awards Presented on the Day Of National Panchayati Raj Diwas

The Ministry of Panchayati Raj has been awarding the best performing Panchayats/States/UTs across the country in recognition of their good work.Awards are given under various categories namely

  • Deen Dayal Upadhyay Panchayat Sashakti karan Puraskar
  • Nanaji Deshmukh Rashtriya Gaurav Gram Sabha Puraskar
  • Child-friendly Gram Panchayat Award
  • Gram Panchayat Development Plan Award
  • e-Panchayat Puraskar (given to States/UTs only)

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