Learner’s Submission: Case Study of Decentralization in Maharashtra, India


Decentralization is the most revolutionary development in India because behind it are all the forces when released will change the structure of the country – Jawaharlal Nehru, Former Indian Prime Minister. This was the quote said my Indian Prime Minister while he introduced the Indian Parliament with the 73rd and 74th amendment of Indian Constitution in 1960 which marked as a pioneer stage of decentralization in India. Today has over 2.5 lakhs Panchayats in which there are over 32 lakhs of Grass-root leaders elected by the people of that village and out of it 12 lakhs are women. It is a mile stone of India and an excellent vehicle to drive decentralization at a very basic level. The main reason of decentralization is to give chance to people to govern themselves because consistent progress is what matters. Power to rule should not lie upwards with central officer but downwards with local authorities. Quantity of GDP generated is less important that quality of GDP.

Decentralization in Maharashtra started in 1961 and today there are 28,000 Gram panchayats, 350 Panchayat Samitis and 33 Zilla Parishads. But instead of this there were quarrels continuously going on in Maharashtra which we resulting in social tensions and hence the police complaints were increasing at a rapid pace ultimately creating a huge pile of court cases; Considering the huge pendency of cases in various Courts and the inevitable delays in delivering judgments, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is the need of the hour. In fact this was the reason for the formation of Loknyayalas and Fast Track Courts. Maharashtra Government made a plan called as Dispute-free village scheme also called as (Tanta Mukti Gaon Mohim).According to this Plan, a village with most number of points gained after solving the cases at village level were awarded with cash prizes hence disputes taking place within families or due to small reasons were not introduced in court and golden mean was found out by the Gram Panchayat (Village Authorities) only. It reduced the Police work to a great extent. The Maharashtra model is likely to be replicated in other developing countries, where logistics and infrastructure of the judicial machinery were weak, Mr. Dighavkar said. He will also spend time with social scientists, reformers and peace makers in various universities and share the model and his experiences with them. Speaking of the achievements of the scheme, he cited figures in Pune district where 790 out of 1,134 villages have become ‘dispute-free’ in the last two and a half years and hence the district received Rs. 19,31,000,00 ($4.4 million), as the prize money from the State government. Since October 2009, 36,294 conflicts at the village-level were resolved and now, 28,084 cases were awaiting resolution, he said.

The salient features of this mission are:

1. Formation of Tanta Mukt Samities at each and every village in the state.
2. Identification of existing disputes, classifying them into criminal, civil, revenue and noting

3. Them down in a register maintained by the Samitis.
4. Preventive schemes and measures to ensure that disputes do not occur.
5. Resolution of existing and new disputes in a democratic, fair and participative manner.

Decentralization is the backbone of democracy because it really proves the meaning of democracy- For the people; by the people.” – Ameya S. Kulkarni – Maharashtra, India

Learner’s Submission: Social Media Channels in India


“1950s marked the emergence of a new global communication way called as Internet and the first message to be sent by using Internet was from UCLA by Prof.Leonard Kleinrock. Though it was till 1997 the modern kind of social media wasn’t involved and the team who named the modern social media network as ‘Six Degrees’ did it and emerged the new face of social media. As rightly said by JP Rangaswami “Social media offer the government a much better picture of what the citizen looks like. There is a better engagement process between the citizen and government. Social media can create a level of interaction with consultations that just wasn’t possible before.” Social media can also be used for harvesting collective ingenuity of the public in much more efficient and paperless way. Government of India is making tremendous efforts in conveying messages to its citizens with the help of social media sites like Twitter and Facebook. Ministry of Finance Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ministry-of-Finance-Government-of-India/172154416195975 is able to connect with the citizens of India and is also very much useful in marking the foundation of E-Governance. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting under Government of India is the first Ministry to create its Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/inbministry and Twitter handle @MIB_India to get connected with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Constant updates relating to many departments of the Government of India are constantly updated on Facebook and tweeted in Twitter so as to let the Citizens of India know the events happening in their country. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting recently undertook a Digital Internship Program by which they were connecting youths all over India to get connected with various. Many videos regarding India’s progress and cultural diversity and videos of recent events are uploaded on the You Tube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/INBMINISTRY . Currently Ministry of Information and Broadcast is the only ministry to use social media at such a larger prospect. During the conversion of signals from Analog to Digital, Government of India used the tool of social media to efficiently spread the message of how Digital technology is going to be proved very useful in near future through its Facebook page www.facebook.com/DigitalIndiaMIB. And it proved to be quite useful for the Government to eradicate all the doubts and confusions which the Cable Operators all over India were having, only due to efficient use of social media.

The Prime Minister of India Dr.Manmohan Singh is also one of the most followed person on Facebook and the page of Dr.Manmohan Singh is https://www.facebook.com/dr.manmohansingh and he has a follower database of around 3,70,000 and that of Gujarat Chief Minister 25,00,000 likes and his Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/narendramodi and he is the first chief minister of any state who is more popular than  the Prime Minster of the Nation. Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat is having heavy follower number and he has1.95 million followers on Twitter and the handle used is @narendramodi  . The Prime Minster of India is widely recognized as Man of Economic Reforms and all the events where Prime Minister of India is going to take part is updated on the Facebook page and also on Twitter. This allow people to hear the speeches given by him in various events and also to read the articles which are published by the Prime Minister’s Office also the events are continuously updated on his twitter handle named as @PMOIndia.

The Planning Commission of  India has also created their won Facebook Page as https://www.facebook.com/PlanComIndia and many activities regarding the activities or publications of the planning commission are updated on the Facebook page. They also invite comments and suggestions regarding India’s future developmental plans and people are overwhelmingly respond to the questions or polls put forth by the planning Commission. Tourism Ministry has created a brand for promoting domestic as well as international tourist to visit different parts of India and the name of the brand is “Incredible India”. The Facebook page which is devoted to promote the brand is https://www.facebook.com/India.IncredibleIndia and it is also continuously updated by uploading images of various scenic beauties of nature and delicious food preparations from all over India like Pani Puri from Bhopal, Rosgulla from Kolkatta, Vada-Pav from Mumbai and Dhokla from Gujarat. For having strong international recognition you need to have strong ties with other nations and that work is carried out by Ministry of External Affairs under rule of Mr. Salman Khurshid who is the current Minster of External Affairs. The Facebook page for Ministry of external affairs is https://www.facebook.com/MEAINDIA . India’s bilateral relations are put forth in front of all the citizens of the world by using this Facebook page. This page also serves as major source of information for students studying in the field of Political Science and International relations in eminent Indian Universities like South Asian University, Jawaharlal Nehru University or Tilak Maharashtra University.

. Even if we talk about Facebook it is estimated that over 10 Crore Indians have opened their Facebook account and are active on it. But we look at the figures of followers even to the Prime Minister of India it’s just 0.37 Million which is way to less than that of Indians having their account on Facebook.” – Ameya S. Kulkarni – Maharashtra, India

Learner’s Submission: Online Public Services in India


“Public Service means any service provided by the specific government either directly or through any service provider, which includes, inter alia, the receipt of forms and applications, issue or grant of any license, permits, certification, sanction and approval and the receipt or payment of money by whether name called in a particular manner.

Electronic/Internet Service Delivery means the delivery of services through electronic mode including inter alia, the receipt of forms and applications, issue or grant of any license, permits, certification, sanction and approval and the receipt or payment of money.

The government of India provided several public services to Citizens, Business Community and also to the government body. India is developing its infrastructure for e-governance in several departments of Central Government as well as State Government by providing online services. Few of them, Services which I used are as follows:

  • Indian Railways Online Services: Indian Railways is the most important public transport department. Which provide many online service among them I always used online reservation service. Indian railway provides their services mainly through 2 websites, http//:www.indianrail.gov.in/ and http//:www.irctc.co.in/. Through these websites we can get information’s about Trains between Stations, PNR Status, Seat Availability, and Fare Inquiry by using internet.

http//:www.indianrail.gov.in/ is mainly provides information’s to make a travel plan. It proved beneficial to common public.

Before the introduction of these websites online services, getting information’s was very difficult for public, public have to wait for long hours to get information’s from limited information centers. And today, it can be done by few mouse clicks.


Online Reservation can be done by http//:www.irctc.co.in/. Services offered in the websites are booking of E-Ticket/Season Ticket/ I-Ticket; and Cancelling E-Ticket/I-Ticket, Compatible browser, and Tatkal Reservation can be done through it. It is very helpful; we can book ticket from home, internet café, and mobile SMS through Register with http//:www.irctc.co.in and paid money online by using credit card, debit card or net banking and new innovation of services by Indian Railway is SMS service for taking the Reservation. Before the introduction of these services, Booking or Cancellation of Ticket was very difficult. People were compelled to stand in lines at reservation counter for several hours. Lack of information used to make situations worst. And nowadays these services are very productive and are proved very effective and helpful to common people.

  •  Right to Information (RTI):

The Government of India, has Passed a Act in Parliament for Government department, any common people can ask information under Right to Information Act. Through online http//:www.rtionline.gov.in/.  It is really a great step towards Right to Information for a common people. This service, I always used for taking the information’s.

  •  Income Tax Return e-Filling:

Today Income Tax Return can be filled online by using http//:incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/. This facility is really beneficial for citizen who wants to file their income tax return; this website gives opportunity to fill income tax return from any where you are you can use it.

  • Passport Seva: 

http//:passportindia.gov.in/ through this passport seva portal we can apply online application for Passport. Ministry of External Affairs is trying to make passport application process is easier for common citizens of India. However there are many things should be workout to make this process perfectly online.” – Mukesh Kumar – Jharkhand, India

Learner’s Submission: Online Public Services in India


“I have used several public services in India, online. India is developing its infrastructure for e- governance. Several departments of both Central Government as well as the state governments are providing online services to the Citizen as well as to the business community.  Some of those services I used are:

1)      Online Services of Indian Railways: Indian Railways is the most important public transport department. Their online services are commonly used by me.  They are providing those mainly services through 2 websites, http://www.indianrail.gov.in/ and https://irctc.co.in/.

Through those websites we can get information regarding PNR Status, Train between Stations, Seat Availability, Fare Enquiry and we can do Internet Reservation.  www.indianrail.gov.in mainly provides information that is essential in planning the travail. It proved very beneficial for common people. When those services were not introduced, getting information’s were very difficult, we may have to wait for hours in those limited information centers. Today, it can be done by few mouse clicks.

Online Reservations can be done by https://irctc.co.in/. Booking E-Ticket, Booking Season Ticket, Booking I-Ticket, Canceling E-Ticket, Canceling I-Ticket, Compatible Browser, and Tatkal Booking can be done through it. It is very helpful. We can book ticket from home through online by using credit card, debit card or net banking. Previous day’s book ticket or Canceling was very difficult job. We had to stand in lines at reservation counters for hours. Shortage of information used to made situations worst. This service proved very effective and helpful for common people.

2)      MCA21: It is another online public service generally used by me. It the online service provided by Ministry of Corporate Affairs. It is providing various services to incorporated entities. A company can be registered and their statuary requirements can be managed by it. Those processes are almost paperless. Digital signatures provided by some authorized agencies are important for such purposes, i.e. efiling. It is reducing unnecessary harassment due to travel, waiting, miscommunications. The facilities can be avail through the website http://www.mca.gov.in/MCA21/. Some important services are : Track Transaction Status, Companies/LLPs in which a person is/was a director/Designated Partner, Request for document of a company that is not available in the electronic repository, Transfer Deed, View Public Documents, Get Certified Copies, Track Complaint Status, Track Payments Status, Find CIN/GLN/LLPIN, Enquire Fee, Prescrutiny, Resubmission, Find Name Approval Reference Number, Enquire DIN Approval Status, View Index Of Charges, View Company/LLP Master Data, Apply For Company Name Renewal, Link Neft Payment, Check Company or LLP Name, Verify Payment, Migrated LLP Partner Details, View form11 screen srn details, View form3 screen srn details, Pay Fees, etc. Ministry of Corporate Affairs is converting their services almost absolute online.

3)      Income tax: Today Income tax can be filed online through https://incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/. It is very beneficial.

4)      RTI: Today we can ask to any department for any information’s under Right to Information Act online through http://www.rtionline.gov.in/. It is great step for realization of right to information. It is commonly used by me.

5)      Passport Seva: Through Passport seva portal i.e. www.passportindia.gov.in, Ministry of External Affairs is trying to passport application process easier for common citizen. However there are many things is needed to be done to make that process perfectly online.

Ministry of Home affairs of Central government and State Governments, judiciary is required to upgrade them and make their services online so that they will become seal accessible to the common people.” – Rupak Ghosh – West Bengal, India

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