The present village Panchayat is a kind of local self-Government. The system has three objects. One is to make the villagers better habituated with the exercise of franchise.The second is to relieve the Government from the details of the local affairs. The third is to let the people manage their own affairs.
Old system of the Village Panchayat and it decay:
In the pretty old time there were village Panchayats in India. They were very powerful organizations. They were virtually ruling over the village according to the customary laws. During the Mughal period the village Panchayats remained unaffected. Because the Mughal Emperors and the Mughal Chiefs were satisfied with the collection of revenue and taxes. They did not trouble about the local administration. But during the British period the Indian village Panchayats were completely inactive and runied. Because the British administration was very strong and was penetrating into every nook and corner of the country. The British Government founded the system of union-president to know the view of the public. But the union presidents played into the hands of the thana officers. Hence the old panchayat system was completely ruined.
The present system of village Panchayat:
The present system of village Panchayat has been introduced by the Government of India. It is according to the Directory Principles of the Indian Constitution. Accordingly, a Panchayat organized for every group of villages. This Panchayat consists of a President or Sarpanch, Vice-President or Naib-Sarpanch and some members. The Sarpanch is directly elected by the voters. The Government has assigned certain local taxes to Panchayat for its maintenance. The Government bears the deficit. The Government does many of its welfare schemes through the village Panchayats. The Government is encouraging the Panchayats to work better. The best Panchayat is awarded a rich cash-prize to found an industry in the Panchayat area. These village Panchayat elect some Panchayat Committee. They are connected with adalat Panch and the Zilla Parishad. The Village Panchayats are elected once in every three years.
The Panchayat is to look after the village and its welfare. It works out the Government welfare schemes. It collects taxes from the villagers. The village Panchayat has a Secretary to help the Panchayat in its work. The Secretary is a Government servant. The Panchayat manages some village institution.
The system of Village Panchayat is a good thing. It is an elected body. The villagers can vote out the Panchayat office-bearers if they do not work satisfactorily. But the villagers should co-operate with the Panchayat in working out all their welfare programmes.