Advantages and Disadvantages of Local Self Government
The scope of Local Self Government is completely different from the other two levels of administration, viz, state government, and central government. The advantages and disadvantages of Local Self Government are discussed below.
The solution at the grass-root level: The local self-government solves the problems of rural people at the grass-root level. This strengthens democracy. The typical needs of a particular village are well attended by this system of government. The state government remains so much busy with multifarious functions that it seldom gets time to attend to the basic problems of different rural areas. The local government reduces the burden of responsibility of the state government to a large extent.
Perform various functions: The functions performed by the local self-governments are vital for making the life of the local people happier and prosperous. The various needs of rural areas such as construction and maintenance of roads, availability of water, construction of schools and education facilities, improvement in agriculture, etc. are taken care of by the local self-government.
Encourages local leadership: The problems of a particularly rural area can be best attended by the members of the Panchayat. The state or national government cannot do so because of so many reasons. Therefore, the problems of local people are solved by local leaders through the institution of local self-government. The real improvement in the social and economic conditions of people can happen only through intentional participation in the developmental plans and programs.
The training ground of citizenship: The local people are motivated to confront and solve their problems of their own. They become less dependent upon other external agencies. It creates confidence among the local leaders at the grass-root level. These leaders put their best foot forward. Many local leaders advance their careers to become state-level and national-level politicians.
New experiments: New infrastructural and developmental projects can be first implemented at the local level to gauge its impact on the system. Successful projects can later be introduced in other areas of local government.
The system of Local Self Government is not completely without any defect or drawback. The disadvantages of Local Self Government are discussed below:
- Regionalism: Sometimes it is criticized on the ground that it incites regionalism. The local leaders get so much entangled in the solution of their own problem that hardly they are able to see things beyond their nose and join the national mainstream.
- Fail to address National problems: Secondly, some critics remark that the leaders at the local level fail to appreciate the state or national problems in their real perspective because of the very difference in nature and scope.
The criticism of the local self-government is not entirely tenable. The frequent interaction of the local governments with that of the state or central governments helps them to understand the problems from a different angle. Thus, their consciousness level is increased to adjust to the higher-level political perception, which enables them to understand and appreciate the process of democratic decentralization.