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Institutionalising Citizen Participaion in Urban Governance

Ramesh Ramanathan ()

Working Papers from eSocialSciences

Abstract: The twin concepts of a federal arrangement – a structure for a multi-tiered form of government with clearly defined roles and responsibilities, as well as active citizenship are like the two strands of the DNA of good public governance. And we are in the early evolutionary stages of both in India. Against the backdrop of a state that has not provided enough toe-holds for the urban resident to assert his identity as a citizen, grassroot work continues to show that people do not stay still, they react to this reality. In Bangalore, over the past few years, an attempt has been made to right this ship of decentralised governance and straighten the inequity to the urban voter, through a citizen-led initiative for participatory democracy called Janaagraha (meaning Janaagraha, or the moral force of the people). Evidence suggests that while the urban resident cares, and wants to take part, the state has not only not provided her with any toe-hold to engage with her identity as a “citizen†, but actively thwarts this desire.

Keywords: federal government; Bangalore; Karntaka; governance; decentralisation; citizen-led initiatives; Janaagraha; urban voter; people's movements; Political Science; Sociology (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2006-01
Note: Conference Papers
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