‘Panchayati Rajya Grama Swarajya’ Book by Wilfred D’souza & published by Bhandary Foundation Released

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‘Panchayati Rajya Grama Swarajya’ Book authored by Wilfred D’souza & published by Bhandary Foundation Released by M Veerappa Moily, Former Karnataka State Chief Minister and Former Central Minister on Sunday 28 November at Hotel Ocean Pearl, Mangaluru

Mangaluru: Quoting Mahatma Gandhi “Panchayati Raj represents true democracy realized. We would regard the humblest and the lowest Indian as being equally the ruler of India with the tallest in the land. My notion of democracy is that under it the weakest should have the same opportunity as the strongest. Suppose I have come by a fair amount of wealth either by way of legacy or by means of trade and industry, I must know that all that wealth does not belong to me. What belongs to me is the right to an honourable livelihood, no better than that enjoyed by millions of others. The rest of my wealth belongs to the community”- based on these thought-provoking words by M K Gandhi, renowned writer and journalist Wilfred D’souza, has aptly described Panchayati Raj in His book.

The book releasing ceremony of ‘Panchayati Rajya Grama Swarajya’ book written by Wilfred D’Souza and published by Bhandary Foundation, Mangaluru was held on Sunday, 28th Nov 2021 at Hotel Ocean Pearl, Mangaluru. M Verappa Moily, Former Chief Minister and Former Central Minister released the book, in the presence of Congress MLC candidate Manjunath Bhandary (Chairman of Sahyadri College), Congress leaders Harish Kumar and Mrs Shankunthala Shetty. Other Congress leaders of Dakshina Kannada & Udupi districts also graced the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Manjunath Bhandary said that when he had met Wilfred D’souza in Mysuru, and appreciating his reporting on Panchayati Raj had requested D’souza to write a book related to Panchayati Raj, and the book will be published by Bhandary Foundation, Mangaluru, and now it has become a reality. Over 10,000 copies have been printed, of which 6000 plus have been sent to the Panchayath raj board members in and around Dakshina Kannada.

Author Wilfred D’Souza speaking on the occasion said, “The 73rd Constitutional Amendment to decentralize power came into effect two decades back and now the time has come to review, brainstorm and find ways and means to strengthen the Panchayat Raj institutions. Karnataka was the 1st state in India to implement the Panchayat Raj system and became a model to other states. In 1983, the Panchayati Raj Act brought freedom to the local institutions in programmes, staff and fund transfers. I gratefully appreciate the contribution made by Dr Abdul Nazir Sab to the Panchayati Raj system, where I worked for Nazir Sab State Institute for Rural Development of Panchayati Raj, as Training and Development Consultant”.

In his address to the media, Former Union Minister Veerappa Moily complimenting the efforts put in by Wilfred D’Souza said, “Villages, taluka and district bodies were included under a new Panchayati Raj act. The new Panchayati Raj act incorporated the essential features of the 73rd Constitutional amendment and established elected bodies at three tiers — the village, taluka and district levels — for “greater participation of the people”. However, opposition politicians had contended that the act will take away powers given to the people by the 1983 Act Karnataka has been at the forefront of decentralisation since 1959, when the Mysore Village Panchayats and Local Boards Act was enacted. (For more of Moily’s speech watch the video below).

Mohammed Badagannur-former president of Panchayati Raj Puttur compered the programme, while Umanath Shetty, a Congress Party member proposed the vote of thanks.

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