Subject to the provisions of the constitution, the legislature of state may, by law endow the Panchayats with such powers and authority as may be necessary to enable them to function as institution of self government and such law may contain provisions for the devolution of powers and responsibilities upon Panchayats at the appropriate level, subject to such conditions as may be specified therein, with respect to:

  1. the preparation of plans for economic development and social justice; and
  2. The implementation of schemes for economic development and social justice as may be entrusted to them including those in relation to the matters listed in the Eleventh (XI) Schedule.

Eleventh schedule article 243 G

  1. agriculture, including agricultural extension
  2. land improvement, implementation of land reforms, land consolidation and soil conservation
  3. minor irrigation, water management and watershed development
  4. animal husbandry, dairying and poultry
  5. fisheries
  6. social forestry and farm forestry
  7. minor forest produce
  8. small scale industries, including food processing industries
  9. khadi, village and cottage industries
  10. rural housing
  11. drinking water
  12. fuel and fodder
  13. roads, culverts bridges, ferries waterways and other means of communication
  14. rural electrification including distribution of electricity
  15. non-conventional energy sources
  16. poverty alleviation programme
  17. education, including primary and secondary schools
  18. technical training and vocational education
  19. adult and non- formal education
  20. libraries
  21. cultural activities
  22. markets and fairs
  23. health and sanitation, including hospitals, primary health centres (PHC) and dispensaries
  24. family welfare
  25. women and child development
  26. social welfare, including welfare of the handicapped and mentally retarded
  27. welfare of the weaker sections, and in particular, of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes
  28. Public Distribution System (PDS)
  29. Maintenance of community assets.

The inherent potential of democratization in the decentralized federal system is the proper empowerment of people at the grassroots level. The 73rd amendment is a legal recognition to the three-tier system of governance with Panchayat Raj Institutions (PRIs) at the district, intermediary, and village levels and a three tier structure of the Panchayats, except in those states whose population is less than 20 lakhs. For them a two-tier system is prescribed. Most of the states modified their acts and went for Panchayat elections following the Seventy Third Amendment. The Eleventh Schedule does not clearly describe the powers and function of different tiers of a Panchayat. In accordance to the amendment all states have amended their respective Panchayati Raj Acts and enlisted the functions assigned to different levels of the respective PRIs.

Some of the states have identified specific functions for their different tiers at village, block and district level as below:


All most all the states Village level 1. preparation of annual plans
2. preparation of annual budget
3. mobilizing relief for natural calamities
4. removal of encroachment on public properties
5. organizing voluntary labour and contribution for community works
6. maintenance of statistics of villages
7. functions entrusted by Panchayat Samiti, Zilla Panchayat, State or Central government
  Block level 1. general administrative functions
2. developmental and social functions
3. maintenance functions
Many states Village and block level Developmental activities include: Agriculture social forestry, animal husbandry, drinking water, rural housing, education, social welfare, small scale industries
Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, West Bengal Village level General administrative functionsVillage defence, information and Publicity Constitution of Nyaya Panchayats
Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan Village level Regulation of liquor shops
Gujrat, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra Village level Regulation and construction of hoses
Andhra Pradesh, Gujrat, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal Village level Protection and repair of buildings and properties
Andhra Pradesh Village level Construction of jhuggies
Andhra Pradesh, Gujrat, Maharashtra, West Bengal Village level Destruction of stray animals
Gujrat Block level Social education, village defence corps, defence
Gujrat and Maharashtra Block level Publicity and information
Gujrat, Maharashtra, and Rajasthan Block level Statistics
Karnatka, Maharashtra, Rajasthan Block level Social reform
Gujrat and West Bengal Block level Rural credit
Gujrat, West Bengal, Maharashtra District level Technical advisory role
Gujrat and West Bengal District level Relief measures
Maharashtra District level Publicity
Gujrat District level Development of village sites
West Bengal District level Rural credit
Maharashtra District level Maintenance of dharamshalas public functions propagation of gramdan and bhoodan
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