"The most stringent test of any exercise in democratic decentralisation is, of course, the actual powers and functions that are devolved to democratic institutions at the local level. We see that it is in only a handful of statesâ€”Kerala, Karnataka and West Bengal, that significant or complete devolution has been achievedâ€¦. and suggest that if women are adequately empowered through a political process, they would have enhanced capabilities for decision making, which, in turn, would be reflected in the quality of participation, impacting performance as well as their personal developmentâ Study on EWRs in panchayati raj institutions, 2008, Ministry of Panchayati Raj. The study of governance focused around .the manner in which power is exercised in the management of a countryâ€™s economic and social resources for developmentâ€™, â€”World Bank 1992. However, it was obvious that citizens had no role in determining the governance agenda through a democratic process (N G Jayal, 2003, Locating gender in the governance discourse, UNDP). Thus, such a definition was limited in its approach, and overlooked many aspects of the concept of â€˜good governanceâ€&trade
Dynamics of women participation in local governance has received intense scrutiny since the Constitutional Amendment in 1992. Many emphasised on training women technically; despite successes in creating able women leaders, violence towards women needs multi-layered investigation.
"The author is Professor of Development Studies, Commits Institute of Mass Communication, Bangalore. email@example.com"