The panchayat raj” is a South Asian political system mainly in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. It is the oldest system of local government in the Indian subcontinent. The word “panchayat” literally means “assembly” (ayat) of five (panch) wise anted during the British administration. Raj literally means “governance or government”. Mahatma Gandhi advocated Panchayati Raj, a decentralized form of Government where each village is responsible for its own affairs, as the foundation of India’s political system. The term for such a vision was Gram Swaraj (“village self-governance”).
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Website : http://panchayat.gov.in