City to host BRICS Conference on Participatory Local Budgeting

Union Minister Shri Narendra Singh Tomar will inaugurate three-day conference on Thursday


Kochi, November 2:As part of an ongoing initiative to better synergise BRICS countries, cities and civic bodies through dialogue and cooperation, a three-day conference on ‘Participatory Local Budgeting (PLB)’, organised by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, will be held in the city from November 3 to 5.

 

Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister Rural Development, Drinking Water and Sanitation and Panchayati Raj, will inaugurate the conference held at the Taj Gateway on November 3. Shri Parsottambhai Rupala, Minister of State, Panchayati Raj, will preside over the function, which will see Shri Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, RajyaSabha MP for Maharashtra, deliver the keynote address.

 

Sri K. T Jaleel, Minister, Local Self Government Dept, Government of Kerala, Sri Surendra Goyal, Minister, Department of Panchayati Raj,Government of Rajasthan and Sri Gopal Bhargawa, Minister, Departments of Panchayati Raj, Rural Development, Social Justice and Disabled Welfare, Government of MadhyaPradesh will attend the inaugural function.

Representatives from BRICS countries -Brazil, Russia and China -are expected to participate.

 

PLB is practiced on a large-scale in Brazil. Both India and South Africaalso practice‘Participatory Local Planning’, although on a smaller scale. Russia and China have unique practices to promote participation in planning. There is therefore a rich depository of knowledge and experiences in BRICS countries.Each nation can learn from the legal frameworks, good practices, achievements and challenges of the other countries.

 

The conference will discuss the respective linkages between PLB and Decentralisation, Economic Development, Human Development, Social Development and Social Justice and Best Practices.

 

Although decentralisation and participatory budgeting has attractedthe attention of governments over the years, the process of decentralisation in most of the countries has been challenging, slow, sporadic and centrally driven. On the fiscal decentralisation front, local governments require more significant revenueraising powers along with control over the intergovernmental transfer mechanism.

 

Many of the UN sustainable development goals (SDGs) are directly linked with local development challenges that impede last mile delivery and affect their attainment.Coherent systems of local budgeting would be required to ensure optimal use of resources for outcome based local development planning and execution.

 

The various sessions will be chaired by Shri S.M. Vijayanand, Chief Secretary, Government of Kerala, Dr. W.R. Reddy, Director General, National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Hyderabad, Dr. J.K. Mohapatra, Chairman, Nabard Financial Services Ltd., Dr. S.S. Meenakshisundaram, Executive Vice Chairman of MYRADA, avoluntary organisationin the field of building people’s institutions for development, and Dr. R. Balasubramaniam, Founder and President, Swami Vivekanand Youth Movement, and Chairman, Grassroots Research and Advocacy Movement, Mysore.

 

Shri M Venkaiah Naidu, Union Minister of Urban Development, Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation and Information & Broadcasting, will be the chief guest at the valedictory function on November 5. Shri Narendra Singh Tomar will preside.

 

Shri A.K. Goyal, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Panchayati Raj, will present the conference report at the ceremony, which will see addresses from Shri Parsottambhai Rupala, Dr. Thomas Isaac, Finance Minister, Government of Kerala, Shri Jayant Mallaya, Finance Minister, Government of Madhya Pradesh, and Prof. K.V. Thomas, Ernakulam MP.

 

“There will also be field visits to study and understand the processes of participatory budgeting for local governance in Kerala’s local self-governments – from plan formulation, participatory processes and consultationto prioritisation,projectisation and approvals; the systems in place to institutionalise the local development plans; as well as to understand local development priorities and interventions,” informed Smt Sarada. Muraleedharan, joint secretary, Ministry of Panchayati Raj.

An exhibition on experience of Panchayati Raj in various States of India and Russia has also been organized as part of the conference.

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