Understanding Diversity

Diversity and Interdependence:(class6 polity)

  • Within a social group, diverse types of

activities are performed depending on

culture, skills, interests and education.

• To fulfill one’s needs people depend on


• With the onset of globalization, the concept of interdependence between diverse areas has got a boost of interdependence between diverse area.

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What is Government?

• The government plays an important role in our lives and does a number of things for the people.
Need for a Government:
• The government is required to maintain law and order in a country.
• Government makes provision for services like roads,electricity, waterways, railways, health and sanitation, etc.
• Government even protects against external aggression and is responsible for maintaining unity and integrity of the country.
Level of Government:
• Government in any country functions at several levels-central,
state and local.

Laws and the Government:-
• Laws are made by the government and as citizens of a country, people have to
abide by it.
• Government even has the power to enforce these laws.
• Courts have the power to give justice to the aggrieved party.
Types of Government:
• The laws are made by the go
vernment in a manner depending on the type of
government in the country.
• There are two types of governments: Democratic and Authoritarian.
• In a democratic government people have a right to choose their representatives.
For example, India, UK and USA.
• Authoritarian governments are where there is absolute obedience to the
authority. Examples of such type of governments are Saudi Arabia and Myanmar.

Key Elements of a Democratic Government

  • For long people have struggled for their rights.
  • It is generally perceived that democracy is the best system to give rights to people.
  • Ending of Racial Discrimination:
  • The continent of South Africa is very close to the Asian subcontinent.
  • For over nearly six decades in later part of the 20th century, the country was in The news for the practice of apartheid or racial discrimination.
  • Majority of the South African population was of blacks. The white settlers who settled here pursued a policy of ruthless suppression towards the black majority.
  • The discrimination was so apparent that everyone could see it.
  • After several decades of endless struggle, the policy of racial discrimination towards blacks came to an end in 1994 with Nelson Mandela being sworn in as a black President.


• For a successful democracy, it is essential for people to participate in its governance.

• This participation takes place through voting in elections.

• In India, general elections are held after every five years to keep a check on the government.

• Other ways of Participation:

In addition to election, there are several other ways of participation.

• Some such methods are dharnas, rallies, strikes, signature campaigns and other form of protests.

• Mass media like TV, newspapers, magazines and other agencies also play a major role in highliting public issues and moulding public opinion.

Panchayati Raj

  • Since ancient times, India has always possed a good system of local administration even at rural level.
  • This was rooted through the institution of Panchayati Raj at the rural level.Literally Panchayat means a committee of five people.
  • Panchayati Raj in India:
  • Panachayati Raj consists of three levels:
  • Gram Sabha at the village level.
  • Panchayat Samiti at the block level.
  • Zila Parishad at the district level.
  • Gram Sabha:Gram Sabha is a general body consisting of all the village voters residing in Village.
  • Every village Panchayat is divided into wards,i.e.smaller areas.Each ward elects a representative who is known as Ward Member or Panch.
  • All the members of the Gram Sabha also elect a Sarpanch who is the Panchyat President.The Ward Member or Panch,and the Sarpanch form the Gram Panchayat.The Gram Panchayat is elected for five years.
  • Gram Panchayat at Village Level:
  • Gram Panchayat is elected by Gram Sabha.The Gram Panchayat has a Secretary who is also the Secratary of the Gram Sabha. This person is not an elected person but appointed by the government. The Secretary is responsible for calling the meeting of the Gram Sabha and Gram Panchayat and keeping a record of the proceedings.
  • Gram Panchayat elects Sarpanch who presides over the meetings of the Panchayat.
  • Gram Panchayat performs public welfare activities, looks after the health and education and records death and birth in the village.
  • Works of Gram Panchayat:
  • The work of the Gram Panchayat has to be approved by the Gram Sabha.It is the place where all plans for the work of the Gram Panchayat are placed before the people.
  • (ii)The Gram Sabha prevents the Panchayat from doing wrong things and plays an important role in keeping an eye on the elected representatives.
  • The work of a Gram Panchayat includes construction and maintenance of water resources,roads,drainage,school buildings and other common property resources.
  • The Gram Panchayat also levys and collects local taxes,executes government schemes related to generating employment in the village
  • Panchayat Samiti at Block Level:
  • To examine the working of Gram Panchayat, there is provision of Panchayat Samiti at the block level.
  • The panchayat samiti has many gram panchayats under it . It supervises the working of panchayats in a block.
  • Zila Parishad at District Level:
  • Zila Parishad is the highest governing body under panchayati raj system .The Zila Parishad makes the developmental plans at the district level.
  • It coordinates the functioning of Panchayat Samitis and finanaces the gram panchayats and panchayat samiti for public welfare works.
  • The constitution of India provides guidelines within which each state of the country has its own laws with respect to Panchayats .The idea is to provide more and more space for people to participate and raise their voices.

Rural Administration

States consist of many districts which are divided into tehsils or talukas. A Tehsil is
a collection of small towns and villages.
• There are more than six lakh villages in India.
• To keep villages on track, it is necessary to maintain law and order in villages and
keep a record of its land and revenue.
• Since agriculture is the main occupation in Indian villages, it is important for the
government to maintain proper land records.
• To maintain law and order there are police stations
Area of Police Station:
• Every Police Station has an area that comes under its control.
• All the persons in that area can report cases or inform the police about any theft,
accident, injury, fight etc.
• It is the responsibility of the police of that station to enquire, to investigate and to
take action on the cases within its area.

The work at the Police Station:

• The person in charge of the police station is called Station House Officer or SHO.

• He registers the complaints brought by the people in written and also sends the constable to the complainee for investigation of the incident.

• Maintenance of Land Records

• The village Patwari keeps a record of the land areas owned by people. • A Patwari deals with measuring land and maintaining the land records of the village.

• The village Patwari is also responsible for the collection of land revenue from the people

• Patwari is also known as Lekhpal, Kanungo, and Village officer in different regions of India.

• The revenue department of the government watches the records of how farmers may change the crops grown on their fields. A senior member of the revenue department supervises the Patwari’s work.

Rural Administration: How does it Work Efficiently:

• The head of district administration is the District Collector and under it the Tehsildars work. Tehsildars are also known as the Revenue Officers.

• (ii)Tehsildar supervises the work of a Patwari and ensures proper maintenance of land records.

• (iii)The Tehsildar keeps a copy of land records , issues caste certificates and hears land disputes.

• (iv) They ensure that the farmers can easily obtain a copy of their record.

Hindu Succession Amendment Act 2005

• In earlier times only sons inherited their father’s property or the agricultural land. Till recently in some states, Hindu women did not get a share in the family’s agricultural land. After the death of the father, his property was equally divided among sons only, not daughters.

• According to the Hindu Succession Amendment Act 2005 daughters , are entitled to an equal share in their father’s property in agricultural land. The law is applied to whole country. This law will benefit a large number of women.

Urban Administration

  • There has been a rapid growth in the rate of urbanisation in recent times.
  • With the evolution of cities, evolved the problem of narrow roads, traffic jams, water and electricity shortage, crowded hospitals and lack of civic amenities.
  • A local body that takes care of cities and towns on issues like water supply , electricity , maintaince of roads is termed as muncipality .
  • A municipality is either in the form of a Municipal Committee or Municipal Council. The muncipality looks after a city having a small population between 20,000 – 10 lakhs whereas Muncipal corporation looks after the cities with large population with more than 10 lakh people.
  • The city is divided into different Wards and Ward Councillors get elected.
  • All citizens who are of 18 years and above can vote in the elections. The candidates who wish to contest elections must be 21 years or above.
  • The chief executive officer of the Municipal Corporation is called Municipal Commissioner.
  • The day-to-day work of Municipality is carried out by a number of committees.It is the committees for water,garbage collection,street lighting etc.that decide on the work to be done.
  • When the problems are within a ward then the people who live in the ward can contact their councillors.The ward councillors try to ensure that the particular demands of their wards are placed before the entire council.The councillors committees and the councillors decide on issues and the administrative staff implement these.
  • The commissioner and the administrative staff are appointed.Councillors are elected.
  • All the ward councillors meet and they make a budget and the money is spent accordingly.
  • The Municipalality provides for hospitals, public utilities, education, record of births and deaths and builds roads, bridges, etc.
  • The work in the city is divided into different departments, so there is water department, the garbage collection department, a department to look after gardens, another to look after roads.
  • In recent times in order to save money the commissioners of several municipalities across the country hired private contractors to collect and process garbage. This is called sub contracting
  • This means that the work that was earlier being done by government workers is now being done by a private company. The contract workers are paid less and their job is temporary.
  • Tax is a sum of money that people pay to the government for the services that government provides.

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