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The problem of local government reform in rural Bangladesh : the failure of Swanirvar Gram Sarkar Huque, Ahmed Shafiqul 1984

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THE PROBLEM OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT REFORM IN RURAL BANGLADESH: THE FAILURE OF SWANIRVAR GRAM SARKAR by AHMED SHAFIQUL  HUQUE  M.A.,  University  Of M a n i t o b a ,  M.A.,  University  Of D a c c a ,  A THESIS SUBMITTED  Canada,  1979  Bangladesh,  IN PARTIAL  FULFILMENT  THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF  PHILOSOPHY in  THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES D e p a r t m e n t Of P o l i t i c a l  We a c c e p t to  this  the  thesis  required  Science  as c o n f o r m i n g standard  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA April  ©  1984  Ahmed S h a f i q u l  1975  Huque,  1984  OF  In p r e s e n t i n g  t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of  requirements f o r an advanced degree a t the  the  University  o f B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree t h a t the L i b r a r y s h a l l make it  f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r reference  and  study.  I further  agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e copying o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may  be  department o r by h i s o r her  granted by  the head o f  representatives.  my  It i s  understood t h a t copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l gain  s h a l l not be  allowed w i t h o u t my  permission.  Department o f  P o l i t i c a l Science  The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 Date  June 4,  1984  Columbia  written  i i  Abstract S i n c e W o r l d War reform  local  among o t h e r living  things,  conditions  various the  at in  the  have n e v e r  schemes t o  to  in  brought that  This  its  order  Bangladesh,  it  in  reforms is  systems  in t h e i r  political  circumstances  of  the  Bangladesh  indicates  indigenous,  to  consider  of  its  in of  to a c t u a l l y in  control  Moreover,  the  existing  level, local  rural  elites,  government  at  the  a  which  factors  failure  the  the  introduced,  and  localities.  A  government  both  foreign  decentralize  who have been i n c o n t r o l to  in and  power.  to  intermediate  try  local  contexts,  s u c h a way as  institutions,  of like  existing  local  rulers,  institutions  and u n i o n )  is  countries  reforms are  They have d e s i g n e d l o c a l centre.  the  chronic  historical  evolution  have been r e l u c t a n t  by t h e  government") Rahman,  and  of  attempt,  the motives  developing  particular  all  these  initiation  Ziaur  generally  under w h i c h  that  Most of  village of  by  bringing  The l a t e s t  existence,  the in  historical  and  the  analyzes  socio-economic c o n d i t i o n s p r e v a i l i n g  review  improving  1982.  necessary  government  despite  government  understand  government  affairs,  government.  dissertation  termination to  local  government.  into  to  They were a i m e d ,  production,  ("self-reliant  1980 by the  attempts  encouraging p a r t i c i p a t i o n  been a t t a i n e d  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  In local  in  food  the c e n t r a l  reform l o c a l  point.  led to  of  several  Bangladesh.  villages,  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  case  rural  been  increasing  closer  scheme l a u n c h e d  the  in  have  i n t h e management  villages  objectives  there  government  the v i l l a g e r s the  II,  ensure  (district of  the  impede  the  decentralization local  of  power  institutions  such  and p u t  up o b s t a c l e s  another  explanation  Even  if  the  for  achieved  uniform l e v e l s  study  of  Bangladesh. political in  previous  observation.  politics  these  the  failure  In factors  of  use  affecting  They  local  government  decentralize it,  since  they  local  examined  is  reforms.  power,  the  have  not  historical  evidence,  documents,  and  in-depth i n v e s t i g a t i o n  historical government  for  yet  mobilization. of  the  new  threats,  There  representing different  to  view  Gram S a r k a r s as  government  p r o v i d e s an  addition  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r ,  receive  makes  villages  are  to  political  level.  operation.  in  decides  research, It  three  villages  their  be p r e p a r e d t o  dissertation of  as S w a n i r v a r  government  may not  findings  the v i l l a g e  to prevent  villages  This  to  the field  of  regions  the of  and  national  reform,  conditions  evidence  w i t h few e x c e p t i o n s , was  explaining  why  so u n s u c c e s s f u l .  i v  T a b l e of  Contents  Abstract L i s t of Maps Acknowledgement Chapter  ii vii viii  I  THE PROBLEMS OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT REFORM  1  PROBLEMS IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT  1  LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN A DEVELOPMENTAL CONTEXT 5 LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN BANGLADESH: THE GAP IN OUR KNOWLEDGE 13 FAILURE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT REFORMS: HYPOTHESIS  A WORKING  15  PURPOSE OF PRESENT STUDY  19  THE METHOD  21  OUTLINE OF THE STUDY  23  Chapter II LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN  BANGLADESH: THE LEGACY OF COLONIAL  RULE 28  THE COUNTRY TRADITIONAL VILLAGE  30 PATTERN OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT  SOCIETY  32  UNDER MUGHAL RULE  35  INNOVATION UNDER BRITISH COLONIAL RULE  37  REFORMS  48  UNDER PAKISTANI RULE  Chapter III LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN BANGLADESH: THE GENESIS OF GRAM SARKAR LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND THE POLITICAL RURAL DEVELOPMENT:  SCENE,  1971-1975  STRATEGIES AND RESULTS  ...63 69  THE SWANIRVAR MOVEMENT LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND THE POLITICAL  62  72 SCENE,  1975-80  81  0  C h a p t e r IV GRAM SARKAR IN THE POLITICAL STRUCTURES AND FUNCTIONS  V  CONTEXT:  LEGISLATION,  91  THE EMERGENCE OF ZIA  91  THE BANGLADESH NATIONALIST PARTY  95  THE ESTABLISHMENT OF SWANIRVAR  GRAM SARKAR  102  PARLIAMENTARY APPROVAL AND LEGISLATION  105  SOME OBSERVATIONS  110  Chapter V ISOLATION AND INACTION: GRAM SARKAR IN MANTALA,  MYMENSINGH 121  THE V I L L A G E  121,  TRADITION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT  128  SWANIRVAR  129  GRAM SARKAR  AN OVERVIEW C h a p t e r VI NEW LEADERSHIP COMILLA  136 AND DOMINATION: GRAM SARKAR IN  COLIPUR,  144  THE V I L L A G E  1 44  TRADITION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT  150  SWANIRVAR  155  GRAM SARKAR  AN OVERVIEW Chapter  1 63  VII  FACTIONALISM AND VILLAGE LEADERSHIP: RAINAGAR, RAJSHAHI  GRAM SARKAR  IN  170  THE V I L L A G E  171  TRADITION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT  177  SWANIRVAR  178  GRAM SARKAR  AN OVERVIEW Chapter  185  VIII  GRAM SARKAR IN PRACTICE: A COMPARATIVE OVERVIEW HISTORY  193 194  vi  POLITICS AND ECONOMY IN THE VILLAGE LOCAL GOVERNMENT: STRUCTURE,  SOCIETIES  FUNCTIONS,  PERSONNEL  197 204  STRUCTURE  205  FUNCTIONS  207  PERSONNEL  211  RELATIONS  WITH THE UNION PARI SHAD AND THE GOVERNMENT .217  AN OVERVIEW Chapter  225  IX  CONCLUSIONS BIBLIOGRAPHY  233 '.  246  vii  List  MAP  1.  BANGLADESH:  MAP  2.  MYMENSINGH  MAP  3.  COMILLA  MAP  4.  R A J S HAH I  of  Maps  ADMINISTRATIVE DISTRICT  DISTRICT DISTRICT  DISTRICTS  2 9a 121a 14 4 a 1.7 0 a  viii  Acknowledgement  I  am  grateful  to  several  people.  supervisor,  has been e x t r e m e l y  guidance at  all  Stephen  Milne  stages  of  patient  of  the  constructive  feedback  presentation.  I  John Wood, my  and  provided  preparing this  has c o n t r i b u t e d t o  organization  Dr.  thesis. and  the  Dr.  Paul  helped  am i n d e b t e d t o  in  the  invaluable  dissertation.  clarification  of  Tennant  has  improving  the  members  of  thesis  my  Professor ideas  and  offered style  of  supervisory  committee. I  must  University support Carty,  thank  of  successive  arranging  I for  the  study.  Graduate  financial  encouragement. me l e a v e  Department  B r i t i s h Columbia, for  to complete as  the  Dr.  am g r a t e f u l  expertise  the  I  Science,  been  financial and D r .  Ken  helpful  in  providing  constant  Chittagong, Bangladesh, financial  t o Golam Mohammad and  in R a j s h a h i .  of  Humayun data  in  have t a k e n  advantage Muller  of  granted  support. Kabir  the  s u g g e s t i o n s and i n  i n d r a w i n g maps. P e t u l a  Bhuiya  field.  Aali  establishing Asad  has a s s i s t e d  Mamun's in  typing  manuscript. Finally,  for  and  a s s i s t i n g me w i t h t h e c o l l e c t i o n  contacts  Johnston  have  f r o m my j o b and p r o v i d e d p a r t i a l  Rehman has h e l p e d w i t h e d i t o r i a l  the  Richard  Directors,  of  Political  p r o v i d i n g me w i t h  assistance  The U n i v e r s i t y  of  I  e x p r e s s my g r a t i t u d e  p r o v i d i n g support collection  of  i n p e r i o d s of data  in the  t o my w i f e , difficulty  villages  of  Khaleda  Yasmin,  and h e l p i n g Bangladesh.  with I  also  ix  w i s h t o thank daughter,  my  Shineen  and amusement.  mother Anqa,  and  record  my  appreciation  who has been a s o u r c e of  for  my  constant  joy  1  I. PROBLEMS IN In  THE PROBLEMS OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT REFORM LOCAL GOVERNMENT  most  new  states,  innumerable problems. experience that  they  local  of  These  many  national  for  in  religion  political along  parties  with  resources,  the  in  of  as  in  rulers  assumed  developing scarcity  general  Harold Alderfer local  half-hearted  tendencies  problems,  and  financial in  about  has p o i n t e d out  governments  were  while the over  native  are  historical  the  that  either colonial centre.  have p e r s i s t e d even a f t e r  h a v e become i n d e p e n d e n t and  local  such changes  There are  upon m a i n t a i n i n g c o n t r o l  centralist  central  made t o b r i n g  attention  not  rational  new  reforms  demands and n e e d s ,  in developing c o u n t r i e s .  received  are  in  Traditional  1  Such  2  of m a t e r i a l  are  such f a i l u r e s .  breakdown  by t h e  nations.  The  politicians  3  these have  power.  The  case  Bangladesh pulled  services  Although conscious attempts  concentrated  countries  local  to  or  such  a  power  with  evidence  from  prevails."  e x t e n s i o n of  local  ample  o r g a n i z a t i o n work a g a i n s t  the pre-independence p e r i o d ,  neglected  But  confusion  present  response to  for  so t h a t  beset  sources.  provide  deterrents  seldom s u c c e s s f u l causes  the  ever  act  government. changes  and t h e  are  various  nations  bureaucracy  and s o c i a l  bureaucratization  from  long periods  r e n d e r e d and a s e m i - a n a r c h i c values  governments  stem  developing  "have s u f f e r e d  and  local  out  was of  of  Bangladesh  born in the  is  1971 a f t e r  federation  typical the  of  eastern  f o l l o w i n g a war  such  wing of  countries. of  Pakistan  independence.  2  One of  the  causes  relationship increased  Pakistan's  between  the  was  of  nevertheless  logical  because  linguistic-cultural  of  the  the  relationship  was not v e r y c l o s e .  In  developmental  of  appeared  point  to  be  administrative government  Local  for  the of  the  tasks  government  considerable  l e n g t h of  generally  community or  failed  to  satisfy  government.  governments  tried  r e o r g a n i z a t i o n of needs: and  the  end of  first,  second,  participating  the to in  local  bodies  the  operated that,  past,  the  British, changes  the  political  a  villages,  1970s,  and  a  was  and  East  local deemed  and  the  in  Bengal)  for  to  the  participate  in  and  Bangladeshi  government.  developed the  people's  administrative  a  institutions  services  to  local  for  Bangladesh  local  Pakistani  support  local  in  necessary  usually  need t o e l i c i t satisfy  thanas from  the  country  people's desire  introduce  Yet  political  the  of  subordinate  administration  have  to provide the  i n view  development.  In  Various to  entire  and b e f o r e  time.  and  yet  level,  By  systems  Pakistan,  lowest,  centre's  of  size  s u b d i v i s i o n s , and  the  of  This  independence.  from  the  state.  necessary  D h a k a , and t h e  the  from  independence,  small  of  important  improvement  East  local  v i e w most  isolated  (previously  have  particular,  activities.  accomplishment  war  the d i s t r i c t s ,  programme c o v e r i n g  essential  its  strained  resulting  After  and a l s o  between t h e c a p i t a l , in  the  units  country's  homogeneity,  government  was  o r g a n i z e d as a u n i t a r y  s e v e r e d i s l o c a t i o n c a u s e d by  of  and t h e  authority.  the  levels  break-up  centre  centralization  Bangladesh seemed  of  out ruling  of  The two  groups;  demands  for  affairs.  But  3  attempts  at  practice  and  villages lowest  r e o r g a n i z a t i o n were g e n e r a l l y all  level  remained  have u s u a l l y  the  Failures  leaders  been  are  achieved  to  a  apparent up  of  in  a  closely  by c o l o n i a l  administrators.  They  roles,  k e e p i n g law  colonial new  performed  independence, a return government rule  system  government  mainly  and o r d e r  also  pre-colonial  was  not  usually  the  old  t r a d i t i o n - b o u n d and u n d e m o c r a t i c ,  to  with  the  after  other  r e a s o n s h e l p e x p l a i n why  government  were not  prevailing the  terminated  be  after  colonial native  maintenance" revenue.  "indigenous"  feasible  because  o l d systems.  systems,  of  independence. systems  independence  The  which  incapable  colonial  the local  and  and c o l l e c t i n g  the  of of  the  "system  to  considered  conditions  case  in  have  reasons.  officials  had u n d e r m i n e d or d e s t r o y e d t h e  rulers  the  these  structure  days  local  at  countries  of  the  new  Local  supervised  past,  number  and a d m i n i s t r a t i o n .  After  the  breaks with the due  especially  as  C o n d i t i o n s in  independent  government  such  in  participation  of most newly  r e o r g a n i z a t i o n or b u i l d i n g  was  consequence  limited.  advocated complete  generally  no  proved f u t i l e .  r e m a i n e d unchanged and p o l i t i c a l  Although  not  "reforms"  of  in  were  dealing These of  and  local  developing  countries. Conscious e f f o r t s quality  of  local  mere a s s e r t i o n s initiating  government  from  and c a r r y i n g  i n d e p e n d e n c e of  were made  the  in  performance,  centre  out c e r t a i n  Bangladesh  in  Pakistan  about local  1971, l i t t l e  to  improve  the  b u t most ended up as the  desirability  activities.  After  attention  was p a i d  of the to  4  local  government  allowed  to c o n t i n u e .  ailing  agrarian  development, Nationalist reliant  the  passed  The  the  was  end of  the  of  the  led  the  councils order  Government of  (Amendment)  Minister  for  establishment  of  tackle  be  set  a number of  village  economy.  resources  and t a l e n t s  facilitate  their  from  grass  the  1980  Bill  and  the v i l l a g e r s ) the  village.  representation with the  Bangladesh  basic  (self-  various  roots.  Gram S a r k a r ,  and w e l f a r e ,  i n the  to in  be  i n the  an  assembly  of  of  assemblies  the v a r i o u s  demographic nature  of  country Sarkar  Bangladesh  in  problems such  as  law  and  order,  villages,  units  by a l l  were  adult  the to  process of  eleven  head).  The and  (a m e e t i n g  of  residents  of  directed  to  and p r o f e s s i o n s  the v i l l a g e  and  negotiation  t h e Gram Shava  classes  that  Gram  (village  through  w h i c h c o u l d be a t t e n d e d The  of  21,  (Retired)  "nation-building"  village-based  chosen  June  the  1  was  were e x p e c t e d t o p o o l  groups  These  on  t h e House s a i d  villages  Gram S a r k a r s  of  in  provided  Captain  developmental  health  which  prosperity.'"  up i n t h e  participation  was  reconciliation  rapid  in Bangladesh  Government,  members were t o be h e a d e d by a Gram P r a d h a n Gram S a r k a r  for  the  Assembly)  Swanirvar  "self-sufficiency to  Act  (National Local  food p r o d u c t i o n , e d u c a t i o n , and t h e  by  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  Sanqsad  were  to  called  governments).  Jatiya  would a t t a i n  however,  i n t r o d u c e d S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  A b d u l H a l i m C h o u d h u r y who moved t h e through  decade,  Bangladesh  government  (BNP)  constitution  i n the  1980.  the  Party  village  By  and t h e p r e - i n d e p e n d e n c e s y s t e m  economy  and  The L o c a l for  reforms,  concerned.  in 5  ensure keeping  5  On  July  Section  10 1982,  86 of  the m i l i t a r y  the  Local  that  repealed  and A d m i n i s t r a t i o n )  said  Government  government,  months e a r l i e r ,  abolished.  in exercise  the  Rules,  The M i n i s t e r  that  the  action  the  Ordinance,  had come  1980, Local  taken  entity  autonomy."  He  "that  Gram S a r k a r  it  and i t s  The  reforming l o c a l  stage, in  in  or,  to c a r r y  like  government  behind  this  said  out  yet  in  one,  the  and  the  have  this  record  been  areas.  fizzled  out  in  the  continual  from  assigned  to  result." aimed  Most at  too  experience  experiment  frequent  of  was  separate  desired  have been s u s p e n d e d w i t h  which  Rahman,  had been c l e a r  functions  rural  have e i t h e r  stood  with  records  another  the  three  (Constitution  Mahbubur  work it  not d e l i v e r  terminated  Bangladesh  government  causes  failed  1976),  only  t h e Gram S a r k a r to  government  c o n t i n u a t i o n might  declaration  attempts  as  also  under  Gram S a r k a r s  "because  and e f f e c t i v e  o p i n i o n as w e l l  power  Government,  t o be v i a b l e  public  conferred  1976 (XC of  into  and  small a unit and  powers  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  for  was  of  6  at  reform  the  planning  the  changes  country.  failure  The merit  investigation.  LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN A DEVELOPMENTAL CONTEXT In  order  government that for  local  to  reform  understand  the  in Bangladesh,  it  governments  t h e p u r p o s e of  face  certain  d e f i n i n g our  particular is  necessary  universal  central  dilemma of to  recognize  problems.  concept,  we  local  First, need  to  6  recognize in  a  that  t h e r e may be v a r i o u s  country  which  organization  of  institutions  are  are  the  set  administrative  a territory  government. defined lowest  range  of  they  level  of  the c e n t r a l  that  operate  in  specific  to  representative  purposes  relationship local  government  local  affairs,  the  central  guarantee in  a  proper  of  government  certain  weak " s e n s e of h a n d l i n g of  noted,  local  partners Moreover,  central  establish a local  public  policies  include  serve  bodies  and l o c a l  bodies.  similar  are  examining  governments.  up f o r  the  concern  minimum s t a n d a r d s ,  but  this  concern  r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of  the  local  units  7  As  can  r e l a t i o n s h i p s with governments government  will  system  Humes never the "not that  allow forward for  central  a  results  Martin  be more t h a n  might  of  people for  and  only  While  to  r e a s o n put  in the  management  reluctant  The u s u a l  in each case  affairs."  often  function  the  local  refer  are  governments  u n d e r s t o o d by  set  the  agencies  used to  which  a  self-government."  local  central are  also  central  covering  is  government  in t h e i r  of  elected  governments  a d e q u a t e autonomy t o t h e s e by t h e  which  institutions central  authority  jurisdiction  bodies  can be b e t t e r  between  the  p u r p o s e s by t h e  The t e r m i s  the  government  government may  term " l o c a l  under  developing countries  with  g o v e r n m e n t a l d e p a r t m e n t s or  a l t h o u g h the  d i s t i n g u i s h e d by u s i n g t h e conditions  Local  selected  in a l o c a l i t y ,  The  these  government  Local  w h i c h have  l i m i t e d types  areas.  or  local  accordance  have g e n e r a l  services.  of  process.  units  demarcated for  Usually,  in  administrative  t o d e c i d e and implement c e r t a i n within  up  levels  the have  junior  government.  be r e l u c t a n t create  8  to  power  7  centres  capable  central in  c o m p e t i n g w i t h or  government",  such a  centres. local  of  9  they  will  way  that  will  The  ruling elite  weaken  hands of  challenge easy  the  for  trust  cannot  rulers. rulers  o u t l y i n g areas be  But  the  problem facing  the  active  achieve local  actual  through  for  end,  the  limited,  Schultz  has  elite  influence  over  The  the  rulers  rural  rulers  once  system,  the  it  centre,  it  to is and  lack  because  the  weapons  bodies  rulers'  open  recognize  developing  of  would  they  however,  local  the  merit  creating  promote  popular  locally.  The  allow  the  local  bodies to  enjoy  control  do  local the ability  not  new  exercised rulers  structures  delegate  enough  effectively.  government national of  is  government  and c r e a t e  to operate  politics  in  To  made  they  to  same t i m e .  be  on p a p e r  over  out  the  Thus c e n t r a l  Yet  benefits  at  secure  to  and c e n t r a l  institutions  control  the  countries  They have t o  which o s t e n s i b l y  officials.  pointed  in  electorate  decisions  affairs.  these  bringing p o l i t i c a l  to  the  government  managing l o c a l  Centralized  centralized  it.  in  the  authority  government  for  that  power  may become f o r m i d a b l e  through  institutions  reform l o c a l  authority  apprehensive  control  units  alternative  controlling villages.  and a l l o w  amount of  extremely  often  one of  government  participation  local  the  population.  s u p p o r t of  this  they  demonstrated  local  only  often  to e x e r c i s e  the  not  to organize  existing  With a s t r o n g l y  alienate  is  seek  opposing  o p p o s i t i o n g r o u p s , who may use t h e s e  the  dominate the  is  is  b o d i e s become p o w e r f u l ,  in the  also  effectively  is  useful  ruling  the 'Japanese  by m a n i p u l a t i n g  the  in  party. national  allocation  8  of to  public  resources.  garner  support  members of closely can  for  a political  as do t h e i r  build  by t h e m .  But  1 0  b a s e d on l a n d ,  ability  of  standpoint  of  are  leaders  central  Moreover,  satisfy  the  affairs,  at  useful  to  authority. differ  economic  at  by  the  growth  the  new  control  the  government  deficits  and t h e  totally  support achieved  The  in  and t h e i r  on  centre  and  tendency finds fail  central  in  programmes  authority in  may  governmental provide  "the  new n a t i o n a l  1 2  the  as  a  more for be  needs power  much  desired  to  central local  continue  bodies  allocations  control  the  financial  t o even  government  funds.  for  results.  increasing  local  central  As a r e s u l t ,  inadequate  cannot  political  operations  and  return  a  government  government  exercises  leaders  for  local  possible.  New  the  to  to continue  funds are  From  followings  well  general,  huge  the  resistance  to d e l i v e r  face  as  and  local  e x t e n s i o n of  programmes.  from l o c a l because  states,  available  dependent  survival.  of  nations  established  reduce  patronage  followers.  participation  level,  they  influenced  through  of  as  yet  connections,  their  patterns  regime  institution's  Developing  to  and t h e  produce the  for  together  level,  t o b u i l d up s u p p o r t  local  which  hinterlands" as  family  is  government  directly  retained  such l e a d e r s  demand  A l t h o u g h the  across  national  controlled decentralization  least  Local  group  which are  help  elites,  growing  device  the  usually  the patronage  party.  usually  at  wealth,  be u t i l i z e d e f f e c t i v e l y  party.  the  do not  followings  The f o l l o w i n g s  the  national  counterparts  networks  can  the  party  up p e r s o n a l  1 1  t h e main p u r p o s e of  are for  and may demand Very  planned  little  and  is  executed  9  without  the  consent  p o p u l a t i o n and t h e because  they  be  leaders  feel  satisfactorily." can  and a s s i s t a n c e of  of  local  t h u s made even Such  councils  "unable  wealth.  They  rulers.  powerholders  on t h e  government.  basis  almost  This  local  inhabitants  result  in  realize  were r a i s e d  leaders,  they  become  in the  family,  tasks  nothing  back on  the  locality  is  of  local  changes  assume  influentials  for  in  changes.  from t h e  non-achievement  the  or  control  of  by  colonial  the  Independence but  They e i t h e r the  both c a s e s ,  objectives  and local  of  did  the not  gradually  by g o v e r n m e n t s  suspicion  resisted  In  land  was a c c e p t e d by  The a t t e m p t with  over  ties,  areas,  i n two ways.  outside.  of  these  was v i e w e d  reacted  established  kinship  was not d i s t u r b e d  new c o u n c i l s and assumed c o n t r o l , councils  firmly  automatically  institutions  and  frustrated  that  and f a l l  whose p l a c e  and went u n c h a l l e n g e d .  immediate  reform l o c a l  of  situation  The a u t h o r i t y  demands  become  local  to perform t h e i r  inhabitants  influentials,  The  stronger.  local  generations  the  centre.  a c c o m p l i s h e d by s u c h i n s t i t u t i o n s ,  patronage  these  the  elected  themselves The l o c a l  1 3  of  by  to  these  joined  the  operation  of  the  local  result  was  government  reforms. Thus,  changes  strengthened the areas. local tussle  Their  for  h o l d of  power  government  in  local existing  i n c r e a s e d as  institutions  power and c o n t r o l  and s u c h l o c a l  leaders  often  at  government local they the  elites  have over  gained c o n t r o l  intermediate  between t h e c e n t r a l results  in  generally the of  rural the  levels. ruling  new The  elites  non-cooperation  and  10  resistance  by  the  group.  control  over  threat  to  their  dominance.  Local  antagonize  these  leaders  it  the  local  latter  c o m m u n i t i e s v i e w any  "as  community and t h e r e b y  that  their  rural  interests  elites,  trickling  or power  the  The c e n t r e - l o c a l i t y by,  the  Low  d e g r e e of  levels  local  of  leaders  latter,  and t h e  more  control  efforts  local  bodies  however, have  resulted  on  institutions effect,  is  toward  it.  The  are  by  levels  pooling  of  the  local  work.  The  of in  local local  bound  to of  who  feel  1  The  power  from  to  central  the  of  require  affairs,  and  for  training  in  for  the  level the  to  manpower geared  to of  In  general,  local  affairs  leaders.  the  The  traditional  b o d i e s or  making  local  the  extension  local  of  to  governments  them.  reformed l o c a l  leadership,  power.  an  challenge  of  receive  reforms are  o u s t e d from l o c a l  fate  shaped  available  to operate  influentials  and i s  With regard  Most  1 5  to  participation  d e c i d e d by t h e a t t i t u d e  participation  to prevent  new q u a l i f i e d  unable either  a  be a f f e c t e d . " "  facilities  of  and t h e r e f o r e ,  are  and  quality  of  tendency  i n a d e a r t h of  leaders  influentials dependent  low  as  structure  individuals  influences,  lack  more p e r s o n n e l  extremely  available  of  and  reform is  the v i l l a g e s  r e s o u r c e s and u s i n g them o p t i m a l l y . development a c t i v i t i e s ,  change  power  two c o n t i n u i n g p r o b l e m s .  Leemans d i s c u s s e d t h e  exercise  at  exercising  levels.  p r e p a r e d n e s s of  are  the  positions will  relationship  literacy  attempt  g r o u p s or  make a l l  lowest  who a r e  government  alters  arouses  therefore,  down t o  People  become  the  new  government,  in  influentials  literacy,  strength  of  extent links  11  with  intermediate  power  centres  which v i l l a g e s  differ  features  collectively  can  differing political involves  the  marks  the  and l a r g e  of  of  a  and t i e s  is  a significant  the  of  an o t h e r w i s e  villages  used  as  a basis  by e a c h v i l l a g e  under  to  It  mobilization action,"  or  observed stages  modernity  have become a v a i l a b l e Since  1 7  degree is  and  where  have begun t o be b r o k e n down  homogeneous  study.  These  commitment t o  manifestation  t o compare t h e  of  of  the  it  to understand  the  place  in  the  villages,  its  preparation  of  the  localities  receive  and u t i l i z e  Attention interactions order  to  Bangladesh. basis  of  followers. who  is  support Nicholas  must a l s o  Factions  Local  most in h i s  that  b i d to out  factional  influentials  and a d m i n i s t r a t i o n  are  relationships  and t h e i r in  the  i n f o r m a l groups t h a t  can  be  inhabitants  capable  points  be p a i d t o  local  politics  needs  and to  power.  among  study  the  be  achieved  taken  towards  of  among  will  preparedness  essential  new  degree  differences  country, of  for  d e g r e e of m o b i l i z a t i o n t h a t has contribution  in  outcome of  through s e v e r a l  thought."  mobilization  the  into action  transition  and  as  The p r o c e s s  achieved  aspects  Bangladesh.  considered  commitment  individuals  life  in  "attitudinal  is  orientations  numbers of  patterns  an  end  beginning  "traditional  be  translating This  1 6  of  some i m p o r t a n t  themselves  modi 1 i z a t i o n .  growth  and " a means of behaviour."  among  are  of  ally  by  themselves  h e l p i n g them out  exercise that  fulfilled  control  factions  are  followers  rural  over  in  areas  of  develop  on  the  a leader  for  his  with in  and  the  leader  return  for  local  affairs.  political  groups  their  whose  12  members a r e ties,  recruited  patron-client  politico-economic  lead  to  India  in  relations,  bonds.  Factionalism institutions  on d i v e r s e  mutual  the  ways.  Bailey  stalemate  in  "appear  as a r e n a s  where t h e r e  decisions  implemented." "necessary between  conflicts  centres  not  is  that  his  them,  that  Islam  decision  decisions."  villagers.  Formally  c a n be r e n d e r e d  kinship and  if  taken,  rarely  perform  the  A l t h o u g h the  2 0  making  that but  "factional  rather  b o d i e s which are constituted  local  the  tie  b a s e d upon p e r s o n a l  argued  if  in  disputation  help  Islam's anthropological  2 2  ineffective  neutralize  is  often  panchayats  endless and,  government  factions  factions  followers  2 1  local  and t h e  an  seldom t a k e n ,  informal v i l l a g e  such b o d i e s cannot  stated  councils,  found  impede  reject  around  powerful bodies  do or  and  between  as  and r e l i g i o u s  of  in o r g a n i z i n g c o n f l i c t . "  leader  transactions  local  are  Nicholas  functions  the  implement  which  1 9  interest  operation  total  about  such  1 8  affects  several  principles,  influentials  study  c o n t r o l l e d by  local  faction  to  government in c o n t r o l  who do not  of  join  them. Nicholas as major  factors  Bangladesh, factors. dependent  listed  n e i g h b o u r h o o d , e c o n o m i c s and  on w h i c h I n d i a n v i l l a g e  factions  e c o n o m i c s and k i n s h i p have emerged a s  A faction on h i s  ruling p o l i t i c a l factionalism are  caste,  in  interested  leader's  contacts party  are  outside  i n the  the  cultivated  the v i l l a g e s in t h e i r  influence  2  by a m b i t i o u s  may h i n d e r  own o b j e c t s  develop. the  village  village. "  Links  than  2 3  those  In  important is with  leaders.  reforms because  rather  kinship  also the But  factions of  the  13  society  as a  whole.  2 5  LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN There  has  emergence  of  undertaken Studies  been  to  analyze  deal  with  local  government  local  national  during  the of  1943-45.  attitudinal focussed rural two  study  on  East  Pakistan  villages  in  anthropological relatively  less  which  is  programmes,  3 0  The  useful but  level.  reported  and  a  few  mention  Bangladesh  concerned  the  East  in  six  Bengal)  results  district.  with  Mukherjee  undertaken  (then  in C o m i l l a  structure  all,  Ramkrishna  Bangladesh  Zaidi  essentially  at  inquiry  been  development.  if  directly  the  of  an  Bertocci  2 8  community o r g a n i z a t i o n s  w h i c h he a n a l y z e d by c o n d u c t i n g r e s e a r c h Comilla  study,  district.  Elusive  emphasis  Experiment"  in A c t i o n .  in  and,  is  have  Franda  There are  an economic  villagers  compared t o c u l t u r a l , "Comilla  of  2 6  these  village  Hafeez  social  dealing with  studies  and  events  none of  the  of  few  Maniruzzaman  district  2 7  studies  very  in p a s s i n g .  results  Bogra  of  post-independence p o l i t i c a l  but at  but  political  only  government  published  barrage  Barua,  studies,  villages  a  Bangladesh,  by J a h a n ,  village  BANGLADESH: THE GAP IN OUR KNOWLEDGE  on  economic is  book for fails  the  Villages political and  subject  extremely by.  of  power  understanding  Raper's  well  Bertocci,  factors.  Rural  done  places  specific to deal  as The  Development  i m p r e s s i v e amount of  completely  in  relationships  ecological  i n c l u d e s an  almost  An  2 9  in  detail  developmental with the  broad  14  social,  economic  programmes  and  political  initiated  "anthropological  study  at of  factionalism  in a v i l l a g e  touches  the  on  actual  shows t h e manner gradually pays  little  attempt  to  attention  councils  of  out  changes  of  Basic  None  of  administration  Sarkar  scheme  village  level  with  The  3 1  the  in  rural  village,  higher  East  that  Pakistan,  local  is  in  the  has  included  and p o l i t i c s  not  the  union  cover  at  only  local  investigated  the  and p o i n t e d than  in  West  of  that  the  in  operation  Nicholson  3 4  are  in  Pakistan,  with  government  and Khan  Pakistan. is  3 5  prevalent  Swanirvar  was  instituted  the  foregoing  Gram  at  the  studies  level. Bangladesh  in h i s  in modernizing  village  the d i s t r i c t  local  any  Bangladesh politics  situation  None  study  or a t  nomenclature  development  It  and  levels  Islam's  institutions  has  "in  w i t h the  study  government.  rural  East  present.  below  administration analyzed  principally  the  government  more  in Bangladesh.  administration does  in  works d e a l s  in Bangladesh at  study  occurred  role  these  Abedin  in  an  Unfortunately,  Tepper  3 2  many  offers  W h i l e Rahman and Sobhan have s t u d i e d t h e  3 3  its  penetrates  in  at  government  on l o c a l  Pakistan.  Democracy  considered  processes  local  the  of D h a k a .  politics  s y s t e m of  works  East  evolution  substance."  which d e a l s  R a s h i d u z z a m a n has w r i t t e n about  in  that  local  of  Islam  in the d i s t r i c t political  to  r e f o r m the  still.  politics"  the c o u n t r y s i d e .  The number of fewer  Comilla.  i n which p a r t y  reach  significance  level and  analysis  societies,  activities.  subdivision  administration  of  prevailing  3 6  local  but  his  F o c u s s i n g on  levels, in  Abedin  undivided  15  Pakistan. or  less  Local  government  similar  villages  in  not o n l y  hinder  to  Bangladesh  community."  "for  control the  changes  in  existing  scholars upon  local  i n t e n d i n g to  systematic  reforms  in  failure. Sarkar,  There are  abolition.  power  and  of  is  to  time  more  Zaman s t u d i e d  three  factional  status society  status  as  in  available than  for  3 8  building  in  Bangladesh.  investigate  the  topic  are  history  of  At  local  outcome  and  political  factors  contributing  functions, in  on  to  draw  government  consequences,  the  modes of the  block  present,  unable  their  voids  quo  fighting  rather  government  the  cleavages  factions  expected to provide a  structure,  aims  was  rival  the  no o r g a n i z e d d a t a  These are  dissertation  of  i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e  the  its  result  structure."  Bangladesh,  particularly,  the  framework  social  studying  is  that  the  "tend to help preserve  resources,  This dissertation for  but  at  in P a k i s t a n .  and c o n c l u d e d  This  3 7  over  the  system  change,  the  within  the  in Bangladesh  to  system  and their  of  Gram  o p e r a t i o n and  literature  which  its this  fill.  FAILURE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT REFORMS: A WORKING HYPOTHESIS "Failure" objectives". government outcome build  implies  the  A discrepancy  that  could  up s u p p o r t  "non-achievement  between  introduced a reform be for  considered the  a  the in  stated local  failure.  of  goals  objectives  government In  their  of  or the  and  its  efforts  to  r u l i n g g r o u p , governments o f t e n  devise  1 6  plans  with grandiose objectives  fixed periods. achieving  support  but  for  If  an  local  local  incumbent  objectives.  where  there  participate  in  consequences. future  local this  small,  and t h e  the  pertaining general  I  are  These groups, local  are  bodies  affairs.  wider I  facilitate also  at  this  never  tried  the  the  Failure  used  villagers' to  of  of  to  view,  wasted.  assess in  to  p r o g r e s s on  totally  In  "success"  mind:  1)  the  rhetoric/realpolitik  the  Local  local  positive  perspective. literature  would now p r o p o s e t h e for  the  council  some  point  to  of  the c i t i z e n s  least,  in the  secure  desire  of  a t t a i n development  that  local  institutions  rural  support to  and  following  failure  government  administration  be  of  considered  From are  short  local  for  of  some p r o g r e s s  far a  theoretical  in Bangladesh.  and s a t i s f y  be  2)  as an e x p l a n a t i o n  can  of  considerations  to Bangladesh,  to  mass  standard  to detect  short-range/long-range the  a  may f a l l  indications,  these  of  temporarily,  as  opportunity  have g e n e r a l l y  the  reform  essential  least  in  developmental  initiation  may  disparity;  basis  argument  government  affairs  with  only  other  used  the  reform attempts  objectives/outcome  On  not  s y s t e m s can be b u i l t .  and 3)  and at  even t h o u g h i t  These  "failure"  a r e f o r m may f a i l  may be p o s s i b l e  before,  government  disparity;  is  none  dissertation,  and  it  local  within  that  The mere e s t a b l i s h m e n t  was  however  not a t t a i n a b l e  regime.  rhetoric  however,  stated  which  participation  government,  projects,  is  succeed in c r e a t i n g ,  government  measurement, in  Another p o s s i b i l i t y  greater  objectives,  which are  for  areas. ruling  participate through  in  strong  17  centralized administration  leads  decentralization  s o l u t i o n to a d m i n i s t r a t i v e  The d e v e l o p m e n t rulers order  to  seek  of  a  appeals for  with  a place  in  achieve  to the  local  goals  continually  kept  run  vague,  several  inability  who  population. ruling  of  and c o n t r o l  rulers  political  the  Local  leaders party  preferences,  that  the  the  support  group  in  they  government.  return  seek  to  governments in  the  The p l a n s  of  the  rulers.  in d i f f e r e n t  standardize procedures Party  local  ability  bodies  to  f i n d that  help  are  and  influentials  the  party. benefit  they The  become  with  and c o n t r o l  generally,  ruling  affects  remains  They need not  This The  affiliations  in c l o s e r  in  areas.  the  expressing support  brings dividends  and a s s o c i a t e d b e n e f i t s .  confrontation with observes  of  ruling  b o d i e s c a n be o r g a n i z e d and run  system.  have  political  local  differing practices  the  the  difficulties  convenience  to  to  rewarding  Bangladesh's  innumerable  the  try  institutions.  unrealistic,  in  in  over  and  for  the  electorate  Thus t h e  influentials  local  governments  coordination irrelevant,  the  bodies.  compels  c a n be won  p l a n n i n g , and b e c a u s e  are  suit  widely  of  faulty  reforms  so t h a t  in  local  into  of  ways t o  results  people  of  local  that  problems.  parties  constituency  institutions  government  that  implementation  rural  believe  rural  When new p o l i t i c a l  the  in  to  concurrently,  overwhelmingly  government  places  directly  the  base,  rulers  politics,  in power.  power  As a r e s u l t  the  electoral  reforming l o c a l  recruits  the  s u p p o r t of  to continue  establish by  is  the  those local  for  the  contacts  with  reveal try  local  to  their avoid  population  from s u c h r e f o r m s ,  and  18  continue At  t o a v o i d the the  operation strive  to of  of  to  efforts  pressures a  in  councils.  spare  with  the  base depends on t h e power. to  Changes i n  achieve  local  such  is  is  often  influentials  success  in  The  impede t h e  fight  bodies  such  attempts operation  one a n o t h e r ,  usually  This c o n f l i c t  a  larger  and  succumb  occurs  to  the  obtain control  by  of  local  party  these  leaders  systems are  and t h e achieved.  the  group,  leaders  in  declaring  influentials  label  group without  government  not  While  to  because  dissatisfied  to d i s c r e d i t  political  ruling  alliances  administration  their  factions  i n power.  support local  Local  the  s u p p o r t e r s can be accommodated i n  a national  leadership,  affects  r u l i n g group.  opportunity  the p a r t y  not a l w a y s r e q u i r e  the  not.  there  no  and  these  The weaker g r o u p s seek  alliance  their  of  loyal  Generally,  will  office.  of  mobilization  factions  from t h o s e who a r e handful  to  Village  control  institutions.  institutions.  clients,  more members f o r  institutions.  group  which  government  their  government  political  makes them i n v a l u a b l e  local  only  level,  local  retain  recruit  the  lowest  new l o c a l  do  to  maintain  a sound  political  to  continue  generally  s t a t e d p u r p o s e of  in  geared  improving  19  PURPOSE OF PRESENT STUDY This dissertation of  continual  government the  failure  s y s t e m of  p e r i o d of  and,  (AL).  number the  of  about  Bangladesh by G r e a t  changes  .  case  literature  Britain  will  local  government  however,  of  to  government  Bangladesh  deal  with  which  be  under  the  local  rule  will  Pakistan, Awami  against  a  current  in  failures  in  The main body of  the  the  attempt  l e a d e r s h i p of  government  local cover  by t h e  tested  for  causes  the  explanations  institutions. analyze  in  and l a t e r  account  will  the  The i n q u i r y  i n d e p e n d e n c e p e r i o d of  The B a n g l a d e s h  dissertation,  of  the  President  Ziaur  p r o b l e m s by  instituting  Sarkar. Gram S a r k a r s ,  extend  local  Prior  Parishad,  which  the  the  lowest  to  level  and  the  started  emphasis roots.  was The  expected . to  the  beyond t h e  in  the  there  bring  between  in Bangladesh this  reform  lowest  villages  government  t o be r e c o g n i z e d  as  upon b u i l d i n g t h e  level local  in  local  aims t o d i s c o v e r attempt  level,  (five  the to  units.  Union fifteen)  closer  units  affairs.  Gram S a r k a r to  the  My s t u d y  the d i f f e r e n c e s ,  and p r e v i o u s  reforms  in  Gradually,  s y s t e m from t h e of  to  Union  system e x i s t i n g  important  organization government  expected  of Gram S a r k a r ,  were no v i l l a g e - b a s e d  b e i n g put village  local  were  previous  establishment  e n a b l i n g them t o p a r t i c i p a t e Sarkar  councils,  c o v e r e d a number of  Bangladesh, villages  new v i l l a g e  government  Parishad.  was  and a n a l y z e  s o c i o - e c o n o m i c and p o l i t i c a l  reforming  Gram  identify  bring  rule  the post  developmental  Rahman  to  rural  colonial  as w e l l ,  League  aims t o  and grass was  people, of if  in the  Gram any, same  20  area. As w e l l , scheme  I  and  will  examine  introduced.  This  introduction. effectiveness whether  of  they  administrative The major Under  what  introduced achieved  the  evolution  explain  However,  the  benefits on  structures,  to  purposes for  which they  in  such  were  Why d i d Was  the  system l i n k  involved  in  the  To  the p a r t i c i p a n t s ? of  local  c o n t i n u e b e y o n d t h e BNP D i d t h e Gram S a r k a r s politics failure  of of  play  Bangladesh?  regime?  reform?  and  reforms  were  How  these the at  Who were  the  costs  and  have any  the  to  effect  s y s t e m not  BNP u l t i m a t e l y in  be  effectively  Why d i d t h e  likely  to  principally  were t h e  role  are:  introduce  capital?  What d i d t h e  a significant  t h e Gram S a r k a r  determine  political  aimed  What  the  to  extent  D i d Gram S a r k a r  What a r e  and  government  administration? rule?  functions  government  what  with the  system?  its  What was e x p e c t e d  strategy  localities  was  seeks answers  local  Zia's  it  behind  the  study  the p a s t ?  reforms?  Sarkar  were e s t a b l i s h e d .  q u e s t i o n s to which t h i s circumstances  the q u a l i t y  intent  accomplish  able  Gram  which  were  scheme?  for  under  the  c o n s o l i d a t i n g and l e g i t i m i z i n g Z i a ' s  people  the  must be a n a l y z e d  successful?  c o u l d the  of  circumstances  will  in Bangladesh  Gram S a r k a r  the  t h e Gram S a r k a r  through  attempts  review  gain?  national  c o n s e q u e n c e s of  the  21  THE METHOD I  have  government reforms  used  secondary  published  documents t o a n a l y z e  in  beneficial  Bangladesh. to  While  Bangladesh  collecting  in  in  data  villages.  operation  since  had l i t t l e  most  of  trouble  inclinations ultimately I three  able  decided different  surveys  would  administrative  was  I  the  recent  undertook a  w i t h the  as  immensely  trip  intention  government  and  b e c a u s e Gram S a r k a r  week  some I  was  not  freely  situation  in  the  In  I in  countryside,  of the  had been  of  the  new  arrived  in  and  t o overcome t h i s to conduct  activities  as  I  of  had  not  interview  w o u l d have Dhaka,  liked.  however,  i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e  had d e c i d e d  to  villages.  too,  social  and  I  new  concentrate Although  the  some  villagers  their  political  conditions,  I  was  handicap.  surveys  among Gram S a r k a r  the c o u n t r y . the  I  to  a s k i n g q u e s t i o n s about  economic  reveal  that  capital,  the  I  able  adequate  any c a s e ,  villages  before  problems  as  a stranger and  field.  well  government  efforts,  central  research a c t i v i t i e s  of  past  1982  a  in c o l l e c t i n g  scheme.  wary  exercise  servants  t e n s i o n had r e a c h e d t h e were  local  e x p e c t e d some e f f e c t s  declared  example,  tense  my  the  created  and c i v i l  Gram S a r k a r  of  1980, and I  was  for  the  from  the  was a p p r o p r i a t e  This  anticipated;  in  of  as  visible.  Law  Bangladesh.  politicians  this  summer  both  t o be  Martial  Despite  the  The t i m e  institution  failure  reach c o n c l u s i o n s about  d e v e l o p m e n t s had t o be s t u d i e d to  the  materials  real  g o i n g on  My hope was t h a t  nature under  members  the  of  political new  system.  in  such and I  22  decided  that  government  in  addition  reform that  acquire  the  villages  themselves.  with  the  represent the  country  and t h e i r used  describe and  can  The s e l e c t i o n of  the  representing  I  in  have  achieved d i f f e r e n t  c o u l d be u s e d t o  Mantala,  the d i s t r i c t s tried  levels  be f o u n d i n  the  of  to  was  the  regions villages  study.  I  have  C o l i p u r and R a i n a g a r of M y m e n s i n g h ,  include v i l l a g e s  political  of  Rajshahi  and w e s t e r n  names of  made  regions and  been m e n t i o n e d i n t h i s  names of  local to  of M y m e n s i n g h , C o m i l l a  have not  on  needed  various  The a c t u a l  villages  I  villages  respectively.  fictitious three  of  only  south-eastern,  Rajshahi.  they  insights  that  Dhaka,  north-central,  leaders  the  "macro" p e r s p e c t i v e in  The d i s t r i c t s the  the  can be o b t a i n e d  intention  Bangladesh.  of  "micro"  to  to  Comilla  which  have  m o b i l i z a t i o n , hoping  that  r e a c h c o n c l u s i o n s about  other  villages  in  Bangladesh. The  villages  accessibility month stay  and t h e  i n e a c h of  the  i n the v i l l a g e s ,  villagers  and  local  o b s e r v i n g the leaders. Mantala, local their the  were c h o s e n w i t h some c o n s i d e r a t i o n  I  their  enlisted  contacts  personnel roles  villages I  the  the  summer of of  in  1982. talking  their  disputes  by  about  a  D u r i n g my with  the  the  other  two v i l l a g e s .  I  local  village was a b l e bodies  and  village  local  t o the  the  meetings,  some  existed. new  spent  to  of  access  w i t h the  I  attending  help  who l i v e d  the v i l l a g e s .  data.  local  where t h e y  involved in  of  of  opportunity  leaders,  gave me e a s y  files,  in  had t h e  settlement  and s t u d e n t s  office  availability  given  residents  The  leaders, to and  The i n f o r m a t i o n d e r i v e d  in  and  interview analyze from  this  23  exercise reforms  will in  be u t i l i z e d t o  local  government  Gram S a r k a r s and were  Bangladesh.  were a l m o s t  inoperative  officially  opportunity  d e m i s e of  the  abolished  Bangladesh. the was  termination  OUTLINE  were  for  my  to  history  reviewed  is  local  of  I  time. the  body i n  in  s p r i n g of  1982. the  their  of  was  1982 still  T h i s gave me  villagers the  to  the  history  of  criticisms  because  s u p p o r t i n g t h e Gram S a r k a r s .  study  because  both the  This  initiation  and  sections  in  Chapter  II,  c o u l d be c o v e r e d .  of  into  the  p r o b l e m s of  by  III  examining the  the  and  BNP  political  system.  political  chapter  tries  decided to looks at  context  to  and  government reform  decline  Bangladesh  parties,  The n e x t  substantial In  in Bangladesh  attempts  e x p l o r e s the p o l i t i c a l  political  government  local  attention  Chapter  g r o w t h of  the  seven  i n t r o d u c t i o n and a c o n c l u s i o n .  with s p e c i a l  Gram S a r k a r and t h e  divided  an  consequences.  BNP  by t h e  failure  OF THE STUDY  addition  in  at  reactions  more v o c a l  of Gram S a r k a r  The s t u d y  the  the  chronic  July  villages  was no l o n g e r  convenient  in  village-based  They  government  in the  to observe  only  the  in  c o n d u c t i n g my s u r v e y s an  explain  of  Nationalist  to a s c e r t a i n  investigates  the  antecedents  Party  (BNP)  t h e p o s i t i o n of  The c i r c u m s t a n c e s  legislation  their  t h e Awami League  i n t r o d u c e Gram S a r k a r the  and  under w h i c h are  is  of (AL) as the the  discussed.  of Gram S a r k a r introduction  in of  the the  24  concept of  of  the  BNP.  Sarkar  are  Mantala, low power  Gram S a r k a r , The  of  a village  have been  initiated,  links  in C o m i l l a d i s t r i c t . and t h e  Rainagar,  a village  This  with n a t i o n a l  is  attempts the final  in  cases  illustrate  are  chapter  previous chapters questions  raised  in  the  of  various  the  where a  traditional  the  story  Development has  Bangladesh  the  course  politics. all  villages.  of  3 9  the  split is  into  studied  In  These  close cases,  villages  of  the  Chapter  f i n d i n g s of  answering  the  in  reform VIII,  findings highlighted. the  of  activities  district  effects  to b r i n g together  earlier.  in  presents  family  level  compared and i m p o r t a n t attempts  Gram S a r k a r  a p e r i - u r b a n community w h i c h has  representative  some t y p i c a l  Gram  in Bangladesh,  in Rajshahi  and d i s t r i c t  a l t h o u g h by no means Bangladesh,  dominant  policies of  has l e f t  C h a p t e r VI  the  and p o t e n t i a l  describes  development  undisturbed.  in Chapter VII.  V  of Mymensingh d i s t r i c t  Colipur,  factions.  functions  Chapter  political  structure  r e l a t i o n s h i p with  structure,  analyzed.  a village  level  and i t s  all  The the  research  25  NOTES 1  Duane Social 458.  Lockard, "Local Government," in E n c y c l o p e d i a of S c i e n c e s (New Y o r k : M a c m i l l a n - F r e e P r e s s , 1 9 6 7 ) , p.  2  See L. Gray Cowan, L o c a l Government i n West A f r i c a Y o r k : C o l u m b i a U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1958) .  3  Harold Countries  4  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r , June 22, 1980. In this dissertation , I w i l l use t h e term Gram S a r k a r t o d e n o t e S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r , t h e v i l l a g e i n s t i t u t i o n s e t up under t h e L o c a l Government (Amendment) A c t , 1980.  5  Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r Manual [in Bengali] (Dhaka: Local Government I n s t i t u t e , 1 9 8 0 ) , p . 4 .  6  The New N a t i o n ,  7  Samuel Humes and Eileen Martin, The S t r u c t u r e of L o c a l Government T h r o u g h o u t t h e W o r l d (The H a g u e : N i j h o f f , 1 9 6 1 ) , p. 31.  8  Ibid.,  p.  9  A.F. Hague: 17.  Leemans, C h a n g i n g P a t t e r n s of L o c a l Government (The I n t e r n a t i o n a l U n i o n of L o c a l A u t h o r i t i e s , 1 9 7 0 ) , p.  10  Ann S c h u l t z , L o c a l P o l i t i c s and N a t i o n - S t a t e s : Case S t u d i e s i n P o l i t i c s and P o l i c y (Santa Barbara, California: Clio Books, 1979), p p . 63-4.  11  Samuel Humes and Eileen Martin, The S t r u c t u r e of L o c a l G o v e r n m e n t s : A C o m p a r a t i v e S u r v e y of 81 C o u n t r i e s (The H a g u e : I n t e r n a t i o n a l U n i o n of L o c a l A u t h o r i t i e s , 1 9 6 9 ) , p. 458.  12  Lockard,  op.cit.  13  Leemans,  op.cit  14  Ibid.  , p.  15  Ibid.  , pp.  16  J. P. Nettl, Political Mobilization: A Sociological A n a l y s i s of Methods and C o n c e p t s ( L o n d o n : F a b e r and Faber, 1967) , p p . 32-3.  F. (New  Alderfer, L o c a l Government i n Y o r k : M c G r a w - H i l l , 1 9 6 4 ) , p. ~2~.  July  (New  Developing  11, 1982.  49.  , p. , p.  458. 48.  38. 48-9.  26  17  Gabriel Almond and G. Bingham P o w e l l , J r . , Comparative P o l i t i c s : A Developmental Approach (Boston: Little Brown, 1 9 6 6 ) , p. 258".  18  See R. W. N i c h o l a s , " F a c t i o n s : A Comparative A n a l y s i s , " in P o l i t i c a l Systems and t h e D i s t r i b u t i o n of Power, ed., Banton. A.S.A. Monographs 2 (London: T a v i s t o c k , 1965), pp. 44-6.  19  F. G. B a i l e y , " D e c i s i o n s by Consensus in Councils and Committees," in P o l i t i c a l Systems and t h e D i s t r i b u t i o n of Power , p. 15.  20  R.  21  R. W. N i c h o l a s , "Segmentary F a c t i o n a l P o l i t i c a l i n P o l i t i c a l A n t h r o p o l o g y , e d s . , M. J. Swartz, T u r n e r and A . Tunden ( C h i c a g o : A l d i n e , 1 9 6 6 ) , p.  22  A.K.M. Aminul Islam, A Bangladesh V i l l a g e , C o h e s i o n : An A n t h r o p o l o g i c a l S t u d y of P o l i t i c s M a s s . : Schenkman, 1 9 7 4 ) , p. 162.  23  R. W. N i c h o l a s , " V i l l a g e F a c t i o n s and P o l i t i c a l Parties in Rural West Bengal," J o u r n a l of Commonwealth P o l i t i c a l S t u d i e s • , II, 1 (November 1 9 6 3 ) . See p p . 18-22.  24  Burton British  25  Raymond F i r t h , " F a c t i o n s Societies," The B r i t i s h p. 292.  26  See Rounaq J a h a n , P a k i s t a n : F a i l u r e i n N a t i o n a l Integration (New Y o r k : C o l u m b i a U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1972); Tushar K. Barua, P o l i t i c a l E l i t e in Bangladesh: A SocioA n t h r o p o l o g i c a l and H i s t o r i c a l A n a l y s i s of t h e P r o c e s s e s of T h e i r Formation" (Bern: Peter Lang, 1 978 ); Talukder Maniruzzaman, The B a n g l a d e s h R e v o l u t i o n and i t s A f t e r m a t h ( D h a k a : B a n g l a d e s h Books I n t e r n a t i o n a l , 1 9 8 0 ) ; and Marcus F r a n d a , B a n g l a d e s h : The F i r s t Decade (New D e l h i and M a d r a s : South A s i a n P u b l i s h e r s P v t . L t d . , 1982).  27  Ramkrishna Mukherjee, Six Popular Prakashan, 1971).  28  S.M. Hafeez Zaidi, The V i l l a g e C u l t u r e i n T r a n s i t i o n : A S t u d y of E a s t P a k i s t a n R u r a l S o c i e t y " ( H o n o l u l u : E a s t -West C e n t r e P r e s s , 1970). v 772  29  Peter Bertocci, E l u s i v e V i l l a g e s : S o c i a l S t r u c t u r e and Community O r g a n i z a t i o n i n R u r a l E a s t P a k i s t a n (Unpublished Ph.D. D i s s e r t a t i o n , M i c h i g a n S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y , 1970).  W.  Nicholas,  op.cit.  , p.  47. Systems," V. W. 47.  C o n f l i c t and (Cambridge,  Benedict, " F a c t i o n a l i s m in M a u r i t i a n V i l l a g e s , " J o u r n a l of S o c i o l o g y , 8, 4 ( 1 9 5 7 ) , p. 337. in Indian and Overseas J o u r n a l of S o c i o l o g y , 8, 4  Villages  of  Bengal  The  Indian (1957),  (Bombay:  27  30  A.F. R a p e r , R u r a l D e v e l o p m e n t i n A c t i o n : The C o m p r e h e n s i v e Experiment at C o m i l l a , East P a k i s t a n (Ithaca: Cornell U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1970).  31  Aminul Islam,  32  M. R a s h i d u z z a m a n , P o l i t i c s and A d m i n i s t r a t i o n i n t h e L o c a l C o u n c i l s : A Study of U n i o n and D i s t r i c t C o u n c i l s i n E a s t P a k i s t a n (Dacca: O x f o r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1966).  33  E. L. Tepper, C h a n g i n g P a t t e r n s of A d m i n i s t r a t i o n i n Rural East Pakistan (Asian Studies Center O c c a s i o n a l Paper No. 5, Michigan State U n i v e r s i t y , 1 9 6 6 ) , p. 128. See a l s o E. L. Tepper, R u r a l D e v e l o p m e n t and A d m i n i s t r a t i o n in East P a k i s t a n . (Unpublished Ph.D. D i s s e r t a t i o n , Duke U n i v e r s i t y , 1970).  34  A. T. R. Rahman, B a s i c Democracy a t t h e G r a s s R o o t s ( C o m i l l a : P a k i s t a n Academy f o r V i l l a g e D e v e l o p m e n t , 1 9 6 2 ) . Rehman S o b h a n , B a s i c D e m o c r a c i e s , Works Programme and R u r a l Development i n E a s t P a k i s t a n (Dacca: Oxford University P r e s s , 1968) .  35  N. K. N i c h o l s o n and D. A. R u r a l Development i n P a k i s t a n Committee, C o r n e l l U n i v e r s i t y ,  36  Najmul Abedin, L o c a l A d m i n i s t r a t i o n and P o l i t i c s i n M o d e r n i z i n g S o c i e t i e s : B a n g l a d e s h and P a k i s t a n (Dacca: N a t i o n a l I n s t i t u t e of P u b l i c A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , 1 9 7 3 ) .  37  M. Q. Village (August  38  Hamza A l a v i , " P e a s a n t C l a s s e s and Primordial Loyalties," J o u r n a l of Peasant S t u d i e s , 1 , 1 ( O c t o b e r 1 9 7 3 ) , p. 44.  39  The term i s used to d e s c r i b e v i l l a g e s which are l o c a t e d i n t h e p e r i p h e r y of u r b a n a r e a s . The v i l l a g e s and " t h e way i n w h i c h p e o p l e go a b o u t t h e i r b u s i n e s s a p p e a r s t o be fairly rural", but actually they are exposed to a c o n s i d e r a b l e d e g r e e of u r b a n i n f l u e n c e . See t h e I n t r o d u c t i o n i n A . H. Somjee, ed., P o l i t i c s of a P e r i u r b a n Community i n I n d i a (London: A s i a P u b l i s h i n g House, 1964), pp. 1-15.  Op.cit.  .  Khan, B a s i c D e m o c r a c i e s and (Ithaca: Rural Development 1974).  Zaman, " F a c t i o n a l i s m and i t s Impact on Self-Help Development i n B a n g l a d e s h , " A s i a n P r o f i l e , 10, 4 1982), pp. 395-405.  28  II.  LOCAL  GOVERNMENT  The with  history  instances  control  over  favour  of  rhetoric, steps  of  IN  of  BANGLADESH:  local  central  local  There  decentralization,  taken  to  by  appease  the  LEGACY  government  governments  bodies.  intended  THE  the  they  is replete their  announcements  turned  native  RULE  retaining  periodic  governments  COLONIAL  in Bangladesh  jealously  were  but  OF  out  population. resulted  to  be  The  in  in  mere  actual stronger  centralization. The a  area  which  long  period  British  Crown.  rule.  None  government lowest  of  the  undertaken  the  government  by  implemented  in  believed,  would  Acts,  of  the  full.  Rules  and  these  resulted  trend  continued  They  The  in small through  to  make  natives Another  control  plans  and  to  dealing in  Pakistani  There with the  probable  evident were  make  local  encourage  plans  local  not  that  to  nationalists, of  were the  never  British  institutions were  local  a  and  number  of  government,  but  existing  period,  the  complete  was  government  these  local  were  withhold  But  the  a u t h o r i t y to  bodies.  announced  and  for  Pakistani  following  foreign rule.  the  efforts  the  local  control  variations  Company  control  native  Resolutions  colonized  under  delegate  autonomous,  natives.  assume  r e s i s t a n c e to  to  reforming  British.  India  made  that  losing  tendency  was  continued  government  of  institutions  participation  organize  The  East  and  felt  local  fear  the  democratic  British  schemes  by  British  foreign rulers  The  various  Bangladesh  the  running  was  the  as  domination  decentralization. in  by  institutions  of  reason  time  known  Foreign of  levels.  capable  i s now  system.  when  This  government  29  officials After to  exercised  the  be  end of  the  foreign domination,  neglected.  government most  The  institutions  changes colonial  Bangladesh  Conscious e f f o r t s  masters, about lead route for after  later  p e r i o d of  in the free  interests  qualified  leaders In at  availability  the  of  local  of  local  remained,  and  resembled those  from  Urban p o l i t i c a l  days  of  development  even a f t e r elites  institutions  Pakistanis  at In  the  was an to  the  wanted  to  bring  system which  might  local rule,  local  rural  of of  areas  looking groups  supply  some  attempts  projects,  legacy  the  and  the  resulted  in  of  foreign  the c o u n t r y , were  of  government  level  the  safer  leaders  dominant  through l o c a l  departure  local  b o d i e s and  run  summary,  the  inadequate  Pakistani  secured c o n t r o l in  local  only  colonial  They p r e f e r r e d  of  the  as  in  time.  started  However,  traditionally there  system  p e r i o d of  and b e t t e r - o f f  resources  groups.  short  government  control the  later  government  rule.  country.  powerful  resources  among  local  nor t h e  the  of  and  rural  prevailed  government  continued  control  indigenous p r a c t i c e s  the excuse t h a t  efficiently.  rule  government  government  British  Withholding  on  competition  institutions.  officials  relatively  the B r i t i s h  changes  support.  a  reforming  a p p e a l i n g to the  made  local  local  retaining  through p u b l i c  over  t o movements t o  the  local  of  nation-wide  at  continued  were  a  neither  radical  of  over  days.  occurred  the  trend  suggested in  The g r o w t h of  during  increased control  colonial rulers. and  neglected.  local  29a MAP 1 .  BANGLADESH: ADMINISTRATIVE DISTRICTS  I nternationa!  boundary  Divisional  II  n  District  II  II  30  THE COUNTRY The p a r t as  of  Bangladesh  s t a t e of Bengal  delta  the  and  Asia.  in  large  hot,  numbers  of  since  the  culturally  annual the a r e a 1,675  persons of  and  Bangladesh August.  early of  social  an a r e a  rice  a little a family  the  the average mile.  alluvial rivers  heavy  temperature  2  is  Asia fish,  of  Muslim  centuries  share  much  especially  than  55,126  square  ninety  million  2.36 p e r  cent. of  country  numerous  during  is  the  Excluding is  composed by  the  tributaries.  June,  about e i g h t  and  population  criss-crossed  and t h e i r  high for  of  were f o r  density  monsoon r a i n s  words  repeated  persons  plain,  art  conversion  5.74  The  some  life.  less  is  is  Persian  and  therefore,  rural  and  T h e r e has been a  1  approximately  increase  square  vast  of  of  by  s i z e of  Brahmaputra  The  to  The B e n g a l i s  aspects  by w a t e r ,  receives  climate.  and  the  with southeast  Islam f o l l o w i n g  India,  of  architecture,  due  The  southwest  predominantly Hindu Indians —  per a  to  days.  population  covered  section  by A r a b i a n ,  similarity  known  years.  c l o t h i n g and many  influence  inhabited  r a t e of  the  has  presently  c r o s s - r o a d s of  tropical  the  The a v e r a g e  a  p e o p l e c o n s i s t i n g of  Bengalis  covers  is  principally Ganges  Asian  in  religious  It  humid,  the  Bangladesh  people.  "in  the  the  the  is  t h o u s a n d s of  has been a f f e c t e d  of  with  and  at  some of  population  with regard to  miles  of  southwest  invasions part  food,  diet  the  stronger  lies  vocabulary."  staple  for  has been e s t a b l i s h e d  The a r e a  ceremonial  land-mass which  inhabited  influences  Bengali  in the  been  that  Turkish  forms,  has  Bangladesh  southeast and  South A s i a ' s  July  months of  and the  31  year,  and t h e  r a n g e of  The s m a l l rainfall,  irrigation crops most  range  and  significance  the  and  season,  three  (the  upsets  jute are Crop  bhadoi  or  the  are  of  s u g a r - c a n e and o i l s e e d s a r e  the  crop  time  is  in  Bangladesh:  November-December),  (crops  summer,  from t h e  rabi  February-  belonging to  and t h e major  reflected  crucial  seasons  causing  to  direct  the  right  A deviation  balance  are Due  reaped in e a r l y  immediately a f f e c t e d  fluctuations  soil  seasonal  for  kharif 3  temperature,  of  c o l d weather, but  winter.  lack  the  There are  July-September).  rainfall  at  in  agriculture.  jute,  c r o p s sown i n w i n t e r  March),  of  rain  in the  alluvial  rice,  or h a i m a n t i c  small  variation  nature  which  is  fertile  facilities,  important.  (the  of  the  to  among  aqhani  variation  the  rainy  normal  seasonal  c r o p s of  paddy and  economic  in d i s t r e s s  difficulties.  in  the v a s t  rural  community. The number of per  cent  cent  in  rural  of  the p o p u l a t i o n of  1974." areas  urban r e s i d e n t s at  The m a j o r i t y  in v i l l a g e s ,  of  present  Bangladesh the  t o p o g r a p h y and c l i m a t e .  The f r e q u e n t  in  the  forced  settlements for  their  levees In  single  on  has  higher  homesteads.  form  other  season  In  some  to  raise  areas,  the  or c l u s t e r s pattern  linear of  tendency  to the  river  live land  there,  found  in areas  the  the  fields  in  rural  artificially  c a n be  "but  h o m e s t e a d s away from t h e m . " is  in  embankments  settlements  is  live  f l o o d i n g of  people  h i g h g r o u n d s and l i n e a r  areas,  settlement  g r o u n d or  still  per  have been i n f l u e n c e d by  the  rainy  fourteen  , compared t o n i n e  people  whose p a t t e r n s  comprise  The  and  found.  there  are  nucleated  i n h a b i t e d by t h e  tribal  32  people, early of  and s e m i - n u c l e a t e d settlements  homesteads  settlements  centered  are  rare.  around c u l t i v a b l e  gradually  developed  Most  5  land,  into  of  and  the  clusters  small  village  communities.  TRADITIONAL  PATTERN OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT  Since delta  prehistoric  attracted  different the has  6  the  However,  possible arrival  of  nature  lamented  Bengal.  settlers  parts  original  to of  Due t o  Asia, of  the  lack  the the  rural of  close  to  of  Sir the  that  rural  the  Bengal  races  from  available W.W.  rural  Hunter  history  do e x i s t Bengal  make  prior  soil  and  abundance  o c c u p a t i o n of  land that  the  was c u l t i v a t e d  the  the  h o m e s i t e s were s t r u n g o u t  in  long r i b b o n - l i k e v i l l a g e s  the  natural  dikes  the  efforts  of  annual  flood l e v e l .  around  excavated  housing  sites  difference  In  up by t h e to  other  ponds or  the  rivers.  areas,  tanks,  villages  fertile  raise  plains.  the  their  the  7  of  There  rain,  Generally, along  The d i k e s w o u l d homes  above  help the  h o m e s t e a d s were g r o u p e d  with a s e r i e s  making up a v i l l a g e .  from  it  resulted  in  settlers  of  settlers.  more and more s e t t l e m e n t s  the  to  of  in  thrown  on  subcontinent.  the  the  of  various  on  sources  became t h e p r e d o m i n a n t live  lands  community.  a picture  of  to  records  on t h e  nature  fertile  no o r g a n i z e d d a t a a r e  archaeological  British  the  belonging but  reconstruct  agriculture The need t o  times,  seemed  ancient  of  tank-centered to  India  be  little  d e s c r i b e d by  33  Alderfer.  "Population  thousand,  houses  tended to  built  almost  close  outside  world  custom,  community l e a d e r s h i p  village  self-sufficient, satisfying police,  tribunal,  managing  9  and an a s s e m b l y  of  P a l a s had t h e i r the  r e i g n of  but  in  the  the  affairs  own  as  government  of in  for  an  invaded  in  fishermen, According  the  this.  well  carpenters,  communities government  the  village  to  Mazumdar, continued  in  the  Villages  elders  the  a  functions, and  self-  headman  emerged.  the  The  area.  rulers'  had  such  washermen,  Raychaudhuri by t h e  and  conquerors and  into  more  as  of  weavers,  and  Dutta,  potters. "village  establishment  and p o o r  self-  mostly  T h e r e were a number of  were s e l f - c o n t a i n e d u n i t s  Hinduism  place.  consisting  blacksmiths,  During  1 1  century  evolved  groups  the  patronage,  Muslim  thirteenth  other  unaffected  t h e G u p t a s and  strong Brahmanical  communities  1 2  own e d u c a t i o n , and  Bengal-Bihar  settlements  country."  officers,  operated through a  the Mauryas,  early  as  "autonomous and  its  i m m i g r a t i o n by T u r k s , A r a b s and P e r s i a n s t o o k  as  by  1 0  years,  distinctions  agriculturists  a the  governed  independent  Buddhism r e c e i v e d  emphasizing caste  sufficient  from  elected  necessities  life  base  subsequent  Over c e n t u r i e s ,  to  a c o u n c i l of  own l i m i t s  its  villagers.  Palas,  Bengal  its  providing  kingdoms  power  hundred  isolation  hands of  economic  Village  ancient  the  by  own  the  village  within  its  its  governing u n i t . "  in  needs,  all  itself  The  was  own  five  8  governed  its  from  together,  complete,  and p e r h a p s a h e a d m a n . " Each  be  of  a new  reasons  for*  communication  34  and t r a n s p o r t a t i o n by t h e  capital  through these Maldah),  Muslim  the  years.  rulers  Hindu  protection collect  the c a p i t a l s rulers.  and  of  collect. affairs  Apart of  bodies  by t h e  village.  did  include other  the  administration  to the  social  or  rulers  close  among v i l l a g e  leaders,  commodities was  villages  for not  which to compete. organized  well  important aspect  r e l a t i o n s h i p between  the  and  Hinduism  periodic  Muslims. challenges  of  two major  from  had  immediate  to  to the  king sent  capital.  his  troops  interfere  in  transaction no  consider groups  s i z e of  in  to  informal emerge  communities, of  tangible  The a d m i n i s t r a t i v e  s y s t e m of  enough  rural  to  lack  for  necessary the  village  and ' t h e  the  demands  it  to  between  F a c t i o n a l i s m d i d not  and e s t a b l i s h a u n i f o r m l o c a l  Another  the  small  the  headman was e x p e c t e d  T h e r e were  occupational  the  government,  or  little  leaders  p r o b l e m due t o  independent  services  d i d not  T h e r e was  a s a major  called  their  and send i t  affairs.  (also  t o p r o v i d e any  headman, t h e the  (near  and Gaur  of  times  Pandua  the v a r i o u s  The v i l l a g e  village  t h a t managed l o c a l  ties  Dhaka),  problems in  outside world. the  changed s e v e r a l  centre  thus unable  from t h i s ,  and t h e  nor  under  from t h e v i l l a g e r s  the  village  change,  were  failure  Bengal (near  At  to the v i l l a g e s .  revenue  cases  Bengal  efficient  known as N a d i a ) ,  had t o pay a t t e n t i o n  surroundings,  of  Sonargaon  (also  s e r v e d as  and  rulers  of  Nuddeah  Lucknowty)  the  impeded  rulers.  The  In  facilities  cover  government life  in  the  system.  the area  r e l i g i o u s g r o u p s , the been t h e d o m i n a n t  Buddhism.  Since  remote  the  was  the  Hindus  faith  with  thirteenth  35  century,  large  scale  Muslim r u l e r s . castes. rural the  Bengal  high-caste  and M u s l i m s . yet.  Hindu  direct  market  were  l a n d l o r d s were  under  from  the  usually  The t e n a n t s  of  the  lower life  in  members  of  were b o t h H i n d u s  communal t e n s i o n had not become p r o m i n e n t  o c c u p a t i o n a l g r o u p s depended on one  services  for  survival.  consumption only  for  I s l a m took p l a c e  converts  community.  However,  or  of  to  p l u r a l i s m was a c c e p t e d as a f a c t  where t h e  The v a r i o u s  products for  The m a j o r i t y  Religious  East  conversions  agricultural  Production  and t h e r e  produce.  was no  was  home  another's essentially  or  external  1 3  VILLAGE SOCIETY UNDER MUGHAL RULE The Bengal  Mughals  only  Mughals  became a  set  up  administration further  conquered India province an  being  small c i t i e s . India, local  were  rulers  strategic.  the  fifteenth empire  and  various  These c e n t r e s  most d i s t i n c t i v e  government  were  percentage  isolated  administrative  from  of  the  in  changes d i d not  of  system  of  later  administration the  lived The  down t o  most  developed  an u r b a n in  into  people  the  sphere  effects  of  in of An  1  in v i l l a g e s  the  of  provinces  1  areas.  trickle  The  administration." '  the p o p u l a t i o n urban  1576.  grounds,  achievements  urban  but  in  units  The c e n t r e s  on  century,  efficient  The M u g h a l s were e s s e n t i a l l y  and " t h e i r  overwhelming  the  administrative  into d i s t r i c t s .  were d e c i d e d upon by t h e important  of  organized  by c r e a t i n g  divided  in  and urban  villages.  36  The  village  society danger  would of  was make  external  outlaws  which  Mughals  set  up  a  o f f i c i a l s  could  be  thus  performing pressure.  For  were and  a l l  the  councils,  composed  wealthy  answerable  in  the  and  the of  of  common  a c t i v i t i e s  village  bodies,  privilege  and  affairs  the  aimed the  to  of  keep  revenue,  and  the  any  to  effort  known  as  meaning  villagers  the  entire  village  of  lower  in  the  Panchayats  village  constituted  mostly  restricted  in  villages.  The  the  government  and  in  castes  exchange  on  enjoyed  five  and  castes  servants  farmers,  no  say  almost  a l l  basis  of  people  satisfied hand  in  1  6  Thus,  hereditary  to in  not  landless  practically  continued  were  were  supervised  free  local  higher  the  a  the  persons,  taxes.  centre  in  exercised  levied  influential the  had  feel  and  scope,  at  ruthless  bodies  small  revenue  was  of  to  officers  as  which  regulate  body  The  a  .  belonging  Village  village.  a  fees  to  control  panchayats  to  The  often  make  such  villages,  5  began  The  the  rights  villagers  purposes,  the  1  from  unity.  certain  were  the  several  from to  was  with to  c o l l e c t e d . "  panchayats.  members  affairs  claims  It  and  d i s t r i c t  village  security  system  either  from  l i t e r a l l y of  for  The  cultivators.  to  representative labourers  ,  the  income  not  The  decisions.  need  incentives  practical  panchayats  usually  from  duties.  own.  organization  revenue  direct  did  and  collecting  or  the  its  the  village  levels  from  of  laws  and  derived  state  village  The  own  revenue  had  their The  a f f a i r s . the  the  deducted  collectors  by  various  in  world  revenue  and  share  its  produced  at  fixed  small  invasion  o f f i c i a l s "these  a  manage  the  the  villages  by  raising  running  the  37  villages.  The g o v e r n m e n t ,  broaden the  b a s e of  Gradually, local  the  landlords  became w i l l i n g  the  completely  their  own  fashion  tension of  rebellion  and not  sporadic  studies,  there  become  a  details.  The  landlords  local for  villages  of  any  varied  in  to  and  the  landlords  the  emerged where t h e  the  in  efforts  estates  and the  of  in are  degree  local  exact  of  by  way  bodies. some  dates  and  were becoming more u s e f u l  local  and a new p a t t e r n  established  tyrannize  the  in  judicial  mentioned in  the  villages,  to  and were  c o u l d be o f f e r e d o n l y  record  controlling  their  police  rebellion  influentials  their  The  of  participation  relationships landlords  need  villagers  administer  monopoly  through  hardly  the  strained.  hand " t o  incidents  are  the  t h e c o n q u e r i n g Mughal power  free with  realise  between  e x p e r i e n c e d , and r e s i s t a n c e  Although  the  of  not  bodies.  to  Individual  1 7  did  relationship  partisans  a  functions."  local  started  given  too,  leaders  to of  aided  village.  INNOVATION UNDER BRITISH COLONIAL RULE The  British  t h e Mughal p e r i o d , When  r u l e d the  area  c o n s i s t i n g of  paying  only a small  The l o c a l acquired  rulers land  and  trading  and u l t i m a t e l y  rulers.  chiefs  the  commenced  British  were  wealth  established  came t o East tribute  mostly to  operations  India,  Bengal to  the  in  India  themselves hereditary  as  during as  the  noblemen  semi-independent  British  Hindus  who  had  become  powerful.  government. inherited T h e r e was  or no  38  e m i g r a t i o n and livelihood.  The  landlords, reduced could  the be  moved  at  the  to  landlord. new  The areas  and  the  famine  In  1787, t h e  area.  By  the  the  government  back  was  full  days  or  cheaper  t o win  the  the  land  of  f u n d s by t h e  set  were  up by t h e  works.  which  were  to  by t h e  agents  of  the  government.  1 9  them In  Bengal,  to  indebtedness cultivators  resulted  in  to  non-resident  these  estates.  relinquish  their  remained u n t i l l e d . i n Lower  law  Thus  Bengal.  administration  and o r d e r in  in  the  bringing  1 8  rule,  t o be s p e n t  and o t h e r  due  them o v e r  the  term  bodies,  government  slum c l e a r a n c e s ,  resident  for  order.  roads,  delegated  The  successful  colonial  than  The need  breakdown of  government  1770  land.  undertook d i r e c t  working  the  of  either  old aristocracy  they  of  a  agricultural  vagrant  used to denote a d m i n i s t r a t i v e  c o m m i t t e e s a p p o i n t e d or awarded  of  the  1788,  early  estate  compelled  government  to  The  c o n f u s i o n to acquire  were  following  end of  administration In  the  r u i n e d many of  Lower B e n g a l ,  famine  l a n d e d p r o p r i e t o r s and t h e  section  British  The  earning power  homes or by r e a s o n of  s e a r c h of  classes  a large  the  two g r o u p s .  same  and t h e a t t e m p t s  of  of  and t h e r e was more l a n d  non-resident in  to  peasants.  the  ancient  way  victims  oppression.  the  on  f e u d s among t h e  The a g r i c u l t u r a l  only  time c o n s i s t e d of  group took advantage  of  by  their  more c u l t i v a t o r s  land,  fell  rural  continued  into  violent  the  population d r a s t i c a l l y  cultivators  their  in  cultivated  attachment  was  peasantry  resulting  population  to  agriculture  .  boards, They  on t h e p o o r ,  They e x e r c i s e d government lack  of  local and were and on powers  and a c t e d  as  communication  39  facilities  and  compelled  the  villagers  administrative to  the  inaccessibility  units.  f o r m u l a t i o n of  elderly  and  of  to  the  central  organize  themselves  T r a d i t i o n and l o c a l laws and v i l l a g e  respected  government  customs  into  contributed  b o d i e s c o n s i s t i n g of  villagers  looked  after  the their  implementat i o n . Meanwhile, institutions response  of  in  the  election four  out  city'.  2 0  British  India  areas,  Company  was  could  Presidency  in  i n t r o d u c e d , and i t  of  seven  of  too,  body was In  provided  'commissioners  government a very  mild  until  the  not  Crown from  development  said  1726.  The m u n i c i p a l government  was British  the  be  local  received  It  by t h e  that  A municipal  for  local  to  have begun on  set  up  for  the  Calcutta  1847, t h e  principle  of  for  election  of  the  started  of  the  the  improvement  levying  taxes  of in  the the  area. the  advent  government  activities,  important  task  purposes, through  the a  of  group  permanent  of of  landlords.  1793, u n d e r w h i c h permanent  of  British  revenue  the  British  Governor G e n e r a l  by  growth  government.  institutions  Bengal  With  in  for  urban  subcontinent.  the  urban  demands  Indian a d m i n i s t r a t i o n  East  government Indian  in  from t h e  takeover British  the  was  in  in  the  He i n t r o d u c e d t h e the  annual  settlement.  rural to  Lord favour  the  seemed t o  convenient  landlords.  India,  and  settlement  government  found i t  rule  e x p a n s i o n of be t h e  areas.  of  creating  Permanent  settlement  The z a m i n d a r s  of  For  collect  Cornwallis,  most such  revenues the  then  a class  of  Settlement  Act  l a n d s was  (land holders)  replaced made a  40  transition  from  landlords. and t h e  They  the  tax-collectors  of  law  t o pay  The r e l a t i o n s h i p B e n g a l became t h a t  of  the  reduced  to  landless  started  to  create  groups.  The l a n d l o r d s of  of  villagers.  the  "was  the  government for  the  social  first  with the Mayo,  step  administer  local  administrative  in  some of  to  The  East  s i n c e most of  the  secure  land,  for  to  of  added t o  cheapest  its  a  bigger  the  misery  rule."  Bengal  with  The  2 1  and s a f e s t  collection  being  religious  throughout  landlord  in  colonialism  themselves  society  the  gradually  two major  and t h i s  village  and  was  the  r e s p o n s i b l e government  in  streamlining  local  Lord Mayo's recognized  affairs.  2 3  started  agency minimum  the  t o be v o i c e d ,  administration  resolution  He c a l l e d  for  process.  in  ability  for  the  associating  of  in  Indians  departments.  respect It  to p u b l i c  was  was  taken  1870.  Lord  Indians  decentralization  Mayo wanted t o e x t e n d t h e  institutions  the c i v i l  abilities  in  impact  among  landlords  and  government  tasks  2 2  Viceroy,  administration,  local  tried  ruled  peasantry  labourers.  p u b l i c a t i o n of the  general  revenue  As demands f o r the  the  the  disturbance.  revenue  The  needs and  of  r i c h H i n d u s were e n t r e n c h e d  permanently  of  of  in the v i l l a g e s .  and t h e  While the  Gradually,  found in  security  ruler  from t h e  subordinated  collection  d i s r e g a r d to the  antagonism  return  position  between t h e H i n d u s and t h e M u s l i m s  positions,  share  the  taxes.  l a n d l o r d s were H i n d u s . dominating  and o r d e r  out w i t h t o t a l  villagers  to  were e n t r u s t e d w i t h t h e  maintenance  were c a r r i e d of  being  also  to of  in  the  authority  of  expenditure intended  to  41  increase  local  interest  and s u p e r v i s i o n .  Ripon c o n s i d e r e d l o c a l and  government  popular education",  the  local  up  of  bodies.  rural  His  famous R e s o l u t i o n  boards with a two-thirds  accordingly  government  from t h e  provincial  into  five-member  or  residents  not  undertake  Magistrate  any  the  in  administrators local  reported that the  other  not  to  all  local  his  the p a n c h a y a t s the  .  sentiments  But  of  the  decentralized  ten  to  for  choice. this  i n c l u s i o n of  rural twelve  form  from  the  could  arrangement  each v i l l a g e by  the  the  p e o p l e of  of  in  the  District  Many v i l l a g e s way,  a  appointed a  panchayats  This  appointed  In  The  2  c o l l e c t e d money  work.  own  boards  possible." "  The p a n c h a y a t  and  were  to  setting  was empowered t o  beneficial  panchayats  District  chowkidari  province.  areas  was  the  1870 , d i v i d e d t h e  services.  development  function  went  colonial  their  choice  bodies.  The B e n g a l  in  his  political  districts.  Act,  Magistrate  Lord  non-officials,  began t o be  the  each u n i o n .  for  ensured  the  for  covering approximately  policeman  according  unrepresented  in the  for  t o pay  a p p o i n t i n g panchayats since  Chowkidari  village  to  to  of  of  of  of  whenever  and a u t h o r i t y  The D i s t r i c t  local  union  responding  each  panchayat  majority  non-officials  Village  called  chairmen  headquarters  unions,  square m i l e s .  chowkidar  be  residents  The B e n g a l areas  "The  was a c t u a l l y  e d u c a t e d urban  "instrument  and a d v o c a t e d d e v o l u t i o n  who were t o be e l e c t e d . should  as an  The n e x t V i c e r o y ,  of  India,  A d m i n i s t r a t i o n Committee, panchayats  But "for  they  were e s t a b l i s h e d  were d i f f e r e n t  in Bengal  1913-1914  the  everywhere  from p a n c h a y a t s  Permanent  in  Settlement  42  and as  the  predominating  other  contributory  improved  a l l  to  traces  British  which  also  pointed  2  into  The  5  They  tax  not In  with and  1885, for  a  the  union  were  elected  the  construction  f a c i l i t i e s . occupying  houses  order  in  popularity  due  "raise  or  to  collecting  funds  members  were  too,  union.  the  Act  The  by  the  nature and  corrupt  villagers.  been  collecting  the was  and  village  .  legislated  to  of  the  Committee.  The  separately and  its  from members  supervised  primary  education owning  or  programmes.  maintaining  were  of  the  salaries,  these for  of  had  villagers  funds  of  communal  parts  Committee  panchayats  the  or  and  Union  and  pre-  villages  consisting  finance  raised  inefficient  elected  Union  to  of  useful  villages,  from  unpleasant  and not  funds  unit  bonds  in  destroy  the  number  operating  sanitation  properties"  panchayats the  and  the  few  The  to  panchayats  and  a  education,  in  chowkidar's  level,  covered  roads,  could  by  programmes  Board  lowest  a  well  existed  that  organization  villagers.  of  but  as  ever-increasing  assessing  the  local  ,  out  Self-Government  Local  the  the  It  chowkidari  who  tier  panchayats by  of  the  have  become  of  of  combined  may  the  task  Local  the at  to  because  the  and  united  developmental  three  Committee  not  landlords,  spread  have  village,  failed  payment  the  Board,  control,  the  "though  had  undertake  D i s t r i c t  and  not  administration  chowkidari  The  Report  unions,  only  Union  village  was  entrusted  provide  communication,  system  any  the  the  of  interest."  could  as  of  days."  d i s t r i c t  of  such  of  centralization  administration grouped  influence  causes,  f a c i l i t i e s  tendency  local  quickly  their  law  losing  duties  practices  2 6  by  in the  43  The evident the  shortcomings  t o the government  Bengal  the  Village  appointment recommend  actual  appointing  of  1892 was  government  was  made  authority.  2  the  reverse  Now  with  urban  1870.  panchayats  Magistrate the  police.  2  Thus,  7  to introduce and to  local  self-  "the v i l l a g e district village's  of the  p r e s s u r e p u t by more  and a l s o  t o the apathy  the local  the  the interests  the  in  the  attributed  was  chowkidars  centralization  and subservient  the p o l i t i c a l  residents  The  the d i s t r i c t ,  Mukherjee  t o amend  The p r o c e d u r e f o r  over  regular  towards  from  i n 1892  revised.  the attempt  started  of c o l o n i a l society  the poorer agents  of  pointed  out that  rejected formation  by  an a t t e m p t  committees  the  nationalism  decentralization.  were  East had  become  landlord,  was more  of  rulers  vocal the  made  h a d made  By  and  rural  from  real  but  State Congress  the B r i t i s h  of the  helpless, government  power.  by t h e B e n g a l  of  conditions  the turn  officials  effective,  National  i n the  absolutely  wielded  Secretary  Indian  obvious  Bengal.  moneylenders  the B r i t i s h of  in  the  and the l o c a l  village  rule  villagers  service  Indian  step  t o , among' o t h e r c a u s e s ,  rural  the  make  was  the p r o v i n c i a l  Subrata  effects  century, and  of  became  9  The of  a  2 8  combination  conscious  Act  panchayats  passed  The .control  c o m p l e t e l y dependent  subservience  people.  to  i n Bengal  authorities."  in  a n d a n A c t was  Chowkidari  authority.  government  chowkidari  candidates, but the D i s t r i c t  transferred  Act  the  of the chowkidars  could  was  of  3 0  Tinker  government the  for  plan  was  India.  The  and the growth  apprehensive  of  to  of  total  44  Another East a  Bengal  was  cohesive  League  development the  (ML).  The  background  due  articulate  their  pressed  for  East  perceived  to  who  in  t h e M u s l i m community  force  Muslims  the  out  continued  to  provincial  the  the  Union Committees. to experiment  in  the  of  into  East  area,  was  the Hindu h i g h e r  The  Hindus  started  and s u c c e e d e d i n g e t t i n g in  first  1906,  time  The  and  to c r e a t e  a  it  communal  between  tension  followed  to  the  two  survived,  and  in  policy  public  of  divide  cleavage  between  the  J o h n McLane has a c c u s e d t h e  British  of  institutions  which  ensured  C o m m i s s i o n was c o n s t i t u t e d  and  the  3 1  relationship  But  Bengal  demand more p a r t i c i p a t i o n  politics."  panchayat  of  control  between  g o v e r n m e n t s and t h e a u t h o r i t i e s  elected  Muslim  successfully  majority  scene.  year.  The C o m m i s s i o n made a number of an  Muslim  formed  Bengal  and  The D e c e n t r a l i z a t i o n into  province  of  government  and p a r t i t i o n e d  communalization of  enquire  was  following  "issues  the  to  into  and an o r g a n i z a t i o n  of  a  the  left  1905, demands were  partition,  for  been  In  local  The ML  significance  o r g a n i z a t i o n of  education  out  the  the  the  previously  being  H i n d u s and t h e M u s l i m s . providing  of  slipping  The c o l o n i a l  rule,  had  lack  Bengal, be  in  under  partition  1911.  communities  and  of  interests.  broke  affairs.  transformation  to  against  violence  the  particular  dominated  agitating annulled  of  Muslims  the  and W e s t .  castes  was  political  that  the  the c o l o n i a l  of  to  central  and  the  to  which  was not  with delegated  them.  included  the panchayat  government  with e l e c t e d panchayats  1907  subordinate  recommendations  t h e merger  in  and  yet  the  ready  authority.  45  The s u g g e s t i o n s were not for  a further  ten  A committee observed that the  tasks  implemented, a n d ' r e f o r m s  years.  3 2  a p p o i n t e d by  the  local  a s s i g n e d to  the  bodies them.  in  neither  According knowledge  committee as  officials  the committee Commission, were s t i l l  a l t h o u g h they  Lord  due  to  to delegate  the  bodies.  in  increased  The  to  make  Montagu-Chelmsford should  be  jurisdiction  in petty  cases,  of  sanitation  imposing l o c a l  and  endowed  The  districts  extremely  poor  government  absence  of  The r e c o m m e n d a t i o n s the  The c o l o n i a l  power  the  to  local  intention of  advocated  the  for  with  bodies,  India  elected in  suggested civil  some a d m i n i s t r a t i v e  rulers  g r o w t h of  them t h e m a j o r i t y Report  of  t o do s o .  State  The number of  an  Decentralization  ignored.  education,  Local  members had  Bengal  the  of  Secretary  India.  panchayats  field  3 3  expressed t h e i r  Viceroy,  institutions be  those  similarly  repeatedly  Chelmsford,  system.  perform  the  between  and  1912  affairs.  to  distance  population,  1918 Edwin M o n t a g u , t h e  governing was  administer  to  East  to  of  Boards'  in v i l l a g e  to  government  not w i l l i n g  the  in  Administration  existence  of  local  were  the  peculiarity  the  failed  District  the  were s i m i l a r and  for  interest  facilities,  village  government  the p r o v i n c e  Committee,  nor any  out  and t h e  organized  the  difficult  communication  In  of,  pointed  t h e most  to  Bengal  The B e n g a l  Committee f o u n d no j u s t i f i c a t i o n Boards.  were p o s t p o n e d  self-  members the  local  that  the  and  criminal  powers  and p e r m i s s i v e  and  in  the  powers  of  rates. " 3  The M o n t a g u - C h e l m s f o r d R e p o r t  ushered  the  Bengal  Village  46  Self-Government  Act  of  1919.  The  panchayats  C o m m i t t e e s were merged and named t h e U n i o n Board  covered  an a r e a  of  approximately  p o p u l a t i o n of  about  8,000.  Union  were  nominated,  Board  government  .  abolition  of  bodies.  made  a  n o m i n a t i o n was experienced  the of  "the  some c h a n g e s  Hindu control  of  elections." politics.  3 7  place,  This  as a l o c a l  Boards service  to  was  cess,  the  Union Boards  the D i s t r i c t officials  to  oversee  was  over  impeded  local  (Rowlands  the  of  East  Bengal  local  bodies  alliances  with  the Hindu b h a d r a l o k ' s  loss  at  1931  the  on t h e  the  1927  in  local  and  and communal  upper c a s t e these  and the these "where  Hindus.  developments  eligibility  of  from s i x  annually  test.  to nine  appointment  o p e r a t i o n of bodies. the  The  3 8  in  The s u b o r d i n a t i o n of the  took  voters.  p a y i n g one r u p e e  varied  the p r o v i n c e . Boards  the  practice  and t o t h o s e who p a s s e d a l i t e r a c y  of  the  t h e H i n d u s and the M u s l i m s were  granted to v i l l a g e r s  villages  panchayats  of  stipulations  e n s u r e d government c o n t r o l the  boards  of  the  Committee  o r g a n i z a t i o n and in  the  recommended  Meanwhile,  the p e r i o d s d u r i n g which were  t h e members or  c o m p o s i t i o n of  t h e d o m i n a t i o n of  number of members of different  section  with a  and  r e v e a l s a new d i m e n s i o n  resisting  The f r a n c h i s e  Enquiry  1946.  the  local  The p o o r e r  there  in  square m i l e s  n o m i n a t i n g members t o  had r e s u l t e d  many  Throughout  in  new e l e c t o r a l  peasantry  of  suggestion,  terminated  Muslims'  together  of  similar  Union  Commission  The B e n g a l A d m i n i s t r a t i v e  3 6  Report)  as  practice  The  thus e n s u r i n g the c o n t r o l  The I n d i a n S t a t u t o r y the  Union  Boards.  ten  Only a t h i r d  3 5  and  the  Union  of  civil  village  bodies  The o p e r a t i o n  community was  rent  of by  47  faction local  or  family  bully  extremely  hard  combination." less  successful villages  to  the  advantages  Tinker  p o i n t e d out  in  provinces,  setting  in  local  Ramkrishna M u k h e r j e e ' s the m i s e r a b l e  people  of  landholders, agricultural others.  differences  survey  Bengal  labourers, these  of  the  "virus  of  faction"  improve The  life  concept  in  way  the  in which  villages  rural  establishment  of  a Department  the  famine of  1878.  to  be  for  affected there  areas. was  an  the  was  of  The d e p a r t m e n t agriculture  more Yet  the  directed  by  traditional  agents  the  government.  of  extremely in  low  1941  attests  occupational  sharecroppers,  service-holders, there of  the  government  originated  Agriculture  were  p u r p o s e was t o relief  research  4 0  sought  with  to  the  following  up an  materials  expanded g r a d u a l l y ,  large  development.  1880, set  and  population  in Bengal in  the  groups:  income g r o u p s .  British  of  limited.  He c l a s s i f i e d  nine-tenths  college,  be  government.  in poverty;  distribution  affairs.  to  to emphasize r u r a l  development  The i n i t i a l the  appeared  traders,  groups l i v e d  of  used  in municipal  cultivators,  s u r v e y e d were c o n c e n t r a t e d among t h e An a l t e r n a t e  than  villagers.  farmers,  i n c o m e , and a b o u t  dull  that  nine  artisans,  a  communal  some v i l l a g e s  into  find  work  of  remained  the  had t o  forms  and  of  some  new  Bengal  affairs  supervisory  Most o f  usually  by  of  with the  c o n d i t i o n of  rural  villagers  up and r u n n i n g l o c a l  in c o l l a b o r a t i o n  Participation  overshadowed  would  c o n t i n u e d to c o n t r o l l e d  influentials  to  "one  the Union Boards  other in  was  where the  a living,  3 9  to  areas  for  active  Compared  or when i t  In  indifference  was  feuds,  office in  and by  stations,  the 1911 and  48  training  centres  Department  for  officers  and  of  Agriculture  aimed  r e s e a r c h among  cultivators  and  Meanwhile, credit  village  cooperatives  required  for  bulk  of  its  most  partition challenge Initially,  1947.  of  The c o l o n i a l  legacy The  was  of  and  local  Bengal.  The  and t h e r e  were no demands from  local of  euphoria  government  Hindu  alternate years.  landlords Muslim  jealousy  among  pursuit  Industrial  one  of  the  supply  But was  staff.""  of  relief.  1904 t o  c o l o n i a l i s m in of  Pakistan  building to  up  reorganize  government  little  "spending  1  India  But felt  the  the  new  the  local  for  void created  in  leadership  the  aspirants.  its  rural  the  state.  government  continued  people  was  presented  East  some  time  reforming  the  for  by t h e  departure  areas,  because  had not d e v e l o p e d o v e r to  take  Local  advantage  Their  .  in  independence p r e v a i l e d  t o assume l e a d e r s h i p .  other  competing a g a i n s t  famine  Department  Some o p p o r t u n i s t s were q u i c k and t r i e d  and  was  local  situation  In  of  system.  of  birth  no a t t e m p t  system  results  development.  the  The  RULE  organizing  there  organize  were o r g a n i z e d i n  1940,  visible  in  to  farms.  disseminate  fund f o r m a i n t a i n i n g  REFORMS UNDER PAKISTANI The  to  agricultural  p r o g r e s s was made and by (the)  district  success  leaders  thus  of  the the  aroused started  another.  rural  development,  Development  (V-AID)  the  Village  programme was  Agricultural introduced  in  49  1954  with  the  participation cover  objective  i n development  agriculture,  and s a n i t a t i o n , reclamation  of  primary  land,  effective  activities.  education,  cooperatives,  of  fostering  secondary  women's programmes and s o c i a l  V-AID was e x p e c t e d  adult  cottage  citizen  education,  industries,  road  to  health  irrigation  and  c o n s t r u c t i o n , youth  and  and r e c r e a t i o n a l  activities.  " T h e b a s i c a s s u m p t i o n was t h a t by h e l p i n g v i l l a g e r s a c q u i r e g r e a t e r c o n f i d e n c e i n t h e m s e l v e s and t h e i r government s e r v a n t s , p r e c i s i o n i n u s i n g s c i e n t i f i c m e t h o d s , c o m p e t e n c e i n u s i n g c o - o p e r a t i v e methods of d i s c u s s i o n and a c t i o n and s k i l l i n r e s o l v i n g s o c i a l c o n f l i c t , t h e i r d e v e l o p m e n t e f f o r t s would be e n h a n c e d and e x i s t i n g c o n d i t i o n s of a p a t h y , o v e r d e p e n d e n c e on a u t h o r i t y , f e a r of change and f a c t i o n a l i s m c o u l d be overcome."" 2  Azer A l i that to  u s e d one c a s e  in R a j b a r i ,  t h e V-AID programme r e s u l t e d improve  "shortage  their of  instability causes prepare  for  In started  funds, of  the  the  organization May  living  slow  for it  1959, t h e  training  departments  contributed  administration and  of  Centre,  Cooperative.  in  in  Rural  the  and  Akhtar  that  and  the main  V-AID  developmental  Village and The  Development  development  a  local  only  1962.  development.  in Comilla d i s t r i c t  Development  Comilla  to  stated  g o v e r n m e n t s were t h e  P a k i s t a n Academy f o r  d e a l i n g with r u r a l  also  villagers  facilities  growth  was t e r m i n a t e d  officers  demonstrate  The V-AID programme c o u l d  3  later  renamed P a k i s t a n Academy f o r Academy  He  training  and c e n t r a l  progress."*  ground before  of  to  " e n t h u s i a s m among  conditions."  lack  provincial  in  Faridpur  of  Development  the  government  institution  was  in  The  a  1962. model  through  the  Thana  two-tier  cooperative  Hameed K h a n , a f o r m e r c i v i l  thana  Training known  as  servant  50  and c o l l e g e  professor,  was  which  based  certain  was  since  the  villagers  p r o b l e m s of from  rural  their  provided  be  w i t h the  local  measures The  the  solve  successful provide rural the  country  definitely and  conditions  Comilla  the  change  Politically,  be  change should  process  of  enthusiasts,  of  change  introduce  this in  In  exercise  than  innovative  advantage,  but  the  The C o m i l l a m o d e l , limited  for  of  replication  limited.  was the  not  rural  Rural  did  there  areas.  Most  landless it  It in  in other  gained  did  areas  their to  not  Comilla's  institutions  sufficient  of  seems, c o u l d be  change  educating  not  governmental  projects.  significant  its  it  Comilla, of  rural  formula  East  should  model  the  particular  prevailing  of  the  in  therefore,  But  capable  p r o c e s s of  agents  be i m p r o v e d by h e l p i n g and  clients.  are and  for  the  approached  The v i l l a g e  problems.  in  took  The p r o s p e c t was,  that  be  has been c r i t i c i z e d b e c a u s e  benefit. in  was  problems.  changes  a guaranteed  areas.  the  t o many l o c a l  farmers  the  efforts.  and c o u l d be u s e d t o  model  only  villagers  point  model  u n d e r s t a n d i n g of  should  initiate  effective  and no l a n d t e n u r e  in direct  to  Comilla  The f i r s t  conditions,  starting  more  local  radical  better-off  little  were  solutions  authority  their  A c c o r d i n g to  u  Comilla  no  the  officials  to  Second,  and c o o p e r a t i v e  as  leaders  government  view. in  the  best  development  opportunity  individual  modernization.*  were  of  had t h e  rural  changes  recognized  produce  life,  of  assumptions.  themselves  point  b r i n g i n g about  through  on  the a r c h i t e c t  of  could  members  improve  the  areas.  B e n g a l underwent  numerous  changes  after  51  1947.  Opposition  factions word  together  "Muslim"  (AL)  to to  was  the  deleted  needs and demands.  The  East  Bengal.  Fazlul and  party's  KSP,  alliance 1954.  The  regional  remote a r e a s after  of  Fazlul  traditional  Krishak  1947  East  of  the  Bengal,  Huq  big  found  d o m i n a t i o n of  farmers the  AL  a  stronger  and b r o a d e r  base  1956,  first  province  same  year,  the  local  government  vehicle  were  democratized  parties,  for  the  the  for  government  the  of  in  in  the  fading  While to  of  the  t h e ML,  the  a  partition  to c h a l l e n g e time,  the the  c o n t r i b u t e d to a  AL.  Bengal  of  Pakistan  to East  undertook a study Although  by a d o p t i n g u n i v e r s a l  bodies continued to perform very  held  KSP was  allegiance  Pakistan  constitution  province.  f o r m e d an  AL  service.  w i t h which  AL  articulation  W i t h t h e p a s s a g e of  government  The  elections  since  government  from E a s t  i n the  base  in  A.K.M.  areas.  who had p r o s p e r e d a f t e r  national  the  the  Maulana  l e d by  ML and t h e  especially  t h e ML s u p p o r t e r s .  the  rural  smaller  continued their  of  the  the  League  Bengalis'  included  (KSP)  provincial  laid  joined  policies  name of  in  the  the  gained p o p u l a r i t y  Party  ruling  autonomy  Later,  a l s o c o n s i d e r e d as a  leaders  Sramik  following  influentials  new g r o u p of  In  other  leader  a l o n g w i t h a number of  defeat  b r o u g h t many  name, and t h e Awami  leadership  and r o u t e d the ML i n t h e  demands f o r  of  The  t h e ML,  spokesman f o r  a peasant  Gradually,  Huq had a m a s s i v e  the  from t h e  principal  A b d u l Hamid Khan B h a s h a n i , leader.  party,  form t h e Awami M u s l i m L e a g u e .  went on t o become t h e  religious  ruling  poorly.  changed  Pakistan. of  the  t h e p r o b l e m s of  the  adult  In  the  Union  Boards  franchise,  The r e a s o n s  were  local the  52  inclusion little  of  inefficient  people,  often  through patronage,  s c o p e t o p e r f o r m , and t o o much c o n t r o l  government."  Independence  5  to a p r o v i n c e performance  of of  an  h e l p of  October,  bodies.  Law  the  drawn  up  was  military a  government nomenclature ostensibly  for  Basic  the D i s t r i c t  growth tiers:  Council,  The U n i o n C o u n c i l was t h e number  of  and  residents who was  of  the  all the chief  general national  for  the  local  of  the  with  unit  government  union.  the the  and  .  to  was  in  civic,  of  the  a  local  under  which  democracy.  Basic  the  Thana  Council.  the v i l l a g e s .  run  by  It  a  body of  the  members  1962, t h e p r o c e d u r e for  the  f i v e y e a r s by its  was the  Chairman,  body.  entrusted police  with  list  of  revenue  and  tasks  related  to  development,  judicial  and  and  f u n c t i o n s as w e l l  reconstruction,  Within  1959  o n e - t h i r d of  From  in  of  government  closest  time  Ayub Khan had  The U n i o n C o u n c i l e l e c t e d  executive  administrative  first  system  local  t h e members were e l e c t e d  including  the  the Union C o u n c i l ,  Initially,  The U n i o n C o u n c i l s were functions  interests  and t h e D i v i s i o n a l  villages,  t e n members.  were n o m i n a t e d by t h e changed  on  c o n t r o l l e d by  Democracy was e s t a b l i s h e d  four  approximately  effect  headed by G e n e r a l  A s y s t e m of  Democracy c o n s i s t e d of  a  the  from a c o l o n y  breakdown.  reorganizing  the  covered  own  a constitutional  encouraged  Council,  their  imposed on P a k i s t a n  Pakistan.  of  no  They were s t i l l  government  scheme in  had  by  officials.  1958 f o l l o w i n g  year,  transformation  state  who f u r t h e r e d  government  Martial  independent  local  wealthy v i l l a g e r s  and t h e  exercised  with  agricultural  a  long  security, as  53  political of  activities."  these  functions  e x e r c i s e d over Councils. of  the  However,  6  could  the v i l l a g e s  The government  for  not  Council  authority enabled  which  was  vested  and  the  elect  most  Control  Chairman.  its  with  the  In  Chairman, the  the  a Chairman.  s u p e r c e d e d by t h e  decisions  performed.  c o n t r o l l e d and c o n d u c t e d t h e  to  them t o a p p o i n t  s u s p e n d e d or policy  failed  be  reasons,  and t h e U n i o n C o u n c i l s by t h e  U n i o n C o u n c i l members and  Union  a number of  was Thana  election case  the  controlling  government  officials,  The U n i o n C o u n c i l c o u l d be  government  conduct  which a l s o  of  controlled  business,  directly  or  indi rectly. The Thana l e v e l  officers  c o n s t i t u t e d a Thana C o u n c i l of  government  dominance of deference resulted were  officers  the  to  arrangement. ordinary  Democracy  decentralization when  government the all  any c a s e ,  the  the  efforts  representatives.  in  these  positions  keep t h e  Councils  to c o o r d i n a t e  people's  by  Union  the  by  bodies, the  was  the  leaders  Concessions  Chairmen s a t i s f i e d  result  and  local  officials.  The  with  this  benefit  for  f a g end of  the  little  villagers.  Basic  1960s,  to  C h a i r m e n of  officials  control  made  In  and  superior  in e f f e c t i v e  sometimes  in order  government  their  and t h e  Basic  wave of  control  in Pakistan Democracy  issues  communications  on  was  i n t r o d u c e d toward  the  over  1950s,  and o p e r a t e d t h r o u g h o u t  local  operations  was v e r y  tight.  system r e v e a l e d local  from t h e  the  council central  that  by  Rahman's  the  agendas  government."  were 7  central  examination  eighty-five put  "The  the  per cent there  of of by  overbearing  54  intervention  of  the p r i n c i p a l Huque  the  the  National audit  u s u r p i n g of  Basic  interviewed by up  for  over  Rs.  for  areas.  becomes  the  intention  General  of  the  of  clear  Khan  Basic  became  clear  loyalty  since  that the  61.1  in  which  the  Basic  presidential  O p p o s i t i o n P a r t i e s p o l l e d about in East A  Pakistan. number  the c o u n t r y ,  dealing  by  to e l e c t  the  cent  of  in  1961  of  Rs.  the  for more  1000 p e r  same  Thus a new  5 0  proper  C h a i r m e n who were  t h e Ayub r e g i m e  the  franchise  group  opportunity  in  the  rural  s y s t e m was e s t a b l i s h e d  with  s u p p o r t e r s who  help  power.  This  found t h a t under  the  the  would  explanation Ayub  g u i s e of  elections  regime grants of  D e m o c r a t s were d i v i d e d candidate  put  forty-five  up by t h e  per cent  of  is was  to  the  1965,  it  in  their  Combined the  votes  5 2  of  rural  d u r i n g t h e Ayub r e g i m e . of  per  presidential  the  while  8  Basic  have been u s e d  Council  a g r o u p of  Democrats  after  may  of  lack  Khan e a r n e d a b o u t  that  stay  bribing  But  Union  s u p p o r t e r s of  by a s t u d y  5 1  which  of  the  one of  by H u q u e . "  college  and  4000 p e r a n n u m .  substantiated  councils.  right  showed t h a t  by M.R.  creating  Ayub  the  the  income of  was p r o v i d e d It  funds  is  criticism  an e l e c t o r a l  President,  affairs"  raised  further  people's  A survey  9  a study  1964, the to  as  the  council  bribery.""  government  B a s i c Democracy  Democrats  three-quarters  shot  of  local  mentioned,  local  "political  annum,  in  A s s e m b l y and t h e  of  than  criticisms also  Democracy, making  officials  they  development Since they  will  with Bangladesh  .  be  programmes were  continued after  reviewed  A l t h o u g h the  in  the  government  launched  the  break-up  next  chapter  continued  to  55  shower the  praise  g o a l s of  democracy, d i d not  it  5 3  in  political  role  control  of  the  projects  were made a t  villages  rarely  the  farmers,  and  the  majority  of  village  labourers  -- were s t i l l  and  in  more  government  in  businessmen  residents  —  it  power the  importance functions. of  5 5  local  be n e g l e c t e d .  Funds  the  Decisions  The  rise  because  level  villages.  and programmes t h a t  a  political  Gradually,  lowest  down t o  achieving  government  assumed  c o n t i n u e d to  as  equality  5  were u n d e r t a k e n .  such  was  manner." "  local  were  trickled  resulted  moneyed c l a s s e s  and  Union l e v e l ,  influentials  said,  people over  Democrats  Councils  the  social  limited  Basic  it  be c o n s i d e r e d d e m o c r a t i c  by t h e  extremely  Union  institutions,  local  not  administrative  the  local  could  an  their  Since  Democracy w h i c h ,  economic development,  "represent  except  than  on B a s i c  benefitted  the  favoured  big  system  the  participation  and  contractors.  small  for  farmers  and  e x c l u d e d from d e c i s i o n - m a k i n g  of  new The  5 6  landless in  local  affairs. Basic  Democracy  machinery, other serve  had c o r r u p t e d  particularly  reform attempts the  regime.  interests These  5 7  politicians  launched.  the  military  history  mainly  criticisms  In  March  took  began  the  to  the m i l i t a r y  It  government  failed  like  s y s t e m was d e s i g n e d would  support  be v o i c e d by the  to the  provincial  Ayub  regime  Ayub Khan s t e p p e d down and  General  first  local  bodies.  movement a g a i n s t  under the  entire  group that  1969, G e n e r a l  power  Pakistan,  local  because  a certain  years witnessed of  rural  when a n a t i o n w i d e  was  c o u p l e of  of  the  the  Yahya  general crackdown  Khan.  elections in East  The  next  in  the  Pakistan,  56  the  s e c e s s i o n of  birth  of  East  Pakistan  Bangladesh.  informally  in  Local  the v i l l a g e s ,  them d u r i n g t h i s  p e r i o d of  1971 marked t h e periods  of  unstable  i n d e p e n d e n c e of  as w e l l a s rulers  local  stopped short reforms  were  government c o u l d not to  the  colonial local  actual  not  development  participation. years,  the  continued public  the In  as  Thus,  allow  the  natives  In  all  the  little  tradition, was not  unwillingness  of  the  retaining Local  The low  strong  of  level popular  the  later  bureaucracy too,  activities  used of  the  local  changes brought about  government  the c e n t r e  the  government  restricted  government, the  for  rulers  control  from t h o s e made by t h e  possible  local  autonomy  was e x t e n d e d i n  of  of  the  announced throughout  franchise  The n a t u r e  but  that  full  representative.  The P a k i s t a n i  of  foreign  The f o r e i g n  officials.  over  the  development  maintaining a  supervisors  Long  political  seems  to permit  franchise  of  .  institutions,  It  level.  for  limited  legacy  reform  years  the  times,  the  the p l a n s  government  differed  t h e p e o p l e and i t  preceding  reform l o c a l  to  the  to  in Bangladesh  At  trust  institutions.  the c o l o n i a l  operated  decentralization.  in Pakistan.  Pakistanis  to  be made f u l l y  colonial  institutions  have a f f e c t e d  systems.  A l t h o u g h the  officials  government  country  lowest  and  and  the  the  by  b o d i e s c o u l d never of  and  p r o v i s i o n s were made  government  rule  at  bodies.  rule,  the  intended  completely  federation,  crisis.  colonial  desire  institutions  local  national  government  of  government  domination  expressed their  the  and t h e r e were no a t t e m p t s  end of  foreign  from  the  kept  its  to d e l e g a t e  British.  distance  two t o work authority  by  from  together. to  the  57  lower  levels  system  of  The failure of  local  government  accorded  local  rewards  of  projects  suddenly  obstructed  Bangladesh system.  w i l l  affecting  than  of  changes  look  government  are at to  the  design  of  for  in  the  to  the  the  in  attempts  and to  .  of  local  in  village-based  bodies. of  these  many  cases,  p o l i t i c a l  villages  next  the  the  developmental  reforms.  the  the were  Since  Uneven  the  by  rivalry  control and  affairs  fate  a f f a i r s .  prominent,  respond  to  of  absence  local  major  government  led The  social  public  factors,  a  in  importance  discussed the  that  Bangladesh.  and  local  local  to  factor  resignation  feuds  became  these  prepared  problems  a  compete  a l l  in  i n i t i a t i o n  to  growth  only  participating  and  increased  affected  post-colonial  by  family  the  the  reforms  won  Factionalism  adequately  not  apathy  started  the  mobilization  I  be  Pakistan,  leaders  which  in  was  importance  institutions.  not  to  Sometimes, more  of  government.  of  villagers.  Local  p o s s i b i l i t y  legacy  resulted  creation  the  colonial  tangible  often  negated  Some  were of  the  chapter,  in  f i r s t local  independent government  58  NOTES Haroun Er Rashid, G e o g r a p h y of C o l o r a d o : Westview Press"^ 1978) , p.  Bangladesh ~.  (Boulder,  The f i g u r e s , are taken from a p r e l i m i n a r y r e p o r t on s e c o n d p o p u l a t i o n c e n s u s of B a n g l a d e s h . Published in weekly B i c h i t r a . J u l y 5, 1981, p. 13. Nafis Delhi:  Ahmad, Vikas,  Bichitra. See  Rashid,  A New E c o n o m i c G e o g r a p h y of 1976) , p . 63~.  July  5,  op.  1981, p.  cit.,  pp.  Bangladesh  the the (New  13. 519-21.  Sir William Wilson Hunter, E d i t i o n (London: Smith, E l d e r ,  A n n a l s of R u r a l and C o . , 1 8 9 7 ) ,  Bengal, 7th pp. 3-7.  Barrie M. M o r r i s o n , P o l i t i c a l C e n t e r s and C u l t u r e R e g i o n s in E a r l y Bengal, (Tucson, Arizona: The University of A r i z o n a P r e s s , 1970), p p . 9-10. Harold Alderfer, L o c a l Government i n D e v e l o p i n g (New Y o r k : M c G r a w - H i l l , 1 9 6 4 ) , p. 69. T h i s v i e w of S r i A u r o b i n d o was q u o t e d Gram S a r k a r i n H i s t o r i c a l P e r s p e c t i v e D e v e l o p m e n t Academy, 1 980) , p. ~. Ibid., Rashid,  p. op.  in  Countries  M. Nurul (Bogra:  Haq, Rural  1 . cit,  p.  161.  R.C. Mazumdar, H . C . Raychaudhuri A d v a n c e d H i s t o r y of I n d i a ( L o n d o n : 395.  and K a l i k i n k a r D u t t a , An Macmillan, 1953), p.  Ramkrishna Mukherjee, The D y n a m i c s of a R u r a l S o c i e t y . A S t u d y of t h e E c o n o m i c S t r u c t u r e i n B e n g a l V i l l a g e s (Berlin: A k a d e m i e - V e r l a g , 1 9 5 7 ) , p. 24~. Hugh Tinker, India, Pakistan 1954),  p.  The F o u n d a t i o n s of L o c a l S e l f - G o v e r n m e n t i n and Burma (London: The Athlone Press,  rr.  P h i l i p C a l k i n s , " C o l l e c t i n g t h e Revenue i n E a r l y Eighteenth C e n t u r y B e n g a l : From t h e C u l t i v a t o r t o the Zamindar," in B e n g a l , Change and C o n t i n u i t y , e d s . , R o b e r t P a u l Beech and Mary J a n e B e e c h (East Lansing, Michigan: Asian Studies C e n t e r , M i c h i g a n S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y , 1 9 6 9 ) , p. 5. Tinker,  op.  cit•,  p.  19.  59  17  Tapan Raychaudhuri, B e n g a l Under Akbar and J a h a n q i r . An I n t r o d u c t o r y Study i n S o c i a l H i s t o r y , 2nd Impression ( D e l h i : M u n s h i r a m M a n o h a r l a l , 1 9 6 9 ) , p. 68.  18  For d e t a i l s on t h e c o n d i t i o n s t h e B r i t i s h see H u n t e r , o p . c i t . , pp. 13-19.  19  L o c a l Government and t h e C o l o n i e s . A Report Colonial Bureau. Rita Hinden, Editor. A l l e n and Unwin L t d . 1950, p. 7.  20  Tinker,  21  Ibid.,  22  Chittabrata Palit, Tensions in Bengal Rural S o c i e t y . L a n d l o r d s , P l a n t e r s and C o l o n i a l R u l e , 1830-1860 ( C a l c u t t a : P r o g r e s s i v e P u b l i s h e r s , 1975) , p~. 193.  23  For details of Lord Mayo's r e s o l u t i o n , the Indian S t a t u t o r y Commission. Cmd. (London: H . M . S . O . , 1930), p p . 299-300.  24  Tinker,  25  R e p o r t of t h e B e n g a l D i s t r i c t A d m i n i s t r a t i o n C o m m i t t e e , 1 9 1 3-1 9i~4~ (Calcutta: Bengal Secretariat Press, 1915. Reprinted by the National Institute of Public A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , D a c c a , 1 9 6 6 ) , p. 91.  26  L o c a l Government A c t of 1885. Quoted in Ali Ahmed, A d m i n i s t r a t i o n of L o c a l S e l f - G o v e r n m e n t f o r R u r a l A r e a s i n B a n g l a d e s h ( D a c c a : L o c a l Government I n s t i t u t e , 1979), p7 13.  27  Ibid.,  28  S u b r a t a K. (Calcutta: 21 .  M u k h e r j e e , L o c a l S e l f - G o v e r n m e n t i n West B e n g a l D a s g u p t a & Company [ P r i v a t e ] L i m i t e d , 1 9 7 4 ) , p.  29  Ibid.,  22.  30  Tinker,  31  John McLane, "The 1905 P a r t i t i o n of B e n g a l and t h e New Communalism," in B e n g a l , E a s t and W e s t , ed., Alexander Lipski (East Lansing, Michigan: Asian Studies Center, M i c h i g a n S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y , 1 9 6 9 ) , p. 70.  32  Tinker,  33  R e p o r t of 1913-191.  op. p.  c i t . , pp.  found in  Bengal,  to the Fabian London: George  26-7.  32.  op.  pp.  cit.,  p.  see t h e R e p o r t 3568, Vol.  of 1  45.  13-14.  p. op.  op.  cit.,  cit.,  p.  p.  55.  87.  the Bengal D i s t r i c t A d m i n i s t r a t i o n Committee, See p p . 87-9, 1 0 1 .  60  34  R e p o r t on I n d i a n C o n s t i t u t i o n a l Reforms ( M o n t a g u - C h e l m s f o r d Report). C a l c u t t a , 1918. P a r a g r a p h 124.  35  Tinker,  36  R e p o r t of t h e Commission) .  37  J.H. Broomfield, Elite Conflict T w e n t i e t h - C e n t u r y BengaT (Berkeley U n i v e r s i t y of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1 9 6 8 ) ,  38  Tinker,  39  Ibid.,  40  Ramkrishna Mukherjee,  41  Azer Ali, R u r a l Development in Bangladesh B a n g l a d e s h Academy f o r R u r a l D e v e l o p m e n t , 1 9 7 5 ) ,  42  Ibid.,  p.  43  Ibid.,  pp.  44  M. Ghulam S a t t a r , " C o m i l l a A p p r o a c h t o R u r a l D e v e l o p m e n t . " J o u r n a l of t h e B a n g l a d e s h Academy f o r R u r a l D e v e l o p m e n t , C o m i l l a , X , 1 & 2 ( J u l y 1980 & J a n u a r y 1 9 8 1 ) , p p . 5-6.  45  For a detailed discussion of the reasons for poor p e r f o r m a n c e by l o c a l b o d i e s d u r i n g t h i s p e r i o d , see S . M . Z . Rizvi, editor. A Reader i n B a s i c Democracies (Peshawar: Academy f o r R u r a l D e v e l o p m e n t , 1 9 6 1 ) , p p . 15-22.  46  See  47  A.T.R. (Comilla: p. 31 .  48  Tajul Huque, Retrospect." 1 9 7 2 ) , p. 6.  49  op.  cit.,  op. pp.  p.  118.  I n d i a n S t a t u t o r y Commission L o n d o n , 1930, V o l . T~. P a r a g r a p h  c i t . , p.  350.  in a P l u r a l and Los pp. 286-7.  (Simon  Society: Angeles:  197.  205-6. op.  c i t . , pp.  1-9. p.  (Comilla: 14.  18. 20-22.  Ahmed, o p .  cit.,  Rahman, Pakistan  pp.  58-64.  B a s i c Democracy a t t h e G r a s s R o o t s Academy f o r V i l l a g e D e v e l o p m e n t , 1 9 6 2 ) ,  "Local Local  Government in Bangladesh Government Q u a r t e r l y . I,  2  -A (June  Ibid.  50  M.R. Khan, "Gramin Kshamata-Kathamor Swarup" [The Real Rural Power Structure]. In B e n g a l i , t r a n s l a t e d by Abdur Razzak. The D a i l y S a n q b a d . D h a k a , J u l y 5, 1982.  51  A.T.R. Rahman, An E v a l u a t i o n o f E a s t P a k i s t a n , 1963-64 ( C o m i l l a : Development, 1964), p p . 85-6.  t h e R u r a l Works Programme, P a k i s t a n Academy f o r R u r a l  61  52  The d i s t r i b u t i o n of t h e v o t e i n E a s t P a k i s t a n d i s t r i c t s in 1965 p r e s i d e n t i a l election has been o b t a i n e d from Rounaq J a h a n , P a k i s t a n : F a i l u r e i n N a t i o n a l I n t e g r a t i o n (New Y o r k : Columbia U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1972).  53  See Harry J. Friedman, "Notes on Pakistan's Democracies." A s i a n S u r v e y , I, (December 1 9 6 1 ) , p.  54  Harry J. Democracies." 1 44.  55  Jahan,  op.  cit.,  56  Ibid.,  pp.  121-2.  57  Faqrul Q u a d i r , " L o c a l Government i n B a n g l a d e s h : A C r i t i c a l Review." L o c a l Government Q u a r t e r l y , I, 3 (September 1972), p p . 28-9.  Basic 9.  Friedman, "Pakistan's Experiment in Basic Pacific Affairs, XXXIII (June 1960), p. p.  113.  62  III.  LOCAL  GOVERNMENT  Governments problems. is  The  break  in  by  the  personnel,  newly  attempts  domination. from  BANGLADESH:  organization  complicated  foreign  IN  past,  and  the  of  new  states  break  away  p o l i t i c a l  the  scarcity  pressing  problems  result  in  neglect  national  p o l i t i c a l  leaders  do  not  previous  systems,  continuation  of  existing  small  modifications  more  or  less  spoils  of  shift  their  and  and of  to  power,  government order  groups  in  without to  in  the  In  persisted  local  of  trend  rulers  its  throughout  must  own,  and  assembled  be  the  major  changes the  to  the the are  system  is  over  of brief  periods.  obstruct In  the  their  efforts  reorganize  w i l l  favour  traditionally  local them.  powerful with  government  does  not  changes  the  are  of  become put  prospects at  the  elections  work  control  days  to  The  to  programmes  considering  early  want  persuaded the  maintaining the  not  .  There  compete  for  government.  do  more  allow  the  government  changes,  cases,  without of  that  to  prospects  government  local  with  practice.  p o l i t i c i a n s the  qualified  alternatives  but  of  complete  government  but  t i t l e s ,  in  major  most  Hastily  implementation, The  to  ensuring  l o c a l i t i e s  plans  d i f f i c u l t .  only  the  introduce  government. concrete  and  developing  ready  a  and  rulers  local  government of  legacies  advocate  choice  The  disruption  p o s s i b i l i t i e s continue  local  undisturbed.  attention  have  l i t t l e  changes  independence,  Confusion  In  have  of  several  independence  the  the  SARKAR  face  resources  of  GRAM  following from  of  OF  states  leaders  preoccupation  and  GENESIS  independent  to  While  THE  the  Bangladesh  a l l  the have  the  more  forward  for  of  success. centre  did  not  that change  63  with  the  departure  government affairs in  continued  with  control  well  as  lowest place  the  of the  of  rural  system  colonial  pursue its  a  The  of  policy  in  a  local  and  to  The  of  of  the  of  government  local  who  were  government  decentralize  review  central  dominating  supporters  reluctance  powerholders clear  rulers.  o f f i c i a l s  bodies.  becomes  the  the  to  help  local  levels in  of  power  the  changes  in  Bangladesh  to  that  as the took  since  independence.  LOCAL  GOVERNMENT  AND  Bangladesh  was  1971.  The  to  s t a n d s t i l l ,  a  THE  POLITICAL  liberated  liberation  war  and  had  local  inoperative.  Nevertheless,  continued  to  be  During  liberation  into as  the  discredit  instruments  overhaul  of  governed p o l i t i c a l  its  order  in  the  for  a  years  party. and  f i r s t the  in  The  informally  country  of and  by  independence by  the  party  rule,  had  existing  local  a  AL up  leaders the  1971,  the  leaders. had  the  strong  task  put  a  major  institutions. was  dominant  base  unrivalled  faced  were  affairs  Bangladesh  (AL),  very  too,  Pakistanis  expected  government  League  enjoyed  setting  local  in  Awami  the  areas,  by  December, virtually  institutions,  nation  local  in  government  designed  The  including  rule  nationalist  institutions  subsequently  year  the  many  the  1971-197 5  Pakistani  government  exploitation.  system,  few  from  brought  movement,  achieving  independence, In  a l l of  the  After  managed  SCENE,  before  popularity. of  administrative  restoring machinery  64  following  the  attention  was  independence The several  paid  which  of  to  of  the  be  party's  done  Democracy to  among  that  it  that  preferred  f i r s t  the  reorganization  of  and  because  to  the  build  local  had  minimal  On  the  the  did  expense something Basic  government a  had  new  system  it  was  reform  took  want rural  previous  in  o f f i c i a l  government  had  not  the  to of  AL  in  that  the  had  stages  at  imperative  had  previous  changes  circumstances,  changes.  pre-  They  villagers  working  government  cosmetic  major  Moreover,  these  no  Moreover,  farmers  in  was  it  suspended.  the  i n i t i a l  war.  But  government,  Under  the  poor  stood  government.  in  favour  system  l i t t l e  Bangladesh  departments.  middle  local  and  had  ushering  was  reform,  Ministers  rural  about  surprising only  the  the  might  result,  of  liberation  by  a  government  the  supporters.  demonstrate  local  f i r s t  of  As  continue.  government  group  that  to  bureaucracy  after  government  Pakistanis.  government  the  Most  the  this  the  allowed  formed  on  base  antagonize  local  was  running  entirely  support  of  local  limitations.  reorganization its  to  system  AL  experience depend  departure  not  mind  level,  place  in  in  and the  early  1972. c  The  Bangladesh  (Dissolution  and  proclaimed  to  country.  The  administrators Councils to  be  were  Local  Councils  Administration)  dissolve  local  such  renamed  performed  by  a  (Amendment)  ceased  Panchayats  committee  to  councils  hold  and  appointed  Committees  Order,  Vice-Chairmen,  bodies  Union  Municipal  government  Chairmen, of  and  the  was  throughout  the  members  and  office.  their by  1972  The  Union  functions  were  Sub-Divisional  65  Officer  (S.D.O.).  exercised this  point  caused the be  by  elected  were  considerable  be  in  local  as  rural Union  People's for  the  local  in  accordance  law  changing Each  three  Chairman  were  also  very  along  with  the  were  often  position  rest  were  was  and of  the  changed  conditions  by  personal  a  leaders  party  and  the  decisions.  the  from  this  of  the  were  elected passed  Parishads.  and  each  union.  the  t i t l e s  of  in  local  The  a  the  ViceIn local  councils  considerations to  councils  villagers  3  deteriorated  parties the  a  ward  of  p o l i t i c a l  of  as  and  Decisions  the  provided  villages  opposition  The  appoint  Chairman  the  of  it  Union  wards  the  and  who  would  Panchayats  resulted  and  to  basis  Parliament  to  residents  country.  their  the  except  the  constitution  three  in  on Union  persons  1973,  the  p o l i t i c a l  of  was  councils  promulgated  to  This  this  Tahsildar  change  up  Subsequently,  would  a  addition,  effective  challenge  was  into  by  the  S.D.O.  Panchayats  In  elected  For  f i r s t  June  Union  criticism.  ruling to  no  In  2  local  or  l i t t l e  composed  divided  influenced  constructive the  of  l i t t l e  bodies,  with  be  law.  the  the  councils  that  elected 1  powers  o f f i c i a l s .  stating  that  Assistant very  local  the  p o l i t i c i a n s .  possible.  year,  members.  government  there  as  Bangladesh  name was  the  that  government  among  meanwhile,  to  with  the  elected  and  of  bodies  union  reality,  early  the  Republic  to  promising  Actually, in  in  c l a r i f i c a t i o n  Agricultural  Later  appeared  representatives  areas,  administrator. order.  a and  with  franchise  the  resentment  measure  constituted  adult  transferred  issued  temporary  it  representatives  being  government a  Gradually,  had  links  not  in  a  involved  in  were  people  provide  66  local  institutions  and d i d not want  were not  to  were  busy w i t h t h e  being  set  war. handle, for  had  more  In  an  solving  villagers tasks  relief  local  assigned  dependent  by  to  effort  to m o b i l i z e support  issues.  the  They were  liberation  them t h a n  on t h e  local  problems  committees which  affected  run t h e  Sheikh Mujibur  announced i n  in  d e a l i n g with l o c a l  o r g a n i z a t i o n of  and were c o m p l e t e l y  funds to  areas,  spend t i m e  up t o h e l p t h e  They  interested  they  central  could  government  organizations.  Rahman,  the  for  the AL i n  Prime M i n i s t e r  of  the  rural  Bangladesh  1973:  E l e c t i o n s a r e t o be h e l d soon t o t h e u n i o n c o u n c i l s throughout the c o u n t r y . This w i l l r e s u l t in c l o s e r l i a i s o n between t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and t h e p e o p l e and p o p u l a r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s w i l l be e n a b l e d t o run t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n at the v i l l a g e level." But  the c o u n t r y  mismanagement  by  the  decreased r a p i d l y . more  in  the  under  foreign aid  residents  faced  rural  areas.  and s u p p o r t  areas d e c l i n e d .  realised  such  for  on f u n d a m e n t a l official  partymen and a p p e a l e d t o of  of  elements."  5  The p o p u l a r i t y  relief  AL  to  suffered of  administration  the  the  was  materials appease  AL  felt  procured  the  urban  o r g a n i z i n g o p p o s i t i o n movements.  countryside  allowing  that  bad  the  the  The government  constitution  restrictions  of  by  who were c a p a b l e  assistance,  party.  Most of  was u s e d  impoverished  Mujib  ruling  The i m p a c t  The a l r e a d y  the  s e v e r e e c o n o m i c p r o b l e m s and  for  was  deprived  ruling political  party  p a s s e d a c o u p l e of special  rights  of  trials  relief in  those  amendments and  and j u r i s d i c t i o n  of  putting courts.  p o s i t i o n s were b e i n g m i s u s e d by  t h e AL members " t o  rid  the  to  his  organization  67  An emergency on  the  advice  member of  the  December, press,  1974.  the  and  President.  a  and l o c k o u t s , suspend  government  and  government  the c o n s t i t u t i o n  the  Prime M i n i s t e r  Sangsad  The  ban s t r i k e s  form of of  of  Jatiya  functioning, 1975,  was p r o c l a i m e d by t h e  President following  of  Bangladesh  t h e murder of  Union P a r i s h a d was  stop  member  in  empowered t o c e n s o r  the  political  fundamental  parties  rights.  was amended t o p r o v i d e  and S h e i k h M u j i b u r  a  from  On J a n u a r y  for  a  presidential  Rahman assumed t h e  "The Amendment v i r t u a l l y  25  office  destroyed a l l  powers  I  of  the  legislature  A the  single-party  cornerstone.  Awami League all  the  by  s e v e r e blow  to  little  public  government  administration. administrative  Mujib  protest  i n t r o d u c e d w i t h t h e AL  immediately  a l o n g w i t h some  Bangladesh  the  b r i n g the  was  this  move by  by t h e  to  party,  r u l i n g party structures  efficient  BAKSAL  was  totally  Although t h i s system,  divided  into  to  This the  fifty  as  well  would  move  local  w o u l d be f u r t h e r  administration  district  G o v e r n o r s who  BAKSAL. closer  there  followed.  r e o r g a n i z i n g the be  was a  Mujib.  government  h e a d e d by D i s t r i c t  single  existing district  the  a democratic  control  to  The pro-Moscow  the AL.  of  Sramik  Sheikh Mujib appealed  But  and  Krishak  as  new p a r t y .  a n n o u n c e d a scheme of  districts  more  the  joined  against  to ensure  expected  facilitate  join  establishment  by  and t h e  to  6  Bangladesh  significance.  be a p p o i n t e d to  t o be  1975, t h e  (NAP-M)  Sheikh the  Executive."  was c o n s t i t u t e d .  parties  minor  More e f f o r t s The  June  Awami P a r t y  g r o u p s of  the  s y s t e m was  (BAKSAL)  controlled  was  In  political  National other  to c o n t r o l  was  people,  divided as  to to  68  accommodate number o f July  more p e o p l e  districts  16,  1975,  in  in the  Sheikh  the  r e o r g a n i z a t i o n p l a n was  who  administration  September  materialize, was  however,  Over virtually  the  in  independence, bourgeoisie could  comprised the  of  Political  During  the  to  the  classes  and g r o u p s .  in  rural  even  the  The  support  base,  from a p r o v i n c i a l  1973, "in  nationalist the  general  rural  areas  party.  political a rural with  elite  were  of  After  a  T h i s g r o u p had a c q u i r e d p r o p e r t y  and  living in  residents  Bengalis  of  its  ruled  leadership  district the  the  AL  elections  came  areas,  of  represented from  and m o f u s s i l  urban  was  to a broad-based  the c o u n t r y and  from  support  gradually  interest",  in  nation  farmers  the p a r l i a m e n t a r y  in the  8  power.  nature  which  pie",  concentrated  bourgeoisie party  middle c l a s s careers  "capitalist  and s m a l l  to  Pakistani  gained unprecedented  areas.  transformed  prior  East  t h e AL a t t r a c t e d  The p a r t y  by  popular  this  of  war,  influenced  the  was,  was m o n o p o l i z e d by u r b a n  centre  liberation  15, 1975.  local  which  activities  Mujib  reconstruct  expectations  labourers  not  then,  or  of  district  independence,  deprived  share  sixty-one  Sheikh  c o u p on A u g u s t  AL  On  scheme d i d  headed by  revive  political  landless  The  7  the  revised.  over  following  the  an e q u a l  and p a r t i c i p a t i o n access  1975.  The  of  the  areas.  who had e a s y  all  meet  mostly  the c a p i t a l  years  was made t o  party  take  government  four  demanding  rural  the  to 1,  Bangladesh. the  hardly  were  by a m i l i t a r y  first  no a t t e m p t  government  in  as  removed from power  Later,  M u j i b a n n o u n c e d t h e names of  Governor-designates from  scheme as G o v e r n o r s .  the  towns.  and  9  used  69  the  small  they  neglected the r u r a l  urban  towns  areas.  political  only  areas  political  bases.  and s e r v e d t h e  As a  The  activities  politicians,  interests  in their  political  scene.  of the f a c t  b i d to  attain  The i n t e r e s t s that  they  attracted  too,  of the r u r a l  of  of  to  to  serve  in  the  national  people  preferred  prominence  result,  interest  The emergence o f Dhaka a s t h e c e n t r e  and c o m m e r c i a l  capital.  spite  as t h e i r  the  the urban  national  poor s u f f e r e d ,  c o n s t i t u t e d the b i g g e s t  section  in of  the p o p u l a t i o n .  RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Mujib's  STRATEGIES AND RESULTS  government  c o u l d not reform l o c a l  e x t e n d them t o t h e l o w e s t  levels,  s e e k i n g t h e s u p p o r t of t h e r u r a l development. British sought  Some  progress  and P a k i s t a n i  b u t f o u n d an a l t e r n a t e electorate  had  in emphasizing  already  p e r i o d s , and  after  way  of  rural  been made d u r i n g t h e 1971  the  government  t o c o n t i n u e t h e s e programmes.  Khan  and  Latif  concerned with r u r a l the R u r a l  Works  Programme  (ARPP),  (IRDP),  and  have  development  Programme  the  reviewed  the  (RWP),  Integrated  Water  were  Bangladesh  considered .  p r i n c i p a l programmes .  1  0  These  the A c c e l e r a t e d Rice Rural  Development  extremely  the  in Bangladesh  programmes were p l a n n e d and i n i t i a t e d they  i n s t i t u t i o n s or  Development  Programme. before  useful  include  Production Programme  Most of  these  independence,  after  the  birth  and of  70  The RWP aimed t o p r o v i d e to  earn  their  livelihood  landless  i n the  dry  to h e l p d e v e l o p  infrastructures  —  facilities  in  areas  —  institutions. in  rice  over  things,  The ARPP was  new  at  IRDP  Centres.  The  Programme  water  was  and  entrusted  included  resources  priority  objectives  labourers,  it  irrigation."  reaching  development  mostly  to  landless Bangladesh  1 2  the  D u r i n g the wealthy  labourers. to  reverse  1 3  Also,  this  its  resulted  Pakistan period, as a g a i n s t  concrete trend.  "competing  most  step  a  the has  the  community  benefit  time  in a steady the  to  roads limit  drain  benefits vast been  for  from  " e m p h a s i s on  the absence of  targets  farmers, No  for  and  The programmes  resources  the  and  implementing  s o u r c e s and t h e  provided  was c r i t i c i z e d  opposed to  the e x c h e q u e r .  RWP  financial  Water  successful,  and e a c h was  foreign assistance the  and  the  planning  unintended consequences.  national  for  the  programmes were o n l y m i n i m a l l y  Although  to  and d e s i g n i n g and  skills  as  other  Development  l i m i t e d managerial  landless  among  Training  i n a number of  1 1  government  Thana  measures.  effort."  aimed,  supply,  the  (WDB)  exchequer,  water  s y s t e m and  flood control  different  self-sufficiency  cooperative  of  had  government  and p r o v i d i n g was  credit  two-tier  distribution  resulted  local  was  a  Board  The v a r i o u s  wells,  f i v e y e a r s by p r o m o t i n g  The  the  tube  intended to achieve  inputs.  opportunity  The programme  through  rice,  Development  Development  roads,  of  spreading of  season.  varieties  on o t h e r  organization Water  rural  a p e r i o d of  introducing subsidies  the  l a b o u r e r s an  went  majority taken  on  of in  71  The between two.  ARPP  has  been c r i t i c i z e d  l a n d o w n i n g and l a n d l e s s  Similar  to  a  "greater  criticisms  disciplined model"  building  a  the loose c o o p e r a t i v e s  Authority not  of  the  cooperative  of in  Bangladesh  1981 r e v e a l e d  been n o t e w o r t h y  course  of  and that  and t h a t  society  the  interest All  suffered  at  rural  from a l a c k  and s u b s i d i z i n g " r e v i e w by  the performance  the  Development  of t h e IRDP focus  had  i n the  The IRDP has been d i s s o l v e d and Board  in  1982.  Programme has so f a r d e m o n s t r a t e d  a n d no e x p e r t i s e  attempts  This  painstaking  t h e programme had l o s t  i t s rapid expansion.  Water D e v e l o p m e n t  IRDP.  International  r e p l a c e d by t h e B a n g l a d e s h R u r a l Development The  1  of the C o m i l l a  A joint  1 5  problem." "  "slow  registration  the  self-sufficiency  the  of  inequality  polarizing  at  against  of the A R P P .  the  political  goals  and t h e " r a p i d d e v e l o p m e n t ,  Government  and  levelled  between  thus  the attempt  social  were  o r g a n i z a t i o n was t o r n  for  farmers,  A c c o r d i n g to the c r i t i c s ,  would l e a d  f o r widening  i n who u s e d t h e water  development  it  of c o o r d i n a t i o n  and  "little  develops."  through various  1 6  1 7  organizations  conflicting  sets  of  priorities. Such resulted  s p o r a d i c and i n c o n s i s t e n t in  occasional  efforts  increases  s e a s o n employment o p p o r t u n i t i e s  in  findings  personnel  involved  rural  Improvements  were n o t i c e d  mostly  reaped  stated  objective  in  some  rural  for  poor, the  areas,  of p r o v i d i n g a b e t t e r  and  some  to  and  programmes. benefits  of wealthy v i l l a g e r s . life  off-  and t r a i n i n g  villagers  development  by a s m a l l p e r c e n t a g e  development  productivity,  f o r the r u r a l  and d i s s e m i n a t i o n of r e s e a r c h in  at  the  were The  villagers,  72  especially  the  achieved.  In  overwhelming  fact,  poor c o n t i n u e d to The  generally  The  rural  gap between  efforts  of  became  subsidized  the  government  poor,  and  was  the  not  rural  t h r o u g h government access  to  side,  factions  t e n d e d , t o be g a i n i n g c o n t r o l  objectives  of  the  lost  in  these  and  the  main  rural  programmes  funds which  to  f u n d s were used by l o c a l  their  sponsored  These  villagers  faith  rural  wealthy  obvious.  groups w i t h the best  available  of  widen.  ineffectiveness  development  the  the  majority  benefitted  government  offices.  influentials  to  purpose  the  of  those  programmes were n e g l e c t e d  and  were  of  recruit rival  resources. the  The  villagers  projects.  THE SWANIRVAR MOVEMENT A Swanirvar Bangladesh) principal  was  B a n g l a d e s h A n d o l o n (movement  of  population  increasing agricultural growth.  d e v e l o p e d by Mahbub Alam C h a s h i , Pakistan  Foreign  district,  and a s a h i g h l e v e l  government. Bil  In  Service.  able  self  help  to  The  idea  a senior  was  officer  He was a B a n g l a d e s h i officer,  Thana i n t h e  persuade  instead  self-reliant  had c l o s e  of  district  the v i l l a g e r s depending  to  totally  of  the  production  and  conceived  and  of  the  former  from C h i t t a g o n g links  with  1967, when a f l o o d d e s t r o y e d t h e c r o p s  under R a n g u n i a  was  a  l a u n c h e d a s an autonomous o r g a n i z a t i o n w i t h  objectives  reducing  for  the  i n Gumai  Chittagong,  Chashi  r e c r o p the a r e a  through  on  relief  materials  73  p r o v i d e d by t h e possible This  to  government.  recrop  s u c c e s s was  Noakhali  were  relief  Starting  with  which  Swanirvar  activities  i n d e p e n d e n c e of the  strategy  devastated in  a country  there  had  did  project  generate  in  came  to  the  The  by  government  with  help  Swanirvar  in  others,  they  food  among in  into  from  the  districts. Swanirvar  national  cases,  natural were The  decided to  use  famine  that  entirely  new  Previously,  in  to  boost  people  to  meet  disasters.  In  drawn  up  with  success  of  such  District  efforts  the  district  f o c u s s e d on o t h e r  initiative.  programme  Swanirvar C o n f e r e n c e took p l a c e Meanwhile,  the  by t h e  local  in  and  officials  some c a s e s ,  of  The the  efforts first  were while them were  National  1975.  development  aspects  1 9  of  scale,  h e l p e d t o o r g a n i z e t h e programmes and l e f t  a  the  after  officials  production.  t o be d e v e l o p e d t h r o u g h p o p u l a r combined  in  from  on a l a r g e  f l o o d s and f a m i n e s .  programmes  involved  village  programmes  i d e a was not  1974-75,  actively  in  self-sufficiency  authorities  following  varied  Ramgati  fore  people a f f e c t e d  facing  production  awareness  i n c r e a s i n g demands, e s p e c i a l l y  programmes  was  measures.  the  organized  District  1974.  efforts  e m p h a s i s on i n c r e a s e d  in  to a t t a i n  locally  again  frequently  district  relief  and f u n d s r e c e i v e d  capital  rehabilitate  been  agricultural  not  country  massive  it  1 8  Bangladesh.  to  the  the  isolated,  self-help  participation,  a tornado devastated  material  u s e d as  cooperatives.  without  in a s i m i l a r  After  1970, t h e  government  area  repeated  district.  November  through  the  Through l o c a l  life  programmes, in  the  rural  in  some  society  of  74  Bangladesh  .  For  example,  "stress  was  District  programme,  food  remained The  a  for  of  organization villagers workers  in  in  The of  the  Swanirvar  Swanirvar  Agriculture  government  Committee  followed.  Chashi  was  Mushtaq  Ahmed.  It  movement  would  The  national  f i r s t  workshops of  the  in  ideals  and  Chashi,  change  Swanirvar d i s t r i c t strategies  f u l l  that  that  Conference designed of  the  The  to  the  was  the  government  make  his  movement.  the  sign  Swanirvar 1975,  Khandakar Swanirvar  government.  followed the  1  Special  in  President  was  of  f i r s t  Central  new  2  programme  i n i t i a t o r  the  were  attention  this  of  another.  d i f f i c u l t .  the  and  the  government  appointed  a  the  that  was  to  the  village  to  expenses  Chashi  support  area  caught  of  for  training  extremely  of  Secretary  evident  the  and  constitution  the  manual  between  had  each  process  training  huge  convinced  Principal  became  enjoy  each  The  The  a  one  trust  in  villages,  and  progress  now  part  village  the  from  however,  Alam  After  appointed  of  (Swanirvar),  approval.  one  of  self-reliance.  Mahbub  in  groups,  entailed  made  was  national  movement,  Secretary, of  which  in  ideas  lack  movement,  self-sufficiency  village.  survey,  transmit  Dhaka, the  selected  interest  the  a  for  as  and  0  available  villagers  government  2  Sylhet  of  compilation  programmes and  the  slogan  of  activity  Swanirvar  the  out to  the  to  a  different  workshops  contributed  the  into  resources  carrying  and  planning  f a c t o r . "  included  j u s t i f i e d ,  o f f i c i a l s  d i s t r i c t s  administration  of  Unfortunately, never  although  development  the  the  family  constant  development  survey  on  d i s t r i c t  d i s t r i c t of  laid  in  up  with  villagers  aware  In  the  Second  75  National  Swanirvar  continue  It  can  groundwork  after  the  or  of  representation  of  this  categorized  the  all  2  them  continuously  workshops  higher train  in resident  Swanirvar  to  p o i n t e d out  that:  records.  2 5  through  local  resources.  These  coordinating  body  some  work  this  classes  could  selected  be  the  adult  village.  and by  residents Adequate  2 3  t o be e n s u r e d .  Swanirvar  Bangladesh  into  youth,  workers  up programmes t h r o u g h workshops performance  of  government  levels  f r a m i n g of  g r o u p s was  and  was  the C i r c l e in  the in  different  the  strategy  h e l p of  b r i n g i n g the  from  an a s s e m b l y of  women,  laid  c o m m i t t e e s were formed f o r  population  The i n i t i a l  Swanirvar  and  the  village  each thana w i t h the  of  at  to  develop  organizations  the a v a i l a b l e  committees  organizers  labourers,  professions. "  objective  The  families  p u r p o s e , the  agricultural  village  by e l e c t i o n of  and t o  movement  village-based  survey  groups.  resolved  2 2  Swanirvar  representatives  heads  better  effort,  p l a n s and i m p l e m e n t i n g a  was  The movement e m p h a s i z e d t h e  Swanirvar  with  consensus  thana  it  had t o be a s s i g n e d and s u p e r v i s e d by a  professional  hold  1976,  thana. the  developing  development  purpose  For  that  Bangladesh.  villagers.  or  in each  said  for  initiative  of  village be  independent  tasks  in  t h e movement as a n o n - p o l i t i c a l  a self-reliant  village  Conference  to  farmers, pursuers  select  Officer of  these  in  landless of  other  one v i l l a g e  in  (Development),  to  villages  officials with  had  the  at  with  the  union,  villagers  the v i l l a g e s  for  in those  villages  which  Shaikh  Maqsood  Ali,  the  and  to  followachieved  'however,  76  (a) t h e S w a n i r v a r v i l l a g e s s e l e c t e d by t h e C O . Dev. (or o t h e r d i s t r i c t o f f i c e r s ) were u s u a l l y v e r y near t h e Thana c e n t r e s . T h e s e v i l l a g e s a l s o had b e t t e r c o m m u n i c a t i o n f a c i l i t i e s and b e t t e r r e c o r d of development i n the p a s t ; (b) t h e S w a n i r v a r camps i n many c a s e s r e d u c e d themselves to p i c n i c spots for o f f i c e r s (with s u b s t a n t i a l wastage of money, t i m e and e n e r g y of t h e o f f i c e r s and a l s o of t h e v i l l a g e r s ) ; (c) t h e S w a n i r v a r C o m m i t t e e s formed i n t h e v i l l a g e were not r e a l l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e i n c h a r a c t e r : t h e p o o r and t h e d i s t r e s s e d were m o s t l y n o m i n a t e d c a n d i d a t e s of t h e r i c h and t h e p o w e r f u l . 2 6  Nevertheless, were  evaluated  in  accomplishments. the  'A'  for  doing f a i r l y  villages  for  and  while  the  food  average  the  income  encouragement  of  self-reliant  village.  institutions the in  the  for  the  r a t e went d o w n . and  by  in  the  'C  i n c l u d e d 74 successful  thirty-seven  per  r a t e went u p ,  and  1977,  added  with  Bangladesh  the  in  category  the  had  had s e l f - g o v e r n i n g  w h i c h can be c o n s i d e r e d t o be  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  their  The r e s u l t s  2 8  e a c h u n i o n of  These v i l l a g e s  to  'B'  most  literacy  expansion,  the  category the  villages  and were put  placed  'D' In  2 7  in  i n c r e a s e d by a b o u t  government, 2 9  were  and t h e  production improved,  enthusiasm  were put  157 v i l l a g e s  d o i n g some work,  according  did excellently  96 v i l l a g e s  well.  354 S w a n i r v a r  classified  villages  p o p u l a t i o n g r o w t h and c r i m e to  to C h a s h i ,  w h i c h d i d not do any w o r k .  villages, cent,  1976 37  category,  category  according  local  forerunners  b o d i e s e s t a b l i s h e d by t h e  a  of  government  1980. The S w a n i r v a r  villages government  were  included  and t h e  The S w a r n i r v a r  movement in  kept the  of  momentum  programme.  name Gram S a r k a r  workers  gaining  a village  was  The i d e a of  first  called  and  more  village  u s e d a r o u n d 1977.  Pashchim S u l t a n p u r  in  77  Chittagong d i s t r i c t Gram S a r k a r , health,  and  family  distributed  planning,  the  of  The t i t l e s (village  adjacent  Ministers  in  respective  calling their  villages  union s a r k a r s The  of  differences  formed  and  thus  success  between  them  to  expanded  council After  in  some  composed of the  "sought  all  assumption  of and  formally  to  "Village  the  link  for  h i g h l i g h t i n g the  in  the  mobilization were s e t  of  of  up and i n  and  politicians, Union Sarkar  of  first  Swarnirvar the  to  villages  in  Union P a r i s h a d  3 1  In  council it  members.  was  the  use of  members  in  their  village  time.  in  and  the  with  decided to c a l l  the idea  with a union. Rahman  Swanirvar  Members and C h a i r m e n on  voluntary  1977, more U n i o n  was  the  the  1977, Z i a u r  based  the  and  3 0  Union S a r k a r s ,  the Union P a r i s h a d  development  Union  not c o v e r e d by  chiefs  for  individual  and g r a d u a l l y  form  idea the  villages  Presidency  resources."  However,  popular.  Sarkars"  those u n i o n s , Union M i n i s t e r s  union and  the  rural  local  responsibilities. village  role  (village  These  the  were  who were  became  between  the  t h e Gram S a r k a r  integrate  by  process  unions  of  Sarkar  t h e members of  S w a n i r v a r movement began t o be n o t i c e d , was  others  Gram S a r k a r  ministers)  a  education,  Rangunia Union adopted the  was e s t a b l i s h e d  apparent  and  them " U n i o n M i n i s t e r s " .  turn  Committee  agriculture,  the V i l l a g e  u n i o n by d i s t r i b u t i n g p o r t f o l i o s and  Swanirvar  entrusting  members  and Gram M a n t r i  Parishad  the  the  village  cooperatives,  Ministers.  The C h a i r m a n of his  portfolios  among  called Village government)  named t h e i r  were  Sarkars assigned  term  "ministers"  not  liked  by  them Gram S a r k a r  for some and  78  The S w a n i r v a r movement had e n j o y e d of  the  government,  and t h e M i n i s t r y  Development  and  advising  integration  its  President projects its  Zia  Cooperatives  undertaken  favour.  It  by t h e  appears  1978,  became c l e a r . country  to  a  number  t h e most  organized,  village  of  had gone  increased, encouraged.  a  Swanirvar  facts  and But  and  planned  the  of  about  the the  visiting  3 2  various  speaking was  where  of of  Swanirvar  in  being  the  of  the  village  resources  groups  had  locally,  social  movement  movement  attention  functional  number  the  administration.  party.  development  evaluators  Rural  circulars  movement  d i s p u t e s had been s e t t l e d up,  of  movement and by  successful villages interest  by  patronage  Government,  number  support  ruling of  Local  The s p o n s o r s were d r a w i n g  had been s u r v e y e d ,  literacy  the  de f a c t o  government  Swanirvar  p o l i t i c i z e d and u s e d by t h e By  his  that  of  issued  with l o c a l  demonstrated  the  the  rate  workers  had  village found  been  had been  some  defects: (a) t h e r e were S w a n i r v a r v i l l a g e s t h a t c l a i m e d t o have s u r v e y e d r e s o u r c e s , but t h i s was known o n l y t o a s m a l l g r o u p of p e o p l e . (b) t h e r e were S w a n i r v a r v i l l a g e s where v i l l a g e f a c t i o n a l i s m and d i s p u t e s s t i l l c o n t i n u e d and made t h e o p e r a t i o n of i n t e r e s t g r o u p o r g a n i z a t i o n s i n e f f e c t i v e ; (c) t h e s p r e a d of e d u c a t i o n had been r a t h e r slow i n most S w a n i r v a r v i l l a g e s . In many c a s e s t h e initial momentum g o t l o s t a f t e r a few m o n t h s ; (d) t h e t r a d i t i o n a l l e a d e r s s t i l l d o m i n a t e d most i n t e r e s t g r o u p o r g a n i z a t i o n s and t h e S w a n i r v a r C o m m i t t e e s and as s u c h , t h e s e o r g a n i z a t i o n s and c o m m i t t e e s c o u l d not f u n c t i o n as e x p e c t e d . Sometimes t h e s e S w a n i r v a r C o m m i t t e e s were i n f i l t r a t e d by v i l l a g e t o u t s and o t h e r u n d e s i r a b l e e l e m e n t s f o r t h e i r own interests; (e) o f t e n v i l l a g e s o p t e d f o r t h e S w a n i r v a r scheme o n l y i n t h e hope t h a t t h e y would e v e n t u a l l y g e t more r e s o u r c e s f r o m t h e g o v e r n m e n t ; and ( f ) v e r y l i t t l e c o u l d be done i n t h e S w a n i r v a r  major  79  villages There  were  Swanirvar the  for  t h e p o o r and d i s t r e s s e d .  contradictory  movement.  village"  the  considered  While  thought  endeavour, it  observations  of  "the  3 3  on t h e  intellectual  village  landless,  the  youth  t o be " g o o d and u s e f u l " .  and  3 4  It  movement  national the  Swanirvar  strong  Ministry  and  of  a  cancellation At t h e  their  villages  ruling  local it  futile  women  groups for  expectations  in  support its  toward  usefulness  Government, cancelling  the  continued of  Gram  centre,  that  a  be c a p t u r e d and u s e d by  other  BNP.  In  October  Gram S a r k a r s . the  and  1978,  Cooperatives  The o r g a n i z e r s  government  successfully  many v i l l a g e s  could  progressing  endeavour despite  the  to the  of not  through attain official  Sarkars. the government m a i n t a i n e d c o r d i a l  organizers  agreed to accept  in  apprehensive  was  The v i l l a g e r s '  3 5  Their  institution  that  w h i c h was  efforts.  party  R u r a l Development  the  in  were o r g a n i z e d under  government  might  to c h a l l e n g e  movement  self-reliance  the  the  Bangladesh p r o t e s t e d  non-governmental  with  made  that  Local  a notice  suspend  less  programme, and some d e m o n s t r a t e d p r o g r e s s .  parties  Swanirvar  e d u c a t e d of  p r o v i d e d a forum  and a d m i t t e d  A number of  successful  developing, political  the  along expressed i t s  self-reliance,  probably and  issued  for  had a l l  development.  progress  or  the  councils.  The government the  and t h e  t h e movement as a more  d i s a d v a n t a g e d g r o u p s t o o r g a n i z e and v o i c e the  p r o s p e c t s of  the  Bangladesh C o m m i t t e e .  of  Swanirvar  chairmanship 3 6  He v i s i t e d  Bangladesh. of  the  In  National  the Naldanga union  relations 1979,  Zia  Swanirvar in  Rangpur  80  district  in  July  1979, and s t a t e d  had been s u c c e s s f u l said  that  his  i n t h o u s a n d s of  government  successful.  68,000  of  Naldanga  union.  a massive Zia  plan was  convinced government  Bangladesh  making t h e  leaders  officials  organizations. initially,  of of  Some  and  were  d e v e l o p e d by t h e  benefits  that  persist  in  prefixing  the  distinguish ones.  3 8  The  the  the  to  endeavours. word  need  The  "Swanirvar"  proposed v i l l a g e  Swanirvar  patronage  from the  villagers  on t h e i r  Gram  government, own.  having  did take  not  movement.  3 7  and  Cabinet  and  village-based like  over  of  undertaken  Naldanga his  to all  example  had  at  members of for  to  the  made  that  the  self-reliant.  leaders  Swanirvar  would a c c r u e  their  government  BNP,  reluctant  already  the  He  needed  hope  follow  progress the  BNP  t o do e v e r y t h i n g  villages  movement  in Bangladesh.  would  Zia,  i m p r e s s e d by t h e  the  Swanirvar  He e x p r e s s e d t h e  According to for  the  villages  was w i l l i n g  make t h e movement villages  that  an But  the  idea  institution the  political  BNP made Z i a and h i s  followers  objections to  the  title  institution  Sarkars, and  were  were  Gram S a r k a r  from  too, to  were be  removed  the to run  by to  existing have by  no the  81  LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND THE POLITICAL SCENE, The 1975,  military  government  office  of to  consist  the  Chairman to  supervision  activities  order."  0  It  authority  to  Parishads  ,"  of  over  willingness  the  to  to  retaining  Union  The  Parishads  was  could  to ensure  Sub-Divisional  Officer  control  was the  central  the  with  the  Union  in a l l  governments  over  the  that  demonstrated  control  that  in  control  "visible  3 9  exercise  stated  otherwise  years,  powers.  purposes  None of  2  five  executive  independence  reduce  November  composition.  government  or  central  since  in  1976,  The  all  the  suspend,  the Union P a r i s h a d . " " Bangladesh  their  Parishad  with  p r o v i d e d the  short,  in  the Union P a r i s h a d s  conformed  In  the  vested  direct, 1  of  Ordinance,  also  power  members i n c l u d i n g two women and a  office  and c o n t r o l  in  was a b o l i s h e d .  twelve  was  the  their  ruled  of  The t e r m of  According  parts  w i t h some c h a n g e s  the V i c e - c h a i r m a n  Chairman. and  took o v e r  i s s u e d a new L o c a l Government O r d i n a n c e  the Union P a r i s h a d s  were  that  1975-80  had  their  rural  local  institutions. Not new  being sure  military  national  of  rulers  elections  of  which  Bangladesh were  to  were  permitted to operate  Parishad Their  A survey  power  scheduled  at the  affiliations revealed  the  that  time,  about  e l e c t e d members had some " f o r m of  known  support,  to  for  election  were  and  decided  c o u n c i l s were h e l d .  membership c o n t e s t e d  political  however. the  local  political  elections not  the  their  postpone  1977.  candidates  to  the  Instead,  As p o l i t i c a l  as  the  parties  for  Union  independents. the  forty-seven  electorate,  per  cent  a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h the  of  Awami  82  League"  at  "elected  one t i m e village  League and o t h e r the  potential  and s o u g h t  duties  right  to  to  over  h o l d i n g the  Zia  sought  training.  would  the be  local  restore first  support  the  l e a d e r s h i p of  affirmative  votes  Zia  power  nationalist put  front),  forward  Zia  a large  margin.  the  Nationalist  of  leaders  the  and  gradual  for a  party  in  attracting  and  the  leadership  of  promised  More  cast  a coalition as  village  spite  under  and  Zia.  election  of  Party  the  in  his  i n May  a  1977  return  ninety-nine favour.  1978  was  In  its  was  returned Front  parties  candidate  per  This  which  political  election.  to  ascertaining  The J a t i y a t a b a d i six  (BNP)  in  than  presidential  d i s s o l v e d a few months a f t e r Bangladesh  their  instrumental  were  by a p r e s i d e n t i a l by  bodies to perform  s t e p was a p l e b i s c i t e  followed to  were  need became o b v i o u s  stability  The  cent  Programmes  In  government  democracy. for  arena  leaders.  the m i l i t a r y  to  local  recognized  t h r o u g h m e e t i n g s and c o n f e r e n c e s ,  strategies,  s u p p o r t of  leaders.  the  Muslim  i n the p o l i t i c a l  were made t o b r i n g t h e  abroad f o r  which  Meanwhile,  local  of  the  The m i l i t a r y  3  position  members of  government  these  organization  these  attempts  members were s e n t s u c c e s s of  c l a i m e d t o be s u p p o r t e r s of  to t h e i r  train  the  and t w e n t y - t h r e e p e r c e n t  wing p a r t i e s . " "  threat  better,  closer  leaders  t o win  implemented  or a n o t h e r ,  in  (the which  1978,  was  place,  the  formed i n September  1978  w i t h Z i a as C h a i r m a n . After extend rural  tlie  the  f o r m a t i o n of  organization  Bangladesh.  the rapidly  A strong r u r a l  BNP,  attempts  and e s t a b l i s h  were  made  to  power  bases  in  b a s e was deemed e s s e n t i a l  for  83  the  BNP t o compete w i t h o t h e r  AL,  its  forces form  most p o w e r f u l i n the  the  party  The a g r a r i a n  the  Thus, other  addition  is  this,  be made c o h e s i v e .  The  Bangladesh c a l l e d  in executing  not  governments  representative  surprising  the  role  rural that  for  the  of  the  rapid  of  the  Zia's  government  the  divergent  BNP  had  to  country.  development, guiding  development  i n the d e v e l o p i n g w o r l d , local  especially  to  was e x p e c t e d t o p l a y  government it  In  parties,  and run t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n  economy of  and t h e p a r t y for  rival.  had t o  government  political  force  programmes.  government,  like  decided to  introduce  as  a  candidates  in  many  "nation-building"  instrument. The BNP elections reserved were  held for  a number getting  in  1979,  directly  of  elected.  took  the  The  elections. was  The  and  place party  was  the  formed  people with widely  elected.  within  was  A  different  as  they  the  Parliament.  Some  BNP  the  series  the  party was  experts  rightly  well-organized hastily  seats  in a very  in a c o l l e c t i o n  BNP  The  the  joined  was  include  parliamentary  subsequent b y - e l e c t i o n s ,  machinery  to  b r o a d - b a s e d , and  party  party  the  went t o  candidates  T h e s e r a p i d moves r e s u l t e d personalities  in  (Parliament).  extended  were  by t h e members of  Thus t h e  Sangsad  207  Parliament  independent  reorganizations  cohesive  and  were won by t h e p a r t y  the J a t i y a  Cabinet  298  women i n t h e  elected  more s e a t s  in  nominated  party  strong of  and after  position  reforms  and  immediately  after  strengthened.  The  and p r o f e s s i o n a l s .  of  wide  called  "anything  politicial  and t u r n e d out  variety but  of a  party.'""  1  t o be a g r o u p o f  i d e o l o g i e s and b a c k g r o u n d s .  84  Thus Z i a ' s control  over  government  the  rural  set  areas  out  system.  In  Parliament  formally  established  June  1980,  These  an  a  A c t of  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  and r e c o n c i l i a t i o n  village-based  was  of  the  The a s s e m b l i e s were d i r e c t e d t o e n s u r e  the  Swanirvar  professions  in  Gram S a r k a r s  keeping  village  concerned."  chosen  as  local  As w e l l ,  5  members.  economy.  t h e end of  had been o f f i c i a l l y Zia  was  structure  law  to double food By  of Gram S a r k a r  a minimum of  up.""  7  the v i l l a g e r s would thus help  receive  the  and o r d e r , production  the  the  nature  and of  the  two women were t o  be  promote f a m i l y through  roots  level  level  a  capital.  planning,  self-reliant  6  creating through the  a  new  development  union-level coordinators  links  development  participation.  BNP t o e x t e n d i t s  The  scheme  organization into  the  between  activities  b o o s t as t h e s e w o u l d be a d m i n i s t e r e d local  power  establishment  and by i n s t a l l i n g  Rural  of  t h o u s a n d Gram S a r k a r s  Bangladesh."  " s e r i o u s about  lowest  and t h e  facilitating  of  classes  T h e s e b o d i e s were t o be u t i l i z e d as  a  (village  representation  demographic  d e v e l o p m e n t c o o r d i n a t o r s and d i s t r i c t higher  negotiation  residents  various  1980, s i x t y - e i g h t  the g r a s s at  the  organized in  r e p o r t e d as  from  the  eleven  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r s would t a k e c a r e  problems, maintain  and a t t e m p t  with  of  adult  of  headman).  Gram Shava  village in  of  (village  w h i c h c o u l d be a t t e n d e d by a l l  local  system  t o be c h o s e n t h r o u g h  i n an a s s e m b l y  the  and  Bangladesh  units  assembly) .  with  the  nation-wide  members were t o be h e a d e d by a Gram P r a d h a n The  links  t h r o u g h r e o r g a n i z a t i o n of  government  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r s .  to e s t a b l i s h  locally,  would rural  also  society  85  and win  s u p p o r t of  them.  The  was  "able  the  food  to  somehow first  install  for  village  through  attempts  stopped  prior  established.  and  his  any p o l i t i c a l  that  absent.  In  government government  the of to  "democratically To  of  summarize,  the  since of  local  closer  examination  of  the  alteration and  was  intended.  politicians  issued notices their areas  who  were p u t  projects. spontaneous officials  President's  operated  of  T h i s negated the  inhibited  show  to  in  the  have in  in  was  the  the  apart  planning  practically  Year  Plan,  to b r i n g  villages  been  the local  through  a number of  little  benefits  But  local that  the  c o u l d be  of  Rules  advisors Ministry  to arrange  and r u r a l  Control  growth  in  a  substantial  and t h e  offices  officials  various  normal  had  were  Bangladesh.  capital,  field  participation. the  be  8  was  Orders, Ordinances, that  the  Government  in charge  local  this  The c h a n g e s were s u g g e s t e d by  and c i r c u l a r s  implementation.  him.""  previously,  intention  there  government  amendments  would  9  1971  area  Five  of  improve  institutions  bodies  its  level  bodies.""  in  parliamentary  villages;  Second  Zia  government  representation  stated  changes  and  the  the  elected  grass-root  elected  local  recognized that  people's  it  to  once  and  to d i s l o d g e  village-based  Bangladesh the  .  reaching  through  draft  .  reforming  government  decision-making  system  increased production,  at  to  Union P a r i s h a d s ,  government  party.  genuine  The  by d i s p e n s i n g b e n e f i t s  E c o n o m i c Review commented t h a t  previous  time  from t h e  influentials  Eastern  situation  difficult All  Far  local  outlying  development reaped  by  for  from  government  democratic  local  86  institutions. councils,  yet  made r e f o r m s The  retaining in  local  birth  awareness in  This contradiction  local  of  among t h e affairs  control  resulted  population.  and t h e  government  in  The d e s i r e  expansion  of  scarcity  reforms extremely  bodies of  groups to gain c o n t r o l  resources  was  fact  Democracy  s y s t e m from t h e  group  in  an  p o s i t i o n s and made a l l While  government  impact,  the  yielded  some  strategy  on a l a r g e  change  improvements  in  the  decrees  The  scale In  for  field  of  the  as  to o b s t r u c t  of  meagre  previous  Basic  rural  a  the  their  Swanirvar  government the  entire  expected local  a  small  areas.  This  threat  regulations  1980, B a n g l a d e s h was  in  system  and  of  which the  position  efforts  success.  taken a c c o r d i n g l y . another  in  initiative  the  available  p r e - i n d e p e n d e n c e days had l e f t  advantageous  g r o u p v i e w e d any change  that  was  difficult.  I n t e n s e c o m p e t i t i o n among l o c a l r e i n f o r c e d by t h e  political  participate  local  resources  government  the  to  But  local  officials,  increased  s u p p o s e d t o a b s o r b t h o s e demands. made  local  ineffective.  Bangladesh  rose,  designing democratic  through  government  rural  of  to  their  implementation.  failed  t o make any  Bangladesh decided  use  the  country,  and s t e p s  were  was  the  to  on bring  government.  to  Andolon  brink  about  of  major  87  NOTES 1  Syed G. Ahmed, " L o c a l Government i n B a n g l a d e s h . and Priorities," L o c a l Government Q u a r t e r l y , I, 1 9 7 2 ) , p. 25.  2  C o n s t i t u t i o n of A r t i c l e 59 (1 ).  3  The B a n g l a d e s h G a z e t t e  4  D e p a r t m e n t of P u b l i c a t i o n s , Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh . " E n d of a b a t t l e b e g i n n i n g of another." Address t o t h e n a t i o n by Bangabandhu S h e i k h M u j i b u r Rahman on t h e o c c a s i o n of N a t i o n a l D a y , 1973.  5  D e p a r t m e n t of P u b l i c a t i o n s , Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh . " P o p u l a r m o b i l i z a t i o n not t e r r o r i s m t h e path of revolution." Inaugural A d d r e s s of Bangabandhu S h e i k h Mujibur Rahman at the Biennial Council Session of B a n g l a d e s h Awami League on J a n u a r y 18, 1974.  6  S.K. C h a k r a b a r t i , The E v o l u t i o n of P o l i t i c s i n B a n g l a d e s h , 1947-1978 (New D e l h i : A s s o c i a t e d P u b l i s h i n g House, 1978), p. 226.  7  T. Maniruzzaman, "Bangladesh in 1975: The Fall Mujib Regime and Its Aftermath," Asian Survey, ( F e b r u a r y 1976) , p. 1 21 .  8  Tariq (London:  9  See T u s h a r K. Barua, P o l i t i c a l P e t e r L a n g , 1978), Chapter I.  10  A.Z.M. Obaidullah Khan and Shahed Latif, "Rural Development i n B a n g l a d e s h . P r o b l e m s and P r o s p e c t s , " Local Government Q u a r t e r l y , 2, 2 (June 1 9 7 3 ) , see p p . 11-25.  11  Ibid  .,  p.  '12  Ibid  .,  pp.  13  See R. Sobhan, B a s i c D e m o c r a c i e s , Works Programme and R u r a l Development i n E a s t P a k i s t a n (Dacca: Bureau of E c o n o m i c R e s e a r c h , U n i v e r s i t y of D a c c a , 1 9 6 8 ) .  14  Khan and Latif, op. c i t . , p. 18. A l s o Azer A l i , Rural D e v e l o p m e n t i n B a n g l a d e s h ( C o m i l l a : B a n g l a d e s h Academy for R u r a l Development, 1975), pp. 43-4.  the  People's .  Republic  June 3 0 ,  of  Bangladesh,  1973, A r t i c l e  Ali, P a k i s t a n : M i l i t a r y R u l e or J o n a t h a n C a p e , 1 9 7 0 ) , p. 129. Elite  Concerns 2 (June 1972.  11.  of the 16, 2  People's  in Bangladesh  Power  (Berne:  12. 23-4.  88  15  Khan and L a t i f ,  16  The B a n g l a d e s h T i m e s  , December 2 2 ,  17  Khan and L a t i f ,  c i t . , p.  18  Mahbub Alam C h a s h i , " S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r . " Bengali, presented at Meher Panchagram, C o m i l l a . ] (November 2 6 - 3 0 , 1 9 8 0 ) , p. 2.  19  Shawkat Ali, " S w a n i r v a r : R e v i v a l of P o p u l i s t T r a d i t i o n of Rural Development," The J o u r n a l of S o c i a l S t u d i e s , 12 ( A p r i l 1 9 8 1 ) , p. 72.  20  Ibid.,  21  For some c r i t i c i s m s of t h e S w a n i r v a r programme, see S h a i k h Maqsood A l i , " S e l f - r e l i a n c e [Swanirvar] Movement in the 1980s The Social Worker as Change Agents," A d m i n i s t r a t i v e S c i e n c e R e v i e w , 9, 2 (June 1 9 7 9 ) , e s p e c i a l l y pp. 81-3.  22  M.A.  23  S h a i k h M.  24  M.A.  25  M.A. Chashi, "Three Years of Swanirvar, 1976-78." Unpublished paper. Quoted in Shaikh Maqsood A l i , "The Sense and S e n s i b i l i t y of S w a n i r v a r G r a m - S a r k a r Format for Rural Development," A d m i n i s t r a t i v e S c i e n c e Review, 9, 4 (December 1 9 7 9 ) , p. 24.  26  S h a i k h M. A l i , " T h e Sense G r a m - S a r k a r , " p. 25.  27  M.A.  28  Shaikh 85.  29  M.M. Khan and H.M. Zafarullah, "Innovation in Government in Bangladesh," Asian P r o f i l e , 9, 5 1 9 8 1 ) , p. 448.  30  Speech of A.H.M. Noman, Member, National Swanirvar Committee at the National Institute of Public A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , D h a k a , J a n u a r y 1980. Quoted i n Shaikh M. Ali, " T h e Sense and S e n s i b i l i t y of S w a n i r v a r G r a m - S a r k a r , p. 25.  31  Shawkat  p.  op.  op.  c i t . , pp.  18-19. 1982.  24. [A p a p e r i n Shahrasti,  75.  Chashi,  "Swanirvar  Ali,  Chashi,  Chashi, M.  Ali,  op.  c i t . , pp.  "Swanirvar  "Swanirvar  Ali,  op.  Gram S a r k a r , "  cit.,  p.  86.  p.  5.  Sensibility  Gram S a r k a r , "  "Self-reliance  4.  86-7.  Gram S a r k a r , "  and  p.  p.  Movement  of  Swanirvar  5. i n the  1 9 8 0 s , " p. Village (October  89  32  M.A.  Chashi,  33  S h a i k h M. 91 .  Ali,  34  Ibid.,  92.  35  Interview w i t h Mr. M o n o t o s h D a s , C o o r d i n a t o r of Bangladesh . D h a k a , J u l y 10, 1982.  36  M.A.  37  F i l m s and P u b l i c a t i o n D i v i s i o n , Government of t h e People's Republic of Bangladesh . "Bangladesher Unnati Kebol S w a n i r v a r A n d o l o n e r Madhyamei Hotey P a r e y " [ B a n g l a d e s h can prosper only t h r o u g h t h e S w a n i r v a r movement]. A d d r e s s of t h e P r e s i d e n t and d i s c u s s i o n s d u r i n g h i s v i s i t t o Naldanga u n i o n i n Rangpur d i s t r i c t on J u l y 5 and 6, 1979.  38  Interview  39  Government of the P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of B a n g l a d e s h , The Local Government Ordinance, 1976 (Dacca: Bangladesh Government P r e s s , 1 9 7 6 ) , A r t i c l e s 8 and 4 0 .  40  The L o c a l  41  See A r t i c l e s 69, 7 0 , O r d i n a n c e , 1976.  42  Ali Ahmed, A d m i n i s t r a t i o n of L o c a l S e l f - G o v e r n m e n t f o r Rural Areas in Bangladesh (Dhaka: Local Government I n s t i t u t e , 1 9 7 9 ) , p. 174.  43  M. Rashiduzzaman, "Bangladesh in 1977: Dilemmas of the M i l i t a r y R u l e r s , " A s i a n S u r v e y , 18, 2 ( F e b r u a r y 1 9 7 8 ) , p p . 127-8.  44  M.M. Khan and H.M. Z a f a r u l l a h , "The E l e c t i o n s in Bangladesh." Asian Survey, 1 9 7 9 ) , p. 1033.  1979 19,  45  Government of the S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r I n s t i t u t e , 1 9 8 0 ) , p.  of Bangladesh , Local Government  46  A z i z u l H a q u e , " B a n g l a d e s h i n 1980: S t r a i n s and S t r e s s e s Opposition i n the D o l d r u m s , " A s i a n Survey, 21, 2 (February 1 9 8 1 ) , p. 192.  47  Far  Eastern  Economic Review  , June 6 1980, p.  28.  48  Far  Eastern  Economic Review  , June 6 1980, p.  28.  p.  Chashi,  " S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r , " "Self-reliance  Movement  " S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r , "  w i t h Mr.  Monotosh Das.  Government O r d i n a n c e ,  9.  i n the  p.  1976.  1980s,"  Article  Swanirvar  10, 1982.  68.  the L o c a l  Republic (Dhaka:  p.  11.  Dhaka, J u l y  7 1 , 72 and 73 of  People's Manual V.  p.  Government  Parliamentary 10 (October  90  P l a n n i n g C o m m i s s i o n , Government o f t h e P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of Bangladesh, The S e c o n d F i v e Y e a r P l a n 1980-85 [Draft] (Dacca: n . p . , 1 9 8 0 ) , p. XII-97.  91  IV.  GRAM SARKAR IN THE POLITICAL CONTEXT: L E G I S L A T I O N , STRUCTURES AND FUNCTIONS  THE EMERGENCE  OF  Politics series  (AL)  the m i l i t a r y  were its  in  Bangladesh  entered  coups  and  countercoups  from power.  For  got  in p o l i t i c s .  of m i l i t a r y  League  the  liberation killed  party),  military  to e s t a b l i s h  Minister the  had of  President  after  government's  well  coup  district  administration." of  Within three  independence,  his  party  the the  of  source of  months, however,  AL,  also  few.  It  parties,  of  the  Ahmed, was  a  1975.  the  former  installed  as  The  Mushtaq  "dropped the  district  retention  of  the  announced  f o r c e d to  resign  original  head o f  dates  and h o l d i n g g e n e r a l  he was  the  leadership.  t h e AL as head of  cabinet,  August,  Mushtaq  activities  or  national  ended ' w i t h  w i t h Deputy C o m m i s s i o n e r s as t h e  political  lost  alternative  (JSD,  Mushtaq  Rahman's  were  2  of  family  capable  with  political  leaders  scheme and o r d e r e d t h e  districts  Awami  The AL had  to  A  1  Khondakar  nineteen  Dal  credible  Mujibur  the  and  effectiveness  dissident  the  Rahman  country  organized  only  achievements  reorganization  revival  its  failed.  Sheikh  since  in p o p u l a r i t y  C o l o n e l Abu T a h e r .  the  time  1975.  The u n d i s p u t e d l e a d e r  Samajtantrik  and  in  removed  political  the  p r o b a b l y next  became  government  was no o t h e r  Jatiya  t h e a b s e n c e of  first  new phase  young army o f f i c e r s .  provide  discredit  e x e c u t i o n of  Attempts  to  The  into  In  and t h e r e  enough  the  a  Sheikh Mujibur  by a g r o u p of  leadership. socialist  involved  movement,  popularity  resourceful  fell  ZIA  for  the the  elections. following  92  a  second m i l i t a r y  non-political  coup in e a r l y  leadership,  were examined by t h e Justice  of  the  play few  services, prominent  years.  roles  not a  the  officers.  the  the  the c o u r s e  new l e a d e r Justice  in o f f i c e  and  services,  Bangladesh  struggle  of  as  of  the  action  to  chiefs  of  over  was  the  to  next  developing  Law  Deputy  the c o u n t r y  Zia  1975  officers  were  be f o l l o w e d .  Ziaur  was  was  the  killed  Rahman  (Zia)  well,  of  allowed  to  Administrator Chief  As  By  were  a n d , as  President,  t h e army was t h e most p r o m i n e n t t h e army c h i e f ,  the  continued  officers  General  Martial as  since  senior  armed f o r c e s  the  the C h i e f  However,  the  Major  Sayem,  service  Administrators. Law  Members  bureaucracy  Chief  Sayem was  s e c o n d c o u p and a c o u n t e r c o u p took p l a c e .  from  three  of  the  A.S.M.  The h i g h - r a n k i n g  service.  continue  Ultimately,  President.  of  bureaucracy,  who had e n g i n e e r e d t h e A u g u s t  or  Bangladesh.  the  Bangladesh,  a power  1975, some of  emerged as  coup.  and t h e  m i d d l e of November removed  and  sources  groups.  officers  about  Two o t h e r  b e i n g t h e most o r g a n i z e d and p o w e r f u l ,  armed f o r c e s ,  senior  the  of  the other  i n agreement  result,  the  in the p o l i t i c s  some j u n i o r  and t h e  of  judiciary  The m i l i t a r y ,  W i t h i n the  coup,  office  the  r e m a i n e d ahead of  between  leaders  judiciary  Supreme C o u r t of  a s k e d t o assume t h e armed  the  November.  with  Martial under  Martial  b r a n c h among t h e  became t h e most p o w e r f u l  Law  armed  person  in  Bangladesh. Zia control. that  rose  to  Most  the of  o c c a s i o n and soon had t h e t h e JSD  d i s c i p l i n e had been  leaders  restored  situation  were a r r e s t e d , in  the  army.  and i t There  under seemed were  93  attempts and i n the  by  local  some a r e a s ,  followers  Indian border.  However,  and t o o k which  over  as  showed  supported  the  the  his  over  has  Zia  It  by t h e the  fact  that  or  practice never  of  But  opponents  of  government. the are  continue  in  the the  willing in  Zia  this  Their  regime;  political to  of  the  the  the  not  of  elected  parties,  mainly  that  the  be won  over  may be due  t o power  fact,  after  the  democratic  local  leaders want  to  government  the  known t o  the  marked  as  work  not  for  care  leaders and  has  level,  be  they  does  local  are  to  being  through e l e c t i o n s  the  part,  which  t h e s e members had  publicly,  its  voters  endorsement  can e a s i l y  power  the  activities  support  of  newly  changeability  At  thus, for  referendum  factors  political  In  most of do  a  overwhelming  returned  Bangladesh.  leaders  problems,  T h i s demonstrates  3  transferring  of  these  cent the  in Bangladesh  The g o v e r n m e n t , past  per of  Bangladesh.  affiliations  villagers.  they  in  of  He c a l l e d  a majority"  (ML).  group.  peacefully  taken p l a c e  political  about  to  no r e g i m e has y e t  removed from o f f i c e  from a c r o s s  with other  leadership  r u l i n g party  launched r a i d s  must be n o t e d t h a t  been a f f i l i a t e d  government  government,  1977.  One  t h e AL and t h e M u s l i m League local  the  ninety-nine  attributed  subvert  survived a l l  in  " u n q u a l i f i e d s u p p o r t of  past  to  of M u j i b  leadership.  U n i o n P a r i shad members. in the  parties  President  that  Rashiduzzaman was  political  the much  so l o n g  help  it  as to  power.  tried  to u t i l i z e  the v i l l a g e  leaders  workshops,  and  closer  training  this to  the  sentiment  by a r r a n g i n g  government  through  programmes c o n d u c t e d a t  the  to  bring  seminars, capital.  94  Soon,  a  number  allegiance  to  of Zia  local  leaders  i n s t e a d of  p r o b l e m s p l a g u e d Z i a as he Martial that  Law.  there  were  indiscipline resentment  outside  q u e s t i o n s about  evident  This  could only  w h i c h would be a b l e  Parliament.  Since  legislators,  Zia  accomplish t h i s  the  had  reports that  to  local  Parishads  It  the  to  areas  start  clear  army.  could result  in  The  in  l e a d e r s h i p of  the  public  military  the  legitimacy  secure a majority  rural  many under  1977 made i t  be a c h i e v e d by o r g a n i z i n g a  laws r e l a t i n g  (village the  1976 " t o  institutions  also  d e v e l o p m e n t of  country  of v i o l e n c e  establish  to  i n November,  government  0  But  rural  of  of  base his  political  seats  in  the  would  elect  most of  the  the  rural  voters  to  wooing  objective.  and amend c e r t a i n areas."  in  their  Z i a had t o have a power  The L o c a l Government O r d i n a n c e , President  the  party.  the  within  among t h e m i l i t a r y  t h e armed f o r c e s  regime. party  became  rule  groups  T h e r e were f r e q u e n t It  to  coup attempt  dissatisfied  prevalent  announcing  t o any p o l i t i c a l  tried  abortive  and r a i s e  officers. areas.  An  started  provide in  rural to  a u t h o r i z e d the councils) village.  5  1976  for  was  for  the  areas  local  by  constitution  and t o  in  to c o n s t i t u t e  purpose  the of  consolidate  government  government the  made  of  such Gram  overall  95  THE BANGLADESH NATIONALIST After the  securing  referendum h e l d  Jatiyatabadi  formed  was  Peking),  the  Tapshili  Front).  Jote  People's  League,  April  and Jatiya  Janata  Zia, the  candidate  the  democratic  of of  Awami  afterwards,  Party  the AL,  in  Party  the  the  (BNP)  the p a r t y  was  or  Party, polled  and about  election  (Retired)  formed i n  (JF  (pro-Moscow),  JF,  The  In  the  Gonotantrik  cabinet.  election.  pro-  and  presidential  Mujib  in  JAGODAL  Front  Sramik  General  party  (NAP,  ML  the  the  the  Zia  The  t h e NAP  of  in  presidential  the  Krishak  t h e GOJ, the  of  year.  (UPP),  candidate  months a f t e r  Bangladesh N a t i o n a l i s t Shortly  called  ordered  same  Party,  votes  a f o r m e r member few  party  the J a t i y a t a b a d i  included  defeating  a  Zia  Party it  leadership  leadership  National  and c a l l e d  of  dissolved  the  the  the  his  nationalist  1978,  People's  three-quarters  Osmany,  (the  under  with  League.  the  for  The o p p o s i t i o n was c a l l e d  (GOJ)  Jatiya  Dal  i n June of  United  Federation  Nationalist  the  In  coalition  support  1977, a new p o l i t i c a l  organized  t o be h e l d  a  Oikka  in  1978.  elections  overwhelming  Gonotantrik  o r JAGODAL) February  PARTY  its  M.A.G. JF  was  place,  September  a n n o u n c e d a wide r a n g e  of  the  1978. socio-  e c o n o m i c programmes. The  leadership  ML,  t h e NAP  as  well  number of were  the  BNP  i n c l u d e d f o r m e r members of  ( b o t h pro-Moscow and p r o - P e k i n g  as  military  officers  in  directly the  into  parliamentary  factions),  and members of  b u s i n e s s m e n and e x e c u t i v e s  inducted  candidates  of  from  the  the c a b i n e t . elections  of  the  the  the  AL,  judiciary.  private  The BNP  A  sector  f i e l d e d 298  1979, and 207  were  96  elected. support  Zia's of  wanted i n  his the  connection BNP.  cabinet,  their  the  split  Only  However,  it  history  of  the  Outside  of  BNP  base  present  a concrete  a nineteen-point the  plan.  its  levels  of  administration;  the  to  personal  Mujib's  image,  other  in  the  first  needed  to  electorate,  establish  in  strengthen t o make curse  order  included, a  all  the  among  spheres  to  make  the  BNP p o p u l a r  in  country  self-  to  administration.  the  rural  and  economy by  illiteracy;  rural-oriented  to  self-reliant  rural  the  a  prepared  be i m p l e m e n t e d t h r o u g h a w e l l - o r g a n i z e d  expected  decentralize  of  In  Z i a had  points  participation  Zia's  the  t h e members of  steps  machine w i t h a s t r o n g b a s e .  along  in  and t o  only  the  Parliament.  population growth; could  for  political  time  t o make B a n g l a d e s h  remove t h e  group  parties.  nineteen  to  the  demonstrated  number of  BNP  to a g r i c u l t u r e ;  food;  the  for  Sheikh  continued existence.  goals:  to ensure p e o p l e ' s  in  the  The  nation;  sufficient  opposition  programme t o  top p r i o r i t y  for  , a substantial  for  following  Zia's  direct  larger  of  in he  up 295 c a n d i d a t e s  in a strong p o s i t i o n  be n o t e d t h a t  seats  and t h e  f o r m e r members o f  Parliament,  support  factions,  Thus,  little  won t h e  The AL-MU p u t  7  candidates  whom had v e r y  a former M i n i s t e r  Zia.  belonged to  strong  giving  two  by t h e  Bangladesh  the  other  39 were r e t u r n e d and t h i s  must a l s o  Parliament  others,  into  votes c a r r i e d put  and  many of  A b d u l Malek U k i l .  parties,  vigorous campaigning  constituencies  tremendous p o p u l a r i t y  the  Ministers  l e a d e r s h i p of  Parliament.  w i t h the  image and h i s  Parliament  to  came under  the  incumbent  The AL was  6  personal  check These party  policies areas.  The  were BNP  97  experienced  tension  came  conflict  into  leaders  left  Better  management  regime  the  and  the  the  divergent  with  BNP,  Zia  of  Zia's  increased  as  was  the  image  rural  one  elements  another.  within  Although  able  to  hold  economy  in  comparison  as  an  honest  electorate's  the  some  party  prominent  party  and  trust.in  the  together.  to  the  previous  dedicated  the  leader  a b i l i t i e s  of  the  limited,  of  the  government. The  growing  Swanirvar in  Bangladesh  different  viable  parts  .  In  organizations parties.  The  claimed  that  1976.  In  his  elected  time  their  in  within  a  The Floods, urban  f a l l  in  of  mapped  as  and  power,  period  well  government high  make  as  faced  prices class,  and  of  of  the  out  of  a  9  party  preparations  BNP  scheme  in  through AL  villages.  for  had  also At  the  plans  to  multilateral Zia  introduce was  Rab  The  8  forming  to  Abdur  elected  leaders  easier  the  Sarkar  the  in  p o l i t i c a l  A.S.M.  be  a  village-based  other  v i l l a g e r s . rule  was  development  by  to  villages  provided  elected  Gram  after It  have  JSD,  was  the to  the  since  the  to rural  forming  council  presence  v i l l a g e s .  of  self-reliant  contemplated  village  from  the  party  middle  idea  Secretary had  the  appeared  problems  been  however  developing  representatives  short  government  in  administration  cooperatives his  also  the  decentralize  to  the  party  i t ,  wanted  idea  fact,  success,  country  the  General  franchise  of  the  to  had  and  Andolon  of  solution  Bangladesh  adult  popularity  in  to  s e l l  the  control  the  system of  the  legislature. several  problems  essential  inflation  around  commodities,  were  too  much  this a  to  time.  d i s s a t i s f i e d be  handled  98  efficiently  at  e x p a n s i o n of  the  social  one  values  order  all  time.  number and  over  the  in  widespread  disorders  under  time it  in  the  from  the  a  rallying  format i o n . Early belonging assist  in  districts April  rural  of  in  areas  and  violence, action  was  pressure  was  which  base.  the  little  He t r i e d  According  BNP had of  within  t o do  village-  decentralization.  opinion"  by  The government  propounding  Rahman,  and  unrest,  T h e r e was v e r y  power  to  the  BNP  implementing and  as D i s t r i c t different  to e n t e r t a i n  i n May.  Development  development  "emerged  functioning a year  to  set  of  its  spokesman s a i d t h a t  "its  main o b j e c t i v e  in  taking  Zia  station  for  care  the  i n a u g u r a t e d a Gram S a r k a r i n Dhaka  district.  Coordinators  was  to  local  in  at  1 2  in  On  each  a m e e t i n g of  and an foster  official  leadership  problems."  in a v i l l a g e  to the  complaints.  taken  Commissioners,  of  Parliament  Gram S a r k a r  The d e c i s i o n was Deputy  the v i l l a g e s  up  of  schemes  and p r o c e s s p u b l i c  and  police  1 0  1980, Z i a a p p o i n t e d twenty members  starting  30,  law  1 1  Commissioners  April  armed  sides,  Zia's  public  the  political  based o r g a n i z a t i o n c a p a b l e  forum  of  the  eroded  political  and  all  Shah A z i z u r  16, he a n n o u n c e d p l a n s  village the  rural  of  Tracts.  and programmes of  Prime M i n i s t e r ,  landless,  was  coup a t t e m p t .  t o expand and s t r e n g t h e n  as a w e l l - k n i t as  Chittagong H i l l  remote  and  There  prisons,  pressure  oriented policies to  in  along . with  in a d e t e r i o r a t i o n  outbursts  by t h e a b o r t i v e  by v i s i t i n g  problems,  unemployed  country.  strikes,  tremendous  aggravated  of  resulted  expressed  "miscreants"  These  under  1 3  On  Savar  99  Meanwhile,  the  draft  of  B a n g l a d e s h p u b l i s h e d i n May corporate system  of  local  have a v i l l a g e  development."  the  Thus,  a  a  view  The v i l l a g e  issue  plans  being  in  the  implemented  Parliament  for  level  a  hierarchical  to  undertaking  government  was  to  implement  it  as  The D r a f t  had been d i s c u s s e d and d e b a t e d were  representatives  d i s t u r b i n g ownership.  Plan  village  within  l a n d and employment p l a n and t o  as p o s s i b l e w i t h o u t  that  with  F i v e Year  that  be c r e a t e d  government  rural  Second  1980 s t a t e d  body was p r o p o s e d " t o  comprehensive  far  the  for  two  even  claimed years. " 1  before  the  to d i s c u s s  the  a p p e a r e d t o be aimed  at  had a c h a n c e  i s s u e and make d e c i s i o n s . Political setting  up  activities  a  network  nineteen-points problems of  BNP t o o k of  and  Zia  governments  areas  the  to  his  highlighted  gatherings  the  BNP  the  it  rural  The  to the  BNP.  Zia's  answer  to a t t r a c t  emphasizing  The s t r a t e g y  to  efforts  Bangladeshi  s u c c e e d e d and  to appeal  negligence in  the  remote a r e a s . take p o l i t i c s  the  politicians  belonged to p o l i t i c a l  conditions  in the  the  regime's  by  the  BNP was d e t e r m i n e d t o  r e p l a c e d by e l e c t e d levels.  the  In  improve  and b r i n g In  to  through  The aim was  self-reliance.  ideologies.  electorate,  that  control  i n members who p r e v i o u s l y  various  addressed  of  Bangladesh.  inclinations  nationalism  the c e n t r e  were p l a y e d up as  facing  various  at  to of  parties  the the  villages  of  rural  previous when  He r e p e a t e d l y out  the  he  stated  the  urban  villages.  areas,  the  bodies at  p o s i t i o n s of  the  Basic the  Democracies union,  Basic  thana  s y s t e m had been and  district  D e m o c r a t s were o c c u p i e d by  100  members of  the  independence, rural  power  relief w i t h the  structure.  s u p p o r t e r s of  The AL had a l w a y s  urban  rural  local was  as  their  The  1971  end  changes.  members of  g r o u p of  and t h e retained  the  upward m o b i l i t y by  extend  its  bring these  in  in  leaders  traumas  countercoups  of  which Z i a was  the a u t h o r i t y  of  the  of  Basic  face  in  the  the of  areas. and soon  farmers  the  in  farmers  interests  however,  leaders  became of  local  bring  along with  some  the  fore  local  bodies.  tensions  the  d i d not  in  i n most v i l l a g e s , in  areas  and  close  to the  thus  described  reforms.  took  politics, group  f r o m some of  use s u c h g r o u p s  to  various  to  steps  government. was h a r d l y  Bangladesh  liberation  war,  shook t h e  society  in c o n t r o l ,  there  government.  the  there  The  resulting  The BNP d e c i d e d t o  in the  members and c o n t i n u e d a c c u m u l a t i o n  rural  the  after  Democrats.  surplus  surplus  AL r u l e ,  Thus,  rural  entrepreneurs  neglected  them t o  AL  advantage  the  interest  1977.  the  the  scenario  seemed t h a t  their  w i t h some e x p e r i e n c e  among i t s  i n t r o d u c t i o n of major from t h e  of  the a f f l u e n t . base  i n the  B a s i c D e m o c r a c i e s came t o  elected  control  wealth  to  1975, t h e  the  the  c o m m i t t e e s were d o m i n a t e d by  The same g r o u p of  leaders  villagers  The  to  of  council elections a  the  by  change o c c u r r e d  predecessors,  represented  From  poor.  former  The r e l i e f  1 5  and t h e AL g e n e r a l l y  a b o u t major  little  and p r o f e s s i o n a l s and s m a l l  areas.  affluent  that  t o use t h e c o m m i t t e e s  as a f f l u e n t  the v i l l a g e s  result  t h e AL who had some i n f l u e n c e  They were a b l e became  committees c o n s t i t u t e d  conducive  had not y e t  to  recovered  nor  from the  coups  after  1975.  Even when  were a t t e m p t s  The government  to  the  and it  undermine  was composed of  101  leaders  of  diverse  contradicted to allow out  one  ideological another.  orientations,  The s i t u a t i o n  complete d e c e n t r a l i z a t i o n .  for  subversive  sufficiently resources  activities.  from p r e v i o u s  for  local  not  institutions. major and  in the  increase  institutions  would f o r m f a c t i o n s and t h e  local  As began  the to  the  Zia  parliamentary  among  support  time,  he had t o  be  bitter  number of  rural  the  to  BNP  Bangladesh  organize  base  for  settle  enough well.  poor,  rule  village  struggle of  the  over  resources  influentials  available  resources  inevitable  conflicts  leadership.  The  the  number  themselves  the p a r t y  Zia's  challenges  capable  introducing  to  major  in  need  an to  the p a r t y  the  the  As  the to  establish  a  At  and  electorate  that  changes, e s p e c i a l l y  to the v i l l a g e s ,  of  the  same  and d i s c i p l i n e  BNP  for  1979  attempt  b o t h from w i t h i n  S i n c e he d i d not have c o n c r e t e p l a n s institutions  Sanqsad.  became c r i t i c a l .  t o m a i n t a i n a good image f o r  Z i a had t o p r o v e  largest  Jatiya  c o n f l i c t s within  Encountering  government  of  over  scarcity  the  returned  and o u t s i d e ,  areas.  control  BNP's c l a i m to power,  solid  of  recovered  perform  their a  look  Democracy and AL  Due t o t h e  the  elections  the  position.  to  regime c o n t i n u e d in power,  tried  some l e a d e r s  Basic  t o g a i n c o n t r o l of  o p p o s i t i o n members t o  challenge  enough  institutions.  emerge  opposition  surrender  villages.  in  stable  The economy had not  T h e r e was bound t o  changes an  to  which  slumps t o p e r m i t a l l o c a t i o n  government  going  was not  of  The government had t o  The d o m i n a n t g r o u p s from t h e d a y s of were  some  in  his the he  own party was  the  rural  extending  local  he d e c i d e d t o draw upon  1 02  the e x i s t i n g s t r u c t u r e Swanirvar  decision  demonstrated the  weeks  after  the  the Bangladesh G a z e t t e Gram S a r k a r s  (Constitution  Sarkar  every  village.  the a u t h o r i t y  to declare  convene  meeting  a  consisting  of  the  voters'  urgency  to  execute the  first  down  of  rural  the  residents  for  the  Rules,  of  a  Gram Shava the  village  Gram Shava  whose names  was  whom a t  to  choose  least  a Gram P r a d h a n  two would be  women.  present  at  the meeting " i n  The r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of  was t h r e e  years  was  given  and  to  assembly) appeared  the C O .  for  eleven Gram  s u c h a manner a s may be a g r e e d  upon".  from  "all  life"  and  g r o u p s " was t o be e n s u r e d .  The  t h e Gram S a r k a r The t e r m of  from t h e d a t e  t e r m and f i v e y e a r s  and  people  people  t h r o u g h c o n s e n s u s of by  Gram  the  functional/interest  signed  of  The  w o u l d be c h o s e n a c c o r d i n g t o t h e c o n s e n s u s of  and  was  village,  Sarkar  "different  1980  (CO.)  (village  ,  Swanirvar  formation  area  plans.  Gram S a r k a r  c o n t a i n i n g the  The C i r c l e O f f i c e r  any  the  list.  o t h e r members, of  choice  the  go ahead w i t h t h e p r o p o s e d  and A d m i n i s t r a t i o n )  were l a i d  in  to  (Extraordinary)  Rules  The  c o u n c i l s o r g a n i z e d by  i n a u g u r a t i o n of  published.  on t h e  village  OF SWANIRVAR GRAM SARKAR  government's  Gram S a r k a r s Three  the  Bangladesh Andolan.  THE ESTABLISHMENT The  of  of  its  walks  was t o  office  first  subsequent terms.  of  of  be  t h e Gram  meeting f o r The  recorded Sarkar  the  Gram S a r k a r  first was  1 03  to  assume  office  within  thirty  days  m e e t i n g t o be a p p o i n t e d by t h e C O . for  a Gram P r a d h a n  he/she  or  of  its  selection  The r e q u i r e d  a member of Gram S a r k a r  at  a  qualifications  were  as  follows;  the  concerned  must  (a)  be a c i t i z e n  (b)  have  (c)  be  of  attained listed  Bangladesh;  t h e age of on  the  twenty-five  electoral  years;  roll  of  village; (d)  not be a s i t t i n g Union P a r i shad;  (e)  reside  necessary  in p a r t i c u l a r ,  to  for  overall  (b)  Mass  (c)  Population  (d)  Law and o r d e r ,  in  Pradhan."  control  of  minutes  of  for  shall The r u l e s  1 8  "such  development  functions of  the  as  village  it and,  literacy; and f a m i l y  and s e t t l i n g provided  issued thereunder,  office  kept  undertake  1 6  food p r o d u c t i o n ;  " S a v e and o t h e r w i s e  Sarkar  village.  for  Increase  Gram  in the  was  (a)  direction  a  and  permanently  The Gram S a r k a r considers  member o r C h a i r m a n of  the  vest also  months t o  review  Sarkar.  It  in  purpose.  was  local  in  and  be  the  within  powers  there  the  village,  a  by  in  its  Gram be  an  and t h a t  the  in  was t o meet of  t o be c o n v e n e d by t h e Gram P r a d h a n  any  Swanirvar  would  recorded  activities  1 7  or  of  that  The Gram Shava the  rules  exercised  c o u n c i l be  t h e p r o g r e s s of  and  disputes."  these  executive  stipulated  Gram S a r k a r  t h e m e e t i n g s of this  the  planning;  a  book  every  three  the  Gram  stating  the  104  date,  time  discussed. (a)  and p l a c e 1 9  of  The f i n a n c i a l  contributions Samiti  "The control  other  government  could  through  officers  case  its of  to  d i s p u t e s between  Prescribed  are  in  the  Prescribed  Subdivisional in  the  in the  decision  2 0  supervision  these  that  rules."  of  In  the  for  the p a r t i e s  will  to  2 1  its The  t h e Gram S a r k a r some  matter  relation  and  was  time. between to  be  concerned  Swanirvar  be  the  of  if  if  if  the  parties  same s u b d i v i s i o n ;  same the  districts  the Government, in d i f f e r e n t  the  of  if  Officer,  Commissioner,  in d i f f e r e n t  and  any  to ensure  the c o u n c i l  Authority,  be  Authority.  concerned are  (e)  in order  parishad,  the Deputy C o m m i s s i o n e r ,  the  or  general  t h e Thana P a r i s h a d  concerned are  (d)  be:  source.  the a f f a i r s  same t h a n a .  Gram S a r k a r ,  were t o  two or more Gram S a r k a r s or  local  the  to  and  legitimate  and s u p e r s e d e  (a)  (c)  into  agenda  Gram Samabay  authority;  purposes  enquire  to:  the  societies)  exercise-  the  referred  the  local  shall  Gram S a r k a r s and any  (b)  cooperative  a S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r  conform  and  s o u r c e s of Gram S a r k a r  income from any  activities  In  or  government  over  meeting  from i n d i v i d u a l s ,  ( village  institution (b) ,any  the  the  if  the  parties  district; parties  within parties  the  concerned  are  same d i v i s i o n ;  concerned  and  are  divisions; the  authority  to which  t h e d i s p u t e was  so  1 05  referred  w o u l d be  final.  The government  had l a i d  o p e r a t i n g Gram S a r k a r officials the  to  play  b o u n d a r i e s of  meeting  of  the  in  case  of  down t h e  such  a  a prominent  a village  failure  for  or  i n a manner c o n t r a r y  rules  way  the  s u p e r s e s s i o n of  inability  to p u b l i c  interest,  Later,  w o u l d have t o depend on t h e  President  conclusion  of  was  functioning  of  Finally,  given  members  course absolute  the v i l l a g e  The  was p r e p a r e d t o timing  of  The a n n u a l  Budget  21  day.  the  Early  in  power.  The were  resources. for  funds. at  Ministry  of  to  into  look  The  the Local the  2 3  legislate  other  bills  were i n t r o d u c e d f o r  the day,  the  Dockworkers  the the  creation bill  to  controversial  had been b r o u g h t down a few  members were busy d i s c u s s i n g i t ,  1980, t h r e e  acting  Gram S a r k a r s  introducing  c o i n c i d e d w i t h a c o u p l e of  the  of  authority  Parliament  and  of  body  funds  government  that  councils.  duties,  required flow  Sarkar.  village  its  a  APPROVAL AND LEGISLATION a bill  Gram S a r k a r .  told  a training  Government  PARLIAMENTARY  Zia  t h e Gram  or abuse o f  a regular  guarantee  determine  convening  the  to discharge  and  government  could for  and c o n s t i t u t i n g  vague,  Gram S a r k a r  allow  responsible  s u p p l y the  d i d not  to  constituting  The C O .  s o u r c e s w h i c h were e x p e c t e d t o and  for  as  role.  , was  Gram Shava  T h e r e were p r o v i s i o n s in  2 2  days  of the  bills.  previously,  when s u d d e n l y on J u n e  legislation  on t h e  (Appointment  same  Control)  1 06  Bill for  was  placed  before  discussion for  to  consider  the House.  the day,  it  for  but  The b i l l  the M i n i s t e r  legislation.  was  asked  Several to  They c o u l d not  they  the  s u g g e s t any amendment b e c a u s e  bill.  The  u n p r e p a r e d and  passed  suggestion  six  of  the  share  House  of  members of the  bill,  the  strong  same d a y ,  appeal  of  some  o r d i n a n c e was  were not p a s s e d on t h a t  Committee  the  Cooperatives. and s t i f f made.  2  AL-MU w a l k e d  members  of  in a voice the  a Select  Local The b i l l  opposition.  No  law.  vote. be  even  legislated  The  leader  their  the  fair  Twelve of  House. " 2  1980  met  attempt  Previously,  the  to approve  the  The o p p o s i t i o n members circulated  Rural in  amendments  The  related  Act,  Committee as w e l l a s  Government, was  not  legislation  o p p o s i t i o n not  bill  bill.  T h i s was a n o t h e r a  the  the  date.  of  (Amendment)  into the  out  of  a  lose  the q u i c k  Parliament.  ordinance  nullified  on  the  members  hour.  voting.  d o c k w o r k e r s would  agenda  opposition  to approve  bill  in  and s e n t t o  an  the  t h e House s u g g e s t e d t h a t  opinion,  the  half  without  the M u n i c i p a l  an e a r l i e r  had  found  within  o p p o s i t i o n spoke a g a i n s t  opposition  to c o n v e r t  of  the  review  that  and one member of  On t h e  bill  was o v e r r u l e d  said  wages i f  the  party  o p p o s i t i o n members not  ordinance previously of  government  the  members  o p p o s i t i o n p r o t e s t e d and r e q u e s t e d more t i m e  read  on t h e  the  of  public  permanent  Development  spite or  for  bitter  modifications  and debate were  5  Later (Amendment) Choudhury,  on Act,  that  fateful  Saturday,  1980 was moved by C a p t a i n  the M i n i s t e r  for  the  Local  (Retired)  L o c a l Government,  Rural  Government Abdul  Halim  Development  1 07  and  Cooperatives.  Government  (Ordinance),  the c o n s t i t u t i o n of  local  The  of  government  through have  of  come i n t o Before  on s e l f - h e l p b a s i s  opposition,  moved l a t e r the  bill  Government the  21 ,  1 980.  was  2  day,  a village  so t h a t  1980.  interest  government perpetuate Mirza, at  moved,  the  the House.  general the  and  Deputy the It  practice  can in  otherwise,  Leader  bill  of  the  deserved a  long  should,  of  said  that  therefore, Budget  the  the  tenure  the  bill  of  of the  at  be not  through  leader  1980 would l a p s e  and demanded t h a t  was  rushing b i l l s  response,  Ordinance,  the  the  government  villagers.  in  the Local  midnight  be p a s s e d on June  the  BNP  seventy  and t o award  said  the  introducing  regarding  They e x p r e s s e d a p p r e h e n s i o n t h a t  the  a class  through  urged the  cent  of  full  autonomy t o  Union P a r i s h a d s  bill  "village  Gram S a r k a r s .  JSD,  the  of  the  the the  rule"  per  doubt  in  was p l a n n i n g t o c r e a t e  development that  tier  the v i l l a g e r s  d i s c u s s i o n on t h e  In  Rahman  a member from t h e  least  level  7  of of  for  2 6  The o p p o s i t i o n members e x p r e s s e d t h e i r sincerity  Local  The A c t would be deemed t o  Ahmed s a i d t h a t  (Amendment)  same  29,  government.  Azizur  the  t o making p r o v i s i o n  economically  Sarkars."  He c r i t i c i z e d  Shah  on  viable  d i s c u s s i o n in  t h e House by t h e  "amend  community p r o b l e m s and p a r t i c i p a t e  on A p r i l  on when t h e  way.  House,  Gram  Mohiuddin  and e l a b o r a t e  in  their  force  the  to  1976 w i t h a view  a society,  Swanirvar  intended  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r s ,  be made c o n s c i o u s of the c r e a t i o n  bill  government  national  were  touts Abdul  to  budget  Latif  allocate  for  village  t h e Gram S a r k a r s .  c o n t r o l l e d by  to  He  government  108  officials Another  and t h a t member  they  of  impeded t h e  the  JSD,  d i s a p p r o v a l motion against Sarkar.  He  a c c u s e d the  dictatorship. village  government  to  Parliament the  set  and  officials lists  ordinance  BNP of  But  up  that  he p r o t e s t e d  bodies.  had  moved  established  a  Gram  system to e s t a b l i s h a  opposed  to the  the  concept  steps  without  the a p p r o v a l  local  Siraj,  u s i n g the  Gram S a r k a r  without  Siraj  and  BNP  pointed leaders  of Gram S a r k a r  "consensus". government elected  taken  discussing  of t h e  of  by  the  it  in  representatives  resist  He c a l l e d  bodies.  cancelling there  Sarkars,  and  the  must  by  elimination creation be  s h o u l d have  playing  these  of  it  and d r a w i n g  of  his  of  different  Shahjahan  Gram S a r k a r  budget  to  Siraj  system,  He c o n c l u d e d for  for  as  authority  convenience. or  by  Gram S a r k a r s  adequate  the  up  t h e dominance of  officials.  with at  of  b o d i e s c o u l d not work  Ali  of  c o u n c i l s had o p e r a t e d his  group  institutions  government  the  the  Gram  welfare  of  2 8  Taleb  He e x p r e s s e d  of  representation  government  reviving  and t h a t  dangers  the v i l l a g e s  was no o r g a n i z e d s t r u c t u r e  A.B.M.  powerful  and f o r  Z i a was  villagers.  village  the  g r o u p s and t h e y  commented t h a t  the  going to  for  There  domination  out  members t o be a p p r o v e d by t h e v i l l a g e r s  officials  occupational  the  the  of  people. Shahjahan  that  Shahjahan  He s a i d he was not  governments.  operation  to  t h e AL-MU r e c o g n i z e d t h a t in  apprehension of  their  villagers advantage.  the  countryside  over  the  would  for  informal  many  possibility use  the  Gram  years. that  a  Sarkar  He a l s o d e t e c t e d an a t t e m p t  to  109  realize  the  Rafiqullah village not  proper  be  bill, All  but  to  no  to  a s s u r e d the  introduced  a  villages link  the  as  the  only  in  the  The amidst is  towns. Local  available  was  in  already  Parliament  for  introduced  was  society other  criticized  for  o p p o s i t i o n members  seeking  and  to  to  Zia  send  vote  in  it  the  the House.  the M i n i s t e r  the  for  In  Local  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r s  feuds".  He s a i d t h a t  believed  in taking p o l i t i c s  and had a l r e a d y  the  The M i n i s t e r bill  because  the  bill to  established said that  the  had  made  t h o s e who p r a c t i s e d p o l i t i c s  with  bases  3 0  (Amendment)  Gram S a r k a r  approval.  1980  o p p o s i t i o n members. voting  operation  Act,  when  None of  procedure  was No  the the  a l o n g w i t h two o t h e r  passed  information  followed  had been p l a n n e d , government  in  the  initiated  and  approached  the  s u g g e s t i o n s put  t h e o p p o s i t i o n members were i n c o r p o r a t e d was  this  Sixteen and  of  Zia  r e g a r d i n g the bill.  that  like  from t h e  House on t h i s  utility that  2 9  the debate  bill,  people.  Government  objections  the  inhabitants,  village  difficult  the  "political  o p p o s i t i o n members d i d not politics  in  by a v o i c e  House  President  and t h e i r  with  he t h o u g h t  such c h a n g e s .  bill  c r i t i c i s m of  would r e m a i n above  the  A.K.  avail.  o p i n i o n on t h e  the  scheme.  s u c h a scheme, and t h e  beforehand for  Committee were r e j e c t e d  Government  the  introduce  in the  admitted  But  o p p o s i t i o n took p a r t  public  response  was  to  BNP  t h e Gono F r o n t  t h e amendment m o t i o n s of  to e l i c i t Select  time  the  the  and g o v e r n m e n t .  prepared  members o f the  a m b i t i o n s of  Choudhury of  councils  the  must  political  i n the A c t .  controversial  forward The  bills  by  bill in  the  1 10  m i d d l e of  t h e d i s c u s s i o n on  determined  to  rush  the  them p a s s e d w i t h l i t t l e The  opposition  the  had  the  bills  Budget.  The  through the  opportunity  no s u c c e s s  for  in  government  legislature,  debate  or  was  and had  discussion.  s t o p p i n g or m o d i f y i n g any  of  bills.  SOME OBSERVATIONS The s e q u e n c e about  of  Gram S a r k a r  steps is  taken  by t h e  interesting.  government Instead  of  n o r m a l p r o c e d u r e of making p r o p o s a l s ,  legislating  formulating  of  rules,  leadership  of  the  constituting proposals draft  and  for  of  the  government  BNP  directly  operating  village  the  organizations  Second F i v e Y e a r  e s t a b l i s h i n g Gram S a r k a r government have i t s  was  installed  Two d a y s a f t e r a  training  the  course  (Secretaries).  He  but just  the  3 1  society.  3 2  establish as  said  insisted  of  and  under  the  rules  for  Next,  the  with  the  that,  the  bill  Parliament.  The  the v i l l a g e  the  bill,  councils  Zia  Pradhans  political  party  and  had  the  it  was  inaugurated  and  Sachibs  opportunists mandate  c o n t i n u e d to c r i t i c i z e  that  bill  published  the  the  leaders.  that  but h i s  the  After  Gram S a r k a r  Opposition leaders  government  were  Plan.  legislation  for  o p p o s i n g Gram S a r k a r , people.  to  the  government.  was p r e s e n t e d t o  in a hurry  supporters  down  bringing  following  Bangladesh  laid  local  in  essential  the to  were  of  the  scheme, build  a  111  The c r e a t i o n was  observed  the p o l i t i c s Harry  and  of  3  between  F o o d f o r Works  the  There  Integrated  avenues  corruption.  same d o m i n a n t  previously, affluent  and  rural  village  the  party  i n power Blair  development. interest within  a  structure  history  of  local  majority realized  had t h e that  new  level  by t h e  of  new  over  by  to  that  already  patronage  r u l i n g party for  so the  centre. that  all  these  Gram S a r k a r  regarded  groups that  the  institutions  diverted danger  the  and  c o u l d be t a k e n  the  sufficient, He  in  were p o s s i b i l i t i e s  T h e r e was a l s o  considered  not  vague  Works  of  local  the  Parishads,  Rural  expansion  be  local  too  c o u l d be u t i l i z e d a s a s u p p o r t b a s e  the  admitted  b u t he s t i l l although  at  of  could  the  against  Union  the  controlled  benefits  elites.  Programme,  There  that  levelled  and t h e  in  scientist,  be c o m p l i c a t i o n s  The Gram S a r k a r s  elites  elites  to  The pace  m i g h t be f u n n e l e d down t o that  bound  rapid.  political  programme a p p e a r e d  Development  too  institutions  involved d i r e c t l y  criticisms  the  were  Programme.  government  American  t h e Gram S a r k a r s  Rural  was  for  An  He a g r e e d t h a t  3  local  by p e o p l e not  considered various  relationships  institution  interest  Bangladesh.  nebulous.  the  village-based  with  Blair  Gram S a r k a r .  of  the  on t h e  opportunity initially  to  the  i n t i m i d a t e d and d o m i n a t e d by t h e  absolutely for  long  recognition  governance  government  an  condition  make up v i l l a g e of  c o n s e q u e n c e s were p o s s i b l e ,  society  of  the  their  poor v i l l a g e r s elite.  rural  different inclusion  advancement  subcontinent.  rural  term  and t h e i r  a s a major  voice  necessary,  in  The p o o r demands.  rural Blair  could probably But  over  the  be the  1 12  longer  term,  after  had been a c h i e v e d , interests  of  the  a higher  duties  poor.  of  each  was  t o be i n c h a r g e  of  members  Gram S a r k a r  fortnight the  i n f o r m the He  officials  to  be made by t h e  his  own.  He  would  records  assist  of  and a g r i c u l t u r e ;  mass  in  could  the  each v i l l a g e  was  Financial  The Gram  the d a t e , close  Pradhan  All  sports  the  decisions  were  the  order  cottage  and  affairs.  and  maintain  and  tree  industries;  and  plantation;  affairs; and  to  security;  cooperatives  cultural  on  Gram S a r k a r  t e n members were  and l i v e s t o c k ;  and  place  with  matters  law,  works  the  every  t i m e and  links  of  The o t h e r  following:  in  by t h e Gram Pradhan  in a l l  family  health.  3 5  p r o b l e m s and s u g g e s t e d how Gram S a r k a r  them i n e a c h o f  these  emphasized to determine  management,  functions  management and r e l i g i o u s  fisheries  various  tackle  of  for  their  Gram S a r k a r  the v i l l a g e .  business.  youth,  listed  the  and e x e c u t e  of  maintain  Gram Pradhan  p l a n n i n g and women's a f f a i r s ;  members  meeting  banks; communication,  education;  The manual  a  c o u n c i l and not  office  the  of Gram S a r k a r  cooperative  serve  and s p e c i f i c  (Member-Secretary)  be e n t r u s t e d w i t h one of food  to  p l a n n i n g and c o o r d i n a t i o n  villagers  working  entire  in charge  understand  The d u t i e s  would  The S a d a s y a - S a c h i b was t o be  to  finance,  convene  meeting.  government  used  member were e l a b o r a t e d .  of  would  and  be  and c o n s c i o u s n e s s  3 4  and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s .  He  literacy  d e v e l o p e d a S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r Manual  Gram S a r k a r  village.  of  t h e mechanism c o u l d  The government helping  level  areas.  possible  A survey  of  solutions.  i n c l u d i n g the maintenance  of  funds,  1 13  budgeting, important books  accounting in  and  audited Local  the  records 3 6  Government,  national  to  Government which  guide only illiteracy,  training  was  an  in  agencies the  of role  account w o u l d be  Ministry  improper the  family  absence  problems  of  obstructing  of  Local  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r T r a i n i n g  Guide  3 7  were  of  The N a t i o n a l  of  Institute  p r o b l e m s and t h e Gram S a r k a r .  family  livestock  asked  syllabi  But  3 8  planning, eradication  c a r e and p i s c i c u l t u r e  in  the  and d i d not  as  of the  strictly  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r to  these  problems.  p o o r c o o r d i n a t i o n among  and d e p a r t m e n t s .  this  different  Each emphasized  different  villages. put  framed bill.  wanted i t .  village of  the  very  pay  members of  t h e Gram S a r k a r detailed  All  All  the  officials  and  government's  was e s t a b l i s h e d e x a c t l y  but  formulated  and r e g u l a t i o n s ,  the p o l i t i c a l  government,  public  rules  in o p e r a t i o n ,  o p p o s i t i o n to  i g n o r e d and Gram S a r k a r  government  the  the  be  to  elaborated  indication  ordinance,  legislated  idea  major  t h e members needed t r a i n i n g ,  The government  was  as  Gram S a r k a r s  a  of  and  The g u i d e a t t a c h e d more i m p o r t a n c e  government  an  out  problems.  division  to  and t h e s e  illiteracy,  maintenance,  and  cooperatives,  the  Manual.  publication  d e t a i l e d d i s c u s s i o n of in  stated  transactions  included agriculture,  i n which  problems  another  published  t o be f o l l o w e d  follow  In  pointed  these  included  areas  other  and o r d e r  were  was  The Gram S a r k a r must m a i n t a i n  of  development,  attention  auditing,  food d e f i c i e n c y ,  p o o r law  cooperatives  This  manual.  regularly.  planning,  and  parties  the  plans way  favoured  a p p r e h e n s i o n s were v o i c e d  and p o l i t i c a l  opportunists  then  in  the the  about the  1 1 4  system.  The  Gram S a r k a r since  this In  the  General  would was  favour  not  In  position  of  The  CO.  one  of  candidates election,  could  be  councils  lives  there  village were  in  these  were  created,  T h e r e were were l o s t  incidences  over  the  i n d i c a t e d that  the  influential, Three  that  three  were  were not of  for  district.  all  reports  of  selection  of  few p e o p l e who b o t h e r e d t o Many v i l l a g e r s  some  villages. so  There  the  come  even  violence  f o r m a t i o n of  to  informed and i n  Gram  a  Sarkar.  ways i n d i f f e r e n t  villages  c o n s e n s u s was not a l w a y s  reached  matters.  T h e r e have b a c k g r o u n d s of ul-Alam  emerged i n  by c o n s e n s u s , and f r e q u e n t l y , by t h e  and  and a d d r e s s e d  Chittagong  three  0  function  candidates  candidates  accommodated."  proletariat  u r g i n g them t o make  in  into  Zia's  3 9  villages  were t h r e e  three  the  to  and r i v a l r y  in a v i l l a g e all  started  capital,  The c o u n c i l s were formed i n d i v e r g e n t and t h e v i o l e n c e  commented t h a t  body.  several  conflicts  meeting.  the m e e t i n g s . cases  the  Gram Pradhan  inaugural  few  the  selection  Gram S a r k a r  about  Local  r e a l i z e d that  positions  the  in  Gram Pradhan  divided  JSD  be an e l e c t e d  instance,  and o r a l l y  the  b o u r g e o i s i e and not  Zia v i s i t e d  delegates  scheme s u c c e s s f u l .  of  1980, Gram S a r k a r  soon f a c e d p r o b l e m s .  cases.  the  going to  summer of  Gram S a r k a r  Secretary  found  been some s t u d i e s Gram S a r k a r that  ten.  leaders  i n most c a s e s ,  was o c c u p i e d by r e l a t i v e l y to  on  grades  six  land,  and 4 1 . 6 7 p e r c e n t  in  the its  the  characteristics early  stages.  p o s i t i o n of  Manjur-  Gram  Pradhan  younger p e o p l e , h a v i n g e d u c a t i o n  They owned, of  the  on  an  average,  six  sample s u r v e y e d were  and  acres  from of  affiliated  1 15  w i t h the to  BNP.  higher  Over  98 p e r  families  who scenes  surveys  the  the  better-off  difference less.  in  that  the  was  But  as  influential  these  61  per  interviewed higher  class.""  of  of  that  social  cost  of  large." study been at  in the  education  economic  general  found that  in c o n t r o l  village The  the  of  in  found  and t h e y  further of  A  the  top  own i n t e r e s t  "same o l d v e s t e d  the  of)  become at  the at  villages'  under  g r o u p s who have  always  r e s o u r c e s and v a r i o u s  institutions  4 4  and b e n e f i t s  likely  to  result  from  been p o i n t e d out  in d i f f e r e n t  studies.  These  have  influenced  outcome  attempts  to  at  They  (rung  and have  have  government  evidence  t h e p o o r and needy v i l l a g e r s in  a  landholding  district.  village their  had  significant  added more  "represent the  the  Mukabber  large  Saha  Gram S a r k a r  productive  level."  ills  to  age,  in C o m i l l a  leaders  from  Member-Secretaries  "from  and  in a v i l l a g e  interests  represented  came  was  group  t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  Khan  t h e Gram S a r k a r  of  leaders  same e l i t e  Alam and  30 y e a r s  than  ladder  the  from  noticeable  mostly  Gram S a r k a r  leaders  research  They  4 3  villages,  the  t h e Gram S a r k a r  and  involved  of  only  the v i l l a g e  came  Other  1  members came  The  age of  politico-  societies."*  Gram S a r k a r  politics.  "belonged  dominated the  rural  people  the  Barket-e-Khuda,  2  through t h e i r stated  average  rural  these  Gram P r a d h a n s  village.  by them were under  level  proportion  that  the  in  cent  the  the  young  families  c o n t i n u e d to dominate that  of  fact  groups  of  traditionally  e c o n o m i c and s o c i a l confirmed  cent  the the  village  of level.  It  will  Gram  Sarkar  factors  reform  be u s e f u l ,  must local  in  this  1 16  context, Sarkar and  t o compare the g o v e r n m e n t ' s with those  operating  organization  suggested the  by  the  Swanirvar  published  of  ?  government?  for  their  use?  far  government  D i d the  Did  authority  and r i v a l r y  was  the  villages. conform  Gram S a r k a r M a n u a l  conflicts  How  the  Gram S a r k a r  r e s o u r c e s and a d e q u a t e local  in  prescribed  form  of  D i d the to  the  village  selection procedures  councils  other  the  Gram S a r k a r s have enough  to  training  operate  impede t h e  What  were  follow  and  operation  the  manuals  efficiently?  reasons  Did  of Gram S a r k a r s  scheme s u c c e s s f u l a s a r e f o r m i n  system?  Gram  for  the  local  success  or  failure? So  far,  I  surveyed  local  government  foreign  rulers  governments for  in  order  bottom. Sarkar  is  in  the in  With t h i s three  villages  the  districts  represent the  a major  government  in  also  control  for  the  Bangladesh. of  country.  bodies,  the  government  in  the  of  local  1980  villages.  I  in  Comilla  In  the  from of  the Gram  problems  Bangladesh.  have examined  A village  by  government  the view  more a b o u t  and the  local  to  to consider  south-eastern,  The v i l l a g e s  local  ushered  failure  government  Mymensingh,  the c e n t r a l ,  neglected  reveal  purpose in mind, of  of  top,  While  f o r m a t i o n and o p e r a t i o n  will  reforming l o c a l  from t h e  Bangladesh.  change was  essential  villages  view  institutions  reasons  An e x a m i n a t i o n of  encountered  of  reforms retained  Finally,  to u n d e r s t a n d the it  the  independent Bangladesh  local  reforms,  considered  always  some t i m e .  extending  have  Gram S a r k a r  in  was c h o s e n f r o m e a c h of and  Rajshahi.  and n o r t h - w e s t e r n  were c h o s e n a t  They regions  random, w i t h some  1 17  attention lived  p a i d to a c c e s s i b i l i t y  in each v i l l a g e  Gram S a r k a r s 1982, the  problems short  were a l m o s t  were o f f i c i a l l y  next  three  by  the  operation.  availability  a b o u t a month i n t h e  inoperative  abolished.  chapters  faced  term of  for  and  by t h a t  new  village  of  data.  summer of  time,  Nevertheless,  t o draw a p i c t u r e  of  I  the  institutions  I  1982.  and  in  have  tried  progress during  July in and their  118  NOTES 1  For details on the JSD's role and Colonel Taher's contribution to the c o u n t e r c o u p of November 7, 1975, see Lawrence L i f s c h u l t z , B a n g l a d e s h : The U n f i n i s h e d R e v o l u t i o n ( L o n d o n : Zed P r e s s , 1 9 7 9 ) .  2  T. Maniruzzaman, Mujib Regime and ( F e b r u a r y 1 9 7 6 ) , p.  3  M. Rashiduzzaman, "Bangladesh in 1977: Dilemmas of t h e M i l i t a r y R u l e r s , " A s i a n S u r v e y , 18, 2 ( F e b r u a r y 1 9 7 8 ) , p p . 127-8.  4  Ministry of Law and Parliamentary Affairs, Government O r d i n a n c e , 1976 (Dacca: Bangladesh P r e s s , 1 9 7 6 ) , p. TT  5  The L o c a l Government  6  M.M. Khan and H.M. Zafarullah, "The 1979 Parliamentary Elections in Bangladesh," Asian Survey, 19, 10 ( O c t o b e r 1 9 7 9 ) , p. 1034.  7  The figures were obtained from A.K.M. Shahidullah, " P a r l i a m e n t a r y E l e c t i o n s i n B a n g l a d e s h , 1979: An A n a l y s i s , " A d m i n i s t r a t i v e Science Review, 9, 3 (September 1 9 7 9 ) , p. 65.  8  Interview published in 1980, p. 23.  9  This was stated by M r . Anwar C h o u d h u r y , a f o r m e r O f f i c e S e c r e t a r y of t h e Awami L e a g u e . He was i n t e r v i e w e d i n Dhaka on J u l y 19, 1982.  10  A z i z u l H a q u e , " B a n g l a d e s h i n 1980: S t r a i n s O p p o s i t i o n in the D o l d r u m s , " A s i a n Survey, 1981), pp. 188-9.  11  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r ,  12  Azizul  13  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r ,  14  P l a n n i n g C o m m i s s i o n , Government of t h e P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of Bangladesh , The Second F i v e Y e a r P l a n 1980-85 , [Draft] (Dhaka: n . p . , 1980), p p . 7-6,7.  15  M.R. Rural Daily  Haque,  op.  "Bangladesh in Its Aftermath," 124.  Ordinance,  the  cit.  1976, A r t i c l e  weekly  January , p. April  1975: The F a l l Asian Survey,  Bichitra.  21,  of t h e 16, 2  The L o c a l Government  85.  October  3,  and S t r e s s e s 21, 2 (February  1980.  192. 17,  1980.  K h a n , " G r a m i n Kshamata-Kathamor S w a r u p . " [The Power Structure]. T r a n s l a t e d by Abdur R a z z a k . Sangbad , D h a k a , J u l y 5, 1982.  Real The  1 19  16  The B a n g l a d e s h G a z e t t e , E x t r a o r d i n a r y Government P r e s s , May 2 4 , 1 9 8 0 ) , R u l e  17  The B a n g l a d e s h G a z e t t e ,  May 2 4 ,  (Dacca: 9.  Bangladesh  1980, R u l e  17. 18 (2)  The B a n g l a d e s h  G a z e t t e , May 2 4 ,  1980,  Rule  The B a n g l a d e s h  G a z e t t e , May 24,  1980,  R u l e 23 (d)  The B a n g l a d e s h  G a z e t t e , May 24,  1980,  R u l e 24  The B a n g l a d e s h  G a z e t t e , May 2 4 ,  1 9 8 0 ,R u l e 2 9 .  The B a n g l a d e s h  G a z e t t e , May 2 4 ,  1 9 8 0 ,R u l e 3 4 .  23  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r ,  24  The D a i n i k  Bangla,  June 22,  25  The D a i n i k  Bangla,  J u n e 2 2 , 1980.  26  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r ,  June 2 2 , 1980.  27  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r ,  June 2 2 , 1980.  28  Transcripts of p a r l i a m e n t a r y d e b a t e s d a t e d June 2 1 , 1980. The t e x t of t h e d e b a t e s i s y e t t o be p u b l i s h e d .  29  T r a n s c r i p t s of  30  The B a n g l a d e s h O b s e r v e r ,  31  The D a i n i k  32  The M i n i s t e r f o r L o c a l G o v e r n m e n t , Rural Development and Cooperatives made the statement at t h e c o n c l u s i o n of a t r a i n i n g c o u r s e f o r Gram S a r k a r P r a d h a n s and S a c h i b s . The D a i n i k B a n g l a , June 2 5 , 1980.  33  Harry Blair, "Why Bangladesh Needs B a n g l a d e s h T i m e s , O c t o b e r 2 8 , 1980.  34  May 3 0 ,  (2)  1980.  parliamentary  Bangla,  d e b a t e s d a t e d June 2 1 , 1980.  June 2 2 ,  June 24,  1980.  1980.  1980.  Gram  Sarkar."  The  Ibid.  35  Government of the People's S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r Manual I n s t i t u t e , 1 9 8 0 ) , p. 5~.  36  Ibid.,  37  Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, Jonogoner Sangathan S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r [The p e o p l e ' s o r g a n i z a t i o n --- S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r ] ( D h a k a : M i n i s t r y of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives,  pp.  Republic (Dhaka:  of Bangladesh , Local Government  24-5.  1 20  1980). 38  Syed N u r u z z a m a n , e d . , S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r T r a i n i n g G u i d e [in Bengali] (Dhaka: National Institute of Local Government, n . d . ) .  39  Interview  40  Reported  41  Manjur-ul-Alam, "Leadership Pattern Under Swanirvar Gram Sarkar in Bangladesh : An Examination of Some C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of Gram P r o d h a n s in Selected Areas of Comilla District," J o u r n a l of t h e B a n g l a d e s h Academy f o r Rural Development, C o m i l l a , 10 7~i & 2 (July 1980 and January 1981), p p . 36-46.  42  B.A. Alam and M. M u k a b b e r , "Gram P r o d h a n s and S a c h i b s of S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r : Some B a c k g r o u n d I n f o r m a t i o n , " Local Government Q u a r t e r l y , 10, 1-2 (March-June 1 9 8 1 ) , p p . 73-4.  43  Barket-e-Khuda, Nurul Islam Khan and S u n i l Kumar S a h a , Power S t r u c t u r e i n R u r a l B a n g l a d e s h : Some R e f l e c t i o n s from a V i l l a g e i n C o m i l l a ( O c c a s i o n a l Paper N o . 28, Development S t u d i e s C e n t r e , The A u s t r a l i a n N a t i o n a l University, 1981, p. 15.  44  Ibid.,  p.  published in B i c h i t r a , in a l e t t e r  28.  to B i c h i t r a ,  October  3,  September  1980. 5,  1980.  121  V.  ISOLATION AND INACTION: The  life  new  in  scheme  Mantala,  Mymensingh. institution the  Mantala  to  progress. village  of Gram S a r k a r  a  village  Formally, with a set  village.  But  of  in  brought  about  various  preparedness  local  stage  of  e x c l u s i o n of  broken,  of  followers  the  capable v i l l a g e r s  Mantala  from t h e  rest  and g r a d u a l l y Gram S a r k a r  institution  of  way  of  a  new  tasks  in of  negated  any  mobilization, The  r u l i n g party  the  efforts resulted  from t h e Gram S a r k a r . of  the c o u n t r y  became  of  on t h e p a r t  institution  early  the  district  has not d e v e l o p e d a "commitment t o a c t i o n " .  isolation  the  new  the  i n charge of  of  the v e r y  t o e n s u r e c o n t r o l by t h e in the  lack  affected  in  scheme  leaders  the  hardly  located  the  the  respond to Still  GRAM SARKAR IN MANTALA, MYMENSINGH  The  c o u l d not  inactive  long  be  before  was a b o l i s h e d .  THE VILLAGE Mymensingh, situated area  of  in  the  administrative  north-central  part  district  of  of  Bangladesh  the c o u n t r y .  It  ,  is  covers  an  5 0 3 9 . 7 6 s q u a r e m i l e s and has a p o p u l a t i o n of 6 , 5 4 3 , 0 0 0 .  Mymensingh i s an  an  average  the of  t h i r d most p o p u l o u s , d i s t r i c t of 1,745  people  means t h e r e  is  0.37 a c r e  of  famous  a  producer  of  as  Bangladesh.  Mantala  Mymensingh d i s t r i c t  is  inhabit  one s q u a r e m i l e ,  land per p e r s o n . jute,  located  in  under B a j i t p u r  Bangladesh  2  The  district  the  principal  the  south-eastern  police  station  and  1  ;  this is  c a s h c r o p of  of  part  of  Kishoreganj  1 22  subdivision. Mantala square it  is  a small v i l l a g e  mile.  No h i s t o r y  c a n be assumed t h a t  developed fertile  over  lands  residents three in  of  early over  centuries.  Indian  principally  village,  generated later  instituted on b e h a l f At  for  the  the  village  Then  elders at  remember,  According  to  the  has been  inhabited  for  over  the  principal  occupation in  the  found in v i l l a g e  panchayats  all  village the  elders  panchayat  and  local  which  aimed  The a d v e n t  of  the  century,  local  bodies  a  did  of  British  revenue  system  Beginning  local  in  bodies  collecting  the  Municipality  not  the were  t h e money  met  to  village in  its  has r e c e i v e d  village.  not  early very  problems.  of  as  far  in  In  1869  a s anyone  e x p e r i e n c e any major  in  Mantala,  common c o n c e r n ,  As f a r  as  headquarters,  was e s t a b l i s h e d  discuss matters  did  extend  subdivision  two m i l e s away f r o m t h e  among t h e v i l l a g e r s Mantala  basin.  t h e p u r p o s e of  d e c i s i o n s on v a r i o u s the  the  government. the  about  3  assembled to c u l t i v a t e  institutions.  but' were c o n s t i t u t e d a t  Bajitpur,  it  and o r d e r .  nineteenth  but  affairs  in  local  a  villages,  reorganization  i n Mymensingh f o r  Kishoreganj.  arrived  need  than h a l f  managing v i l l a g e  The  law  less  Bangladesh  still  those  included  subsequent  first,  Mantala,  to  maintaining  of  of  is  subcontinent.  the  half  Mantala  Agriculture  were at  and t h e  farmers  Brahmaputra  days were s i m i l a r the  as  of  been w r i t t e n of M a n t a l a ,  most o t h e r  The p r o c e d u r e s of  influentials  rule  like  the  the  Mantala.  has e v e r  centuries of  w i t h an a r e a  and can  conflict  days. little  outside  assistance  for  1 23  developmental still has  works,  primitive. only  one  Indigenous narrow  primary  school,  practitioners  facilities  in  agriculture.  the  is  poultry  farm.  Mantala  has  dry  agriculture.  no s m a l l  cent  About  non-workers,  the  scale  25 p e r c e n t  in  irrigation  is  based  on  crops.  and t h e r e  the  last are  residents  of  are  is  decade. engaged  work  in  the  elderly  in the  the p o p u l a t i o n c o n s i s t  children,  a  The p o p u l a t i o n of  villagers  of  Roads  principal  small  20 p e r c e n t of  physician.  of  economy  industries.  number  including  lack  are  villagers  services.  the  a  village  qualified  The  on  in the thousand  due t o  are  on  A negligible  towns.  a  no  suffers  i n c r e a s e d by a b o u t per  and  jute  carried  85  about  season.  and  There are  Approximately  conditions  provide medical  Agriculture  Rice  Pisciculture  living  The p o p u l a t i o n of  and muddy.  nearby  and  and  of the  handicapped." Agriculture Mantala wells to  , except and power  forty  receive half  the  their in  acre  equally  by  is  carried  use of  a  (local)  for  the the  In  the c o s t  other  landowner  and t h e  and  varies  of  from twenty and  fifty 5  and  the  are  costs  hired cultivator, are  adequate  for it  In  cultivation  combined  find  in  tube  varieties.  and t h e  labourers  ways  deep  variety,  cases,  The l a n d o w n e r s  sources are  The l a n d l e s s  rice  high y i e l d i n g  bear  employment e l s e w h e r e ,  Mantala.  desi  primitive  shallow  for  shared e q u a l l y .  l a n d and o t h e r  few  in  of  output. the  on  Productivity  hired cultivators the  in g a i n f u l  the  pumps.  of  output  still  maunds p e r a c r e  cases,  shared  for  maunds p e r  to e i g h t y most  is  able  living  to  income  and  engage from  comfortably  extremely  difficult  1 24  to  make  ends  pisciculture  meet.  and p o u l t r y  to expand these  and D u l a l p u r , .  village  of is  have  supplies  the  are  Sonali  also  products are  they  of  Bank,  Mantala  another  five miles Part  of  in  very  properly  Loans  day,  but  only  number of  radio  battery-operated  a  at  of  for  Bank  6  at  .  the  miles  the  dealer  in  purchase  of  Project  of  a the  in  A branch  the  same  P r i v a t e money .  interaction  from in  Bajitpur.  village  Bajitpur  dealers  At p r e s e n t ,  little  from  the  the  road to  T e l e g r a p h and t e l e p h o n e Newspapers  reach Mantala  few  of  receiver  the  sets  television  nearest  town  lending  Apart  from  takes  place  sets.  railway  the v i l l a g e used  to  is  metalled,  are  people at  within  one  read them.  The  care  to  and  there  Electricity  and  available  from t h e c a p i t a l  high,  station,  transport  facilities  villagers is  are  a  few  yet  come  There  are  Islam.  The  has n o t  Mantala. The p o p u l a t i o n of M a n t a l a  no  couple  n a t i o n a l i z e d bank,  and m o t o r i z e d s c o o t e r s a r e  goods.  for  Bajitpur.  Bajitpur.  to  Krishi  urgency,  and  is  Char.  rickshaws  been u t i l i z e d  from t h e Thana I r r i g a t i o n  been p r o m i n e n t  great  Mantala  and  a  u s e d by t h e p e o p l e of M a n t a l a  matters  Sarar  within  fertilizers.  through the  b u s i n e s s has n e v e r  between  not  government  marketed p r i n c i p a l l y  c l o s e d down.  available  government the  the  T h e r e were two a u t h o r i z e d f e r t i l i z e r  fertilizers the  from  f a r m i n g have  both b i g markets  , but  Bajitpur  loans  activities.  Agricultural  Mantala  The  Hindus  village  or  followers  has a p o p u l a t i o n of  of  is  fairly  religions  homogenous. other  than  980 among whom 507 a r e  m a l e s and 473  1 25  females,  living  in  190 h o u s e h o l d s .  p r o v i d e d by t h r e e related  to  influential  one  another,  The l e a d e r s h i p of M a n t a l a  7  families.  and have n e v e r  conflict.  Among t h e m s e l v e s ,  these  third  the  village.  of  have h e l d history these  land  important  families  including  business  and  and  Mantala  visit  contributed S i n c e they  to  cultivation trusts.  to  The r e c i p i e n t s staying the In  of  influence  There  But  and  these  They m a i n t a i n  influence  All  of  of  the  the  , these has  families  families been  12 p e r c e n t ,  over  about  little  are of  in  Mantala.  are  able the  cities  last  to are  and  repay  This  factor  with connections  the  to  educated v i l l a g e  the d o n o r .  in  t o be t h e  noticeable  the  have  they  gratified  continue  no  factors  awards s u c h r i g h t s  or  same a v e r a g e  years. as  the  to  land. secure people able  to  poor. it  by  adds  to  cities.  leaders.  change  few  reside family  families  the  into  w i t h the  cultivate  in  town of  gone  compete w i t h one a n o t h e r  owner  family  have  these  to  the  professions,  p e o p l e do not  land,  labourers  families  district  links  these  amount of  illiterate  c o m p o s i t i o n of M a n t a l a around  the  Others  a  some members o f  in  wealth.  direct  bodies throughout  decades,  Dhaka.  are  about  these  engineering  such favours  to  own  various  and t h e  the  loyal  Mantala  local  The p r o f e s s i o n a l s w o r k i n g  jobs  families  in  poor v i l l a g e r s  rights,  been engaged i n  Members of  four  periodically.  the  families  work  own a s u b s t a n t i a l  the  the  to  village.  sharecroppers  Sometimes,  three  last  capital,  acquired the  in  the  and  and t h e  in  provide  Over  have gone out  permanently  he  positions  medicine  Mymensingh,  employ  in the  of M a n t a l a .  These  is  in  the  social  Literacy  in Bajitpur  is  thana,  1 26  but  only  the  village  school of  is  approximately is  literate.  on t h e  in  awareness landless,  but  politically recent  the  Some  times  have  the  made  surprisingly,  have become more  real  the  children  students  from t h e  increased,  but  the  effort  so  landed far  poor  few  demonstrated  are  their and  to  the  organize  Economic d i f f i c u l t i e s  to  conscious  be  resigned  apathetic  There  in Mantala,  on  a large  scale.  the  two g a t h e r i n g s  to  at  these meetings, Politics residents showed  price  the  are  The v i l l a g e for  about is  families  no  of to  in  such  fate  and  participation  in  extra  slim.  to c i t i e s  Large of  not  of M a n t a l a . for  one  of  the  Only about the  half  political  8  not  occurred except  for  The a t t e n d a n c e  at  disputes.  At one  of  present.  principal  interests  the p e o p l e situation  desire  to  of  down.  They d i d  necessities  has n o t  together,  most e x p r e s s e d t h e i r basic  but  c o n g r e g a t i o n s c o u l d be  local  t w e n t y p e o p l e were  villages  employment-generating  offering Eid prayers. is  f r o m most  has gone u p ,  seldom g e t s  the a d j u d i c a t i o n  any c o n c e r n  these,  not d i f f e r e n t  and m i g r a t i o n  weekly Ju'ma p r a y e r s  observed only  is  The income of  terms.  facilities  the  than h a l f  villagers  appeared  economy of M a n t a l a  in Bangladesh.  Of  primary  affairs. The  the  the  between  gap.  more  but  in  they  no  differences,  local  few  p o p u l a t i o n of  in  villagers  been  reducing  female  students  less  very  differences  t h e r e has for  the  consumer goods has  Mantala.  of  of  However,  There are  The use of  available  cent  The number of  increase.  s c h o o l age a t t e n d .  families.  5 per  see t h e  I  in  of  interviewed the  country.  government not  the  care  keep which  127  political  party  preference  for  supported  the  leaders,  the  majority  of  reported  that  hard  for  In  votes  the  local as  groups  links  need.  to  the  BNP  are  assistance  who a r e  able  in Mantala,  cultivation  inside  or  outside  village,  regardless  of  better-off  in  in  Mantala,  Sarkar  but  not  to  in  w h i c h was "provide  reality.  villagers is  police  station,  to maintain n o t a major  and i t  everyday  law  away.  party  organizations  by  loyalties  in  times.  to  times  These  land,  to  with helps  lead  cash.  Mantala,  Dhaka. be  organized  security"  exists  is  help left  and o r d e r .  p r o b l e m f a c e d by t h e  is  available  entirely However,  villagers.  with  on p a p e r  A c c o r d i n g to both the  little  of  employment  s m a l l amounts of families  to  c o u l d be u s e d  form a l l i a n c e s  i n power a t  and U n i o n P a r i shad l e a d e r s ,  the B a j i t p u r  order  party  defence party  each v i l l a g e  or even  and i n f l u e n t i a l  the p o l i t i c a l  The v i l l a g e ten people  the  party  organizations  government  rights  was  worked  no permanent  parties  people  the  It  villages  fade  t o h e l p them i n d i f f i c u l t  g r a n t i n g of  polled  party  Political  the  the  is  political  include  Therefore,  There  village  election.  from o t h e r  from t h e  traditionally  (BNP)  overshadowed  and i n d i v i d u a l s .  secure  Party  and l a t e r  permanent  does have  a c c o r d i n g to the  Political  elections,  loyalties  has  presidential  Mantala.  W i t h no s u c h l i n k  those  the  village.  a b s e n c e of party  of  in  the  but,  last  section  Mantala  (AL),  the  the workers  in  small  Nationalist  in  party  A  parties.  Awami League  before  in M a n t a l a ,  power.  political  the  just  in  Bangladesh  organization emerge  was  Gram from  to  the  law  and  1 28  TRADITION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT Mantala government of  was  hardly  fund  up a t  the  administration.  the  s i g n s of  district  taste  Basic  Councils  of  of  local  government.  The  Union  village.  was  neighbouring  Mantala  was  as  But  constitution  the  the  of  by  in  later,  1960. units  Dulalpur  the  Boards  had  its when  Union of  local  became  C h a i r m a n was a r e s i d e n t  represented  no  1920s w i t h  only  century  the p r i m a r y  village  had  1 0  respectively.  Mantala  a half  local  and L o c a l  in  introduced as  the  Committees  were n o t e d  about  Union Boards  Union C o u n c i l headquarter  The  The D i s t r i c t  Boards.  system  r e p l a c e d the  period.  in  and s u b d i v i s i o n l e v e l s  government  Democracy  changes  Board  decentralization  establishment  first the  and t h e D i s t r i c t  9  i m p a c t on v i l l a g e  The f i r s t  by  system d u r i n g the c o l o n i a l  the F e r r y  were s e t  affected  Secretary  the  of  that  of  the  Counc i l . Local Local  government  bodies  were  programmes,  in  of  and  The  elected  to  independence  Union  Panchayats.  family  Parishad. adjacent  of  of  law  now be o b s e r v e d  being  used  to  to performing other  and o r d e r  villagers  and t h e noticed  the  in  1971,  c o n t i n u e d as  The C h a i r m a n of  of  Dulalpur.  the  the  villages. development  functions,  that  Councils  They were l a t e r  the  supervision local  of  to  Secretary  Union Parishad  roads  affairs.  replaced  an of  as  p e o p l e were  in p u b l i c were  such  named U n i o n P a r i s h a d s .  U n i o n C o u n c i l who b e l o n g e d  Mantala,  village  Union  in  implement  the Union C o u n c i l s to p a r t i c i p a t e  After  Secretary  now  addition  the maintenance schools.  could  by The  influential t h e new U n i o n  was  from  the  129  SWANIRVAR GRAM SARKAR Frequent  changes  interruptions in Mantala the  since  leaders.  sought  to  Sarkar the  the The  w i t h the  Officer  Pradhan,  the  The s m a l l to  portfolios  the  village.  who  The  among t h e Gram S a r k a r  names  to  be  Gram Pradhan  also  The Gram P r a d h a n ,  was  years  old  s t u d i e d up t o c l a s s  one of  the  family but  had  and  business.  families  By  farmworkers.  over  the  years  He s u p e r v i s e d h i r e d  also  Shamsuzzoha  peers  influential  decreased  fragmentation. land,  had  once owned a c o n s i d e r a b l e amount of  it  worked  owning had  as  land  followers  The l a n d o w n e r s  b e c a u s e he owned l a n d ,  a and both  Gram  the  Gram as  allocated  of  members were v a r i e d .  belonged to  of  members.  Gram S a r k a r  and  the  approved  The b a c k g r o u n d , e x p e r i e n c e and a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s  sixty  In  attended  Mohammad Shamsuzzoha as of  1980  government,  villagers  by  other  in  the c o n s t i t u t i o n  number of  members.  managed  t h e h e l p of  in the  and  activities  Gram S a r k a r  by  announced  select  Dhaka  were  with of  down  and he s u b m i t t e d a l i s t  Gram S a r k a r  affairs  administration  officially  agreed  Local  laid  in  stopped development  establishment  rules  in Mantala.  government  Union P a r i s h a d  revitalize  meeting  other  independence. of  village  Circle  the  in ongoing p r o j e c t s  Secretary  accordance  of  in  considered  seven.  in  Mantala,  cultivating the him  and  who worked on in the  his  construction it  himself,  landowners as  He His  through l i t i g a t i o n  contractor  among  Shamsuzzoha,  village.  property  labourers  not  the  Mantala  one  but d i d n o t p e r f o r m t h e  of  and  the  their  "inferior"  130  work  of  cultivating  by c u l t i v a t i n g  his  it  himself.  The f a r m w o r k e r s  derived  l a n d on a s h a r e c r o p p i n g b a s i s  benefit  and t h u s  obeyed  of  Muslim  him. Shamsuzzoha had a l w a y s League  (ML)  shifted  on r e l i g i o u s  to  the  a l w a y s been to  serve  result  BNP.  involved  on e l e c t e d  of  his  lost  establishment  of  to  regain  public to  affairs  local  in v i l l a g e local  politics.  among  But  however,  his  He was  as  liberation  an  a  war,  leaders.  him  The  opportunity  long a s s o c i a t i o n  Shamsuzzoha had not  the p a s t .  able  Moreover,  village gave  he had  he was n e v e r  d u r i n g the  the  allegiance  connections,  previously.  Despite  in Mantala, in  family  activities  respect  the  Two y e a r s a g o , h i s  bodies  position.  bodies  supporter  Thanks t o h i s  Gram S a r k a r ,  his  a  grounds.  pro-Pakistan  Shamsuzzoha  been  sought  with  election  s e l e c t e d as Gram P r a d h a n  in  1980. Shamsuzzoha as a l e a d e r . village. essential  felt  He s a i d From  for  that  the  frankly  previous  the  villagers  that  he  his  President principal  institution the  to  that  political  Bangladesh. task.  of  He a s s e r t e d he party  would  illiteracy the  work  preference.  and  village  for The  its  the was  He p r e s i d e d o v e r  Gram  addressed  by  Gram S a r k a r  was  the  Mantala,  his  welfare  Gram Pradhan  new  village  especially  the c o n t r o l was  him  this  conferences  in  in  control  thought  considered  successful  that  to  The s u p e r v i s i o n of  Shamsuzzoha  be f a i r l y  eradication  growth. and  of  he  of M a n t a l a .  S a r k a r m e e t i n g s and a t t e n d e d n a t i o n a l the  wanted  experience,  improvement  had c o n f i d e n c e  in  of  population  first  interest,  regardless proudly  of  his  stated  131  that the  all last  not  disputes two y e a r s  been  in the  in  d u r i n g w h i c h Gram S a r k a r  Circle the  concept  with l o c a l  Mantala.  short  claimed that  1 1  Subdivisional  Gram S a r k a r  met once  problems.  responsive,  He f e l t  and  period  Officer  and  to the  explain  villagers. or  twice  that  the  and were a v a i l a b l e  the  The every  villagers  for  helping  projects. Azizur  Rahman was  in Mantala.  But  it  was  active  member  of  Food P r o d u c t i o n that  it  was  He was had  the  Member-Secretary  more  years  t h e AL i n  Mantala  the p a s t ,  Committee of not  that  to  of  and  t o any  that  party  He had  political  Sheikh  and was  the in  owe a l l e g i a n c e  was  schooling  member i n M a n t a l a .  He d e n i e d a l l e g i a n c e  known i n  safe  as  in his mid-twenties,  Gram S a r k a r  ten.  well  selected  Sheikh  other  up t o c l a s s  party.  stated  the  Gram S a r k a r  b e h i n d him t h a n any  the  to  and p r o c e d u r e s of  in a g r i c u l t u r e .  studied  in  had  promoting f i s h e r i e s  failure  operated  over  body  i n mid-1980 t o  Gram S a r k a r  occupied  of  The  the v i l l a g e  were v e r y  Sheikh of  this  and d i s c u s s e d l o c a l  Mantala  task  Shamsuzzoha, the had  Gram S a r k a r .  locally  come t o  Gram Pradhan  of  to  Officer  month,  the  He a t t r i b u t e d  According  had been s e t t l e d  w i t h t h e h e l p of  successful  livestock.  village  was  Secretary Mantala.  an of He  t o any  political  and t h i s  explained  of  political  party. Sheikh his  was a nephew of  inclusion  in  the  t h e Gram P r a d h a n ,  Gram S a r k a r  affiliations  with  the  books  body,  and m a i n t a i n i n g  was  for  the  selected  AL.  t o t h e Gram S a r k a r  in  Sheikh  spite  his  was e n t r u s t e d w i t h  its  files.  He f e l t  because the v i l l a g e r s  keeping that  he  wanted  him  1 32  to  be  in  people.  it.  The o f f i c e  Ghar  of  the  house,  was  in very  did  This c o i n c i d e d with h i s  the  Sheikh's where  the  Gram S a r k a r  house.  It  under  new  the  had d e f i n i t e l y areas.  improved.  up t o c l a s s  any  law  the  Bangla  front The  of  office  time.  Sheikh  upon  previous  not  changed  had  and o r d e r  situation  member.  order  which  security  1 3  of  support  interpreted  measures  Abdur  and  other  R a s h i d was  staunch  in h i s  selected,  cultivated adjudication  Democratic  wanting  Party  him as a Gram  portfolio  of  law  i n f o r m i n g the v i l l a g e r s the  offenders  in  and t h i s the  he he  might  of  and about  for  their  as  a  was  been  the  of  ignorance village  of  food on  elder  acres  illiterate,  He was an u n c l e  The l i s t  the p o r t f o l i o his  He owned t h r e e  He  t h e ML.  have  Gram S a r k a r .  expressed felt,  mid-sixties.  himself.  supporter  R a s h i d was g i v e n  although  school  1 4  Gram P r a d h a n , inclusion  as  and  dispute  Pakistan  villagers  punishing  l a n d w h i c h he c u l t i v a t e d a  the  land  in v i l l a g e  from t h e  in  of  He was e n t r u s t e d w i t h t h e  he  wrongdoings.  y e a r s o l d and had a t t e n d e d  experience  BNP had r e s u l t e d  Sarkar  that  room i n  Mantala  He owned two a c r e s  His  shifting  the  still  the  seated.  at  serve  N o t h i n g had been a c c o m p l i s h e d i n  thirty-five  three.  himself.  and h i s to  in  improvement  a l t h o u g h the  to  1 2  K a l a M i a h was  them  t o be an  administration.  institution,  located  were u s u a l l y  and c o u l d c o l l a p s e  not c o n s i d e r Gram S a r k a r village  was  was a s e p a r a t e  male g u e s t s  bad s h a p e ,  s y s t e m s of  of  of  intention  reason  the his  showed  agriculture,  the m a t t e r . and  of  for  t h e members and  and  for  his  He was long  1 33  experience Sarkar  in  village  activities,  village  leaders  in Mantala. villagers,  failing  h i s views  in t h e i r were  t h e Gram S a r k a r .  A b u l Hashem was t w e n t y - s i x education.  the  BNP  t h e Gram S a r k a r  for  in charge that  livestock  of  he  for the  was  in M a n t a l a .  referring  to  the  bodies.  But  c o u l d be m i s u s e d . Asiruddin  In  was  a  t h e Gram S a r k a r  cooperative failed  in  villagers  He,  all  very  little  of  land.  He had  and c l a i m e d t h a t  the  of p u b l i c  joined  Gram S a r k a r  department  in  he  Hashem s t a t e d  of  the  Mantala  had  in h i s  late  files  He  projects no  and  had been  village.  funds f o r  that  fisheries  Gram S a r k a r  in  local  affairs.  He d i d n o t  He  was  through  funds  was  put  in Mantala.  He  areas,  except  their  names.  to w r i t e  Suruj  M i a h was a l a n d l e s s  too,  believed  in  i n c h a r g e of felt for  twenties  that  that  teaching  w i t h no  supported  know when he was  , and had not a t t e n d e d any of  Asiruddin  banks  the  cultivator  came t o p o w e r .  absentia,  the  had  acre  the v i l l a g e .  in  by  1 6  e d u c a t i o n or e x p e r i e n c e that  a half  corruption  Gram S a r k a r  seriously  R a s h i d d i d not a t t e n d a  Hashem's o p i n i o n ,  misuse  improve c o n d i t i o n s  o l d and  a year,  good of  In  reducing  to  years  running  in  party  taken  education, although  successful  local  over  to  other  1 5  He owned and c u l t i v a t e d  supported  showed  not  i g n o r a n t a b o u t Gram He a c c u s e d t h e  duties  who c o n s i d e r e d him a c l o w n .  s i n g l e m e e t i n g of  he was  R a s h i d was  and spoke i n c o h e r e n t l y .  of  But  affairs.  its  any  selected  meetings.  cooperatives  and  Gram S a r k a r  had  the  illiterate  1 7  labourer  supporting  the  in  his  late  ruling party.  forties. He was a  134  representative understood Suruj  that  find  thought  that  he was  two  body had o n l y  when  t h e Gram S a r k a r  showed t h a t  s e l e c t e d to  Arifur  in  the  tasks.  village.  But  cultural  Miah  was  affairs  education,  Mastu  be  his  own  land. t o why  The o f f i c e  task  of  interested  Arifur  felt  files  promoting i n becoming  p u r p o s e s of Gram  new  serving  no  he had s e r v e d f o r  two  it  was  that  Sarkar, the  been a b o l i s h e d s i n c e  still  in  unaware  that  member i n c h a r g e of  Mantala.  and c u l t i v a t e d  his  He was  own t h r e e  youth,  forty acres  years of  a b o u t p o l i t i c s and s u p p o r t e d any p a r t y  had  noticed  constituted. council,  the  fulfilled.  a s t h e Gram S a r k a r  not c a r e  over  1 9  Mastu years  know  o l d , had s c h o o l i n g up  the  he was not  they  purpose.  disputes  and had no i d e a a s  with  or  s h o u l d have  He  in Mantala  cultivating  party  and had not e n q u i r e d a b o u t  institution  as  meetings.  M i a h d i d not  t h e Gram S a r k a r .  was e n t r u s t e d  could  token.  interested  settling  Suruj  years  living  a leader how  and  1 8  and e a r n e d h i s  was  in  c o m m u n i c a t i o n and works  s u p p o r t any p o l i t i c a l he  education  years.  was m e r e l y  and was not  succeeded  other  Mantala,  and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s  were,  Rahman was t w e n t y - s e v e n  five,  He d i d not  institution  in a l l  in  t h e Gram S a r k a r  know what h i s d u t i e s  i n c h a r g e of  Arifur  in  labourers  He d i d n o t a t t e n d  the  the p r e v i o u s  or  his place  and f a i l e d  to c l a s s  landless  the v i l l a g e  out.  locally, that  the  M i a h d i d not  a member of to  of  and  He  no  change  attended  felt  that  only the  in Mantala one  sports  o l d w i t h no  land. that  held  He  of  Gram P r a d h a n d i d n o t  the try  did  power.  s i n c e Gram S a r k a r  meeting  and  was  village hard  to  1 35  a c c o m p l i s h the  objectives  Abdus Sabur the  official of  the  Mantala.  Sabur  t h e Gram P r a d h a n Sabur  the  the meetings Asia Sarkar  entrusted  with in  in  was  her  no r e l a t i o n ,  village.  village  two  of  But  Rabeya  population control  did  no not  and f a m i l y  in  happened Sabur  who f o u g h t  for  attended  all  2 1  female  members  members i n d i c a t e d of  of  that  Gram  she  promoting  she s o l d h e r meagre amount t o Dhaka a few  months  be c o n t a c t e d  f e m a l e member, Rabeya old housewife.  idea  about  know  that  planning  in  she was Mantala.  for  her  vacant Khatoon, never  and  in charge 2 2  of  after  She had  Gram S a r k a r  was  cottage  The p o s i t i o n had r e m a i n e d  The o t h e r  had  Gram S a r k a r  w i t h no e d u c a t i o n .  c o u l d not  was a twenty-two y e a r and  was  T h i s m i g h t have  Mantala.  Asia  body.  the  in  he  He c l a i m e d t o have  family  formed.  know t h a t  the m i l i t a r y  responsibility  departure.  school  operations.  of  the  The l i s t  the the  comments on t h e  been t o  Gram S a r k a r  and moved w i t h h e r  Gram S a r k a r  farmer  Bangladesh.  Mantala.  industries  since  of  of  Miah,  b e c a u s e he was not c o n s u l t e d by  t o be a p a r t y  K h a t o o n was one of  in  property  of  department  small  Chhottu  He d i d not  i n making d e c i s i o n s . a  2 0  nickname,  Gram S a r k a r .  e x p r e s s e d anger  BNP  liberation  Sarkar.  in h i s  health  was  c o n s i d e r e d the  Gram  listed  books of  in charge  because  was  of  its of  1 36  AN OVERVIEW Gram S a r k a r then, 20  only  law  about  twenty  and  order  villagers  in Mantala.  were  low p r i c e s to  appeared  after  help  ineffective  Most of  Gram S a r k a r  since Mantala members  very  villagers  is  The  not  the  thought to  the  n e x t m e e t i n g on  time  of  Only  the  six  the  members  purchase  The paddy was  when  the  already  were aware of  turn  village  itself  necessary  It  was  the was  in  reliable  financial  of  was  in  the  to  be  used  an  attend. Gram  t h e Gram  Shava  across  difficulty,  village  villagers.  and the the  leaders  for  since  was  members,  he  however,  Moreover,  because  A l t h o u g h some  village  It  of  came  b e i n g run e f f i c i e n t l y ,  changes  to  the v i l l a g e r s ,  of  The o t h e r  resources.  purchased  existence  times  by t h e  with  i n f o r m e d about  a p p r o a c h e d by some,  leader.  paddy  went u p .  invited  they  traditional  two  rendered  were not  the  and  and  t o be  been  known t o  size,  of  prices  was not c o n s i d e r e d h e l p f u l  t h e Gram S a r k a r question  in Yet  to  Gram Pradhan  considered  were  small  frequently.  tended to  Gram S a r k a r have  members  the  had  members  very  also a traditional were  and t e n Gram S a r k a r  Some had even a t t e n d e d a few m e e t i n g s of  The  help.  January  The v i l l a g e r s  villagers  Since  On  Even some members were not  the  1980.  books.  and s t o r e d .  villagers  late  illiteracy  government.  institution.  i n the  discuss  Gram S a r k a r  these meetings.  Sarkar.  to  the h a r v e s t  the  that  By  in  t h e p r o b l e m s of  had waned.  present  money p r o v i d e d by t h e  later  villagers  in a meeting to d i s c u s s  M a r c h 25 1981, i n t e r e s t  at  in Mantala  two m e e t i n g s were r e c o r d e d  1981,  gathered  was e s t a b l i s h e d  it  did  the not  villagers  the  had been  response largely  1 37  negative. through role  Nothing, its  in  Gram S a r k a r .  school  The  for  observed  Secretary  resident  of  of  the  elected,  BNP  the  strong  Secretary  was  Pradhan,  information new v i l l a g e at  and  because  c o u l d be  who  of  Gram  was  a  other  leaders  in  the  village  selected  to counter  for  the purpose  the  various  f u n c t i o n i n g of  out.  of  intermediate  the  exemplifies level  to allow  did  the  Gram and  it  Parishad The  Gram  Chairman  preventing  from r e a c h i n g  the  on  politics,  programmes.  government  was  Based  Union  and  the  scheme  villages,  Gram S a r k a r ,  the have  the  it  the  of  would  had c o n c l u d e d t h a t for  being  upon  hand, accused the Union P a r i s h a d  This  Sarkar.  But  to c a r r y  a  permanent  looked  was d e p e n d e n t on t h e  execute  directives  had  two b o d i e s were not  institution  it  between  c o v e r i n g Mantala  n o n - e l e c t e d Gram S a r k a r  and i n t e g r i t y  institution. the  of  e x p e r i e n c e w i t h u n i o n and v i l l a g e  funds to  on t h e  operation  to undermine the a u t h o r i t y  the Union P a r i s h a d  o b s t r u c t i n g the  leaders  the  and t h e p e r s o n n e l  ineffective  its  institutions  new s t r u c t u r e  that  base  was not an e s s e n t i a l  Chairman f o r  of  of  for  relationship  non-BNP d o m i n a t e d U n i o n P a r i s h a d s .  t w e n t y y e a r s of  Sarkar  the  felt  not have t h e c a p a b i l i t y  the  to  as an a t t e m p t  a  the  government  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d  not p l a n n e d w e l l ,  his  local  in  Union P a r i s h a d ,  The c o n t r o l o f the  Mantala  be awarded  d i s p u t e s and t h e  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d  Mantala,  institution  local  can o n l y  in  time.  adjusting  coordinated well.  given  of  and o t h e r  time  Credit  complications  in Mantala.  difficult  former.  some  anticipated  t h e Gram S a r k a r  new  seems, had been a c c o m p l i s h e d  the a d j u d i c a t i o n  a night  The  it  reluctance  decentralization  the of of  1 38  power  to  the  lowest  levels.  leaders  at  these  two  attempts  in  local  The  levels  government  lack  works  permanent  of  BNP and t h e  residents  residents,  the  Gram S a r k a r the  the  of  because  intervention  of  f o r m a t i o n of  a council  development  of  traditional the  a  w h i c h d i d not  to  Sarkar.  it  of  The  were n o n e .  because  they  and  status  village  of  or c o n s e n t . Sarkar,  no  d i d not  support  in  the  the p a t r o n a g e  They d i d not  other  villages  They p r o b a b l y a l s o  want t o g e t  of  like in  the  saw  the  w h i c h may c h a l l e n g e  i n c o u r s e of  to  the  did  the  time.  Moreover,  involved  i n a scheme  base  to  lack  of  try  fight  were r e s i d i n g o u t s i d e  of  in  the  other  village  interest use  in  village  new  factions,  since  village  for  idea  their  the  own  business of  local to  the  knowledge  p r o c e d u r e of  t h e members under t h e  from the c o u n t r y ,  avoided  were e l e v a t e d  sometimes w i t h o u t  Gram  the  the v i l l a g e r s  the  i n f o r m e d about  in the  to  Thus p e o p l e w i t h no  following leaders,  cleavages  not  The e d u c a t e d s e c t i o n  isolated  some p r o m i n e n t  interest  under  from  factional  leaders  They were not  is  the  practical.  o r what was e x p e c t e d of  Mantala  take  leaders  families  and p r o f e s s i o n a l p u r p o s e s . councils  of  contributed  a  reform  t o a s s e m b l e a body of  supporters.  workers  prominent  local as  its  set  seem t o be  have  institution there  new  leaders  The a b s e n c e  d i d not  for Mantala.  influential  traditional  seemed  BNP  of  the  reflected  According to  was c o n s t i t u t e d  BNP and was d o m i n a t e d by  the  Mantala  government  villagers it  between  the d e t r i m e n t  in  the v i l l a g e .  capable  to  trust  .  The c o m p o s i t i o n of Gram S a r k a r desperation  of  Gram  system.  and t h e Gram  Pradhan  1 39  used the  fact  presence  in  government  in Mantala.  choosing to care  to h i s the  village.  p e o p l e who, about  the  coercion  to  Gram P r a d h a n  government. to not  recruit  in  to  did  supporters  the  no  the  be t o o  Thus,  come  the  for  BNP  the  party  w i t h the  setting  up of  and  a local  inducements  or  the  villages  in Mantala.  centre  and  from  from o t h e r  the  of  control  and r e m a i n  directly  the  disinterested  decisions.  the  of  liberty  or be under h i s  not  physical  offices  took  would e i t h e r  had no  institution,  W o r k e r s of  ensure  were  members of Gram S a r k a r  have s t r o n g l i n k s  had  There  he knew,  his  become  The government  The Gram P r a d h a n  local  w o u l d not c h a l l e n g e  the  advantage.  loyal  to  central  worked  hard  The v i l l a g e government  government  did only  institution  Mantala. Only  Sarkar  the  as  Mantala.  it  established  The o t h e r  members  did  not  objectives. manner  Gram Pradhan  in  him  Others  the  were  some  as  members d i d not expect  which  received  new  the  from  legitimate  gain anything. institution  frustrated  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  benefit  ran  with  Gram  leader  Most of  the  to a c c o m p l i s h the  of  its  authoritarian  t h e Gram S a r k a r ,  and  lost  which  was  interest. Gram S a r k a r practically of  the  month,  useless.  institution,  Gram Pradhan these  in Mantala  with  two l e a d e r s their  p e r i o d of  its  it the  In was  r e m a i n e d a body on p a p e r contravention run  h e l p of  almost  of  the  basic  single-handedly  the Member-Secretary.  c l a i m e d t h a t Gram S a r k a r met a t  records existence  show o n l y  principles  least  by  Although once  two m e e t i n g s were h e l d o v e r  in Mantala.  At  least  two  the  members  a the  were  140  below  the  functions been  stipulated expected to  neglected.  controlling  the  age  limit  be c a r r i e d  Feeble  out  attempts  twenty-five years. by  at  the  eradicating  t h e p o p u l a t i o n had not the v i l l a g e .  significant  change  in  an  office  t h e Gram S a r k a r  have  illiteracy brought  Even t h e  c o u l d not  Most  Gram S a r k a r  g r o w t h of  any  for  of  and  about  construction  be a c c o m p l i s h e d i n  of two  years. Mantala system. local The  remains  The  villagers  affairs  after  failure  of  consciousness difficult  minimum.  to  participate excluded the  Sarkars In  Mantala,  BNP  supporters by  country the  was a b l e  to  no  selection  i n the  the  status  of  to  even  more  Participation  was  illiterate village  own  dropped group  they  they  popular  it  gradually  because  of  political  inept  people to the of  t h e members.  the  the  Gram BNP.  i n Gram S a r k a r  The  villagers  To a t t r a c t  and i n c a p a b l e v i l l a g e r s leaders.  of  the  consciousness,  people BNP.  control  Although  followers  to  deliberately  to ensure  partymen.  a  been  d i d not want  were  village  to  had  t o be n o n - p a r t i s a n , most of  level  in  Sarkar.  raise  make  so.  in the  include  recruit  Gram S a r k a r ,  do  were d o m i n a t e d by low  government  in p a r t i c i p a t i n g  will  but  their  T h i s was done t o role  to  beginning,  supposed  due t o  Gram P r a d h a n  problems  attempts  local  e x p e r i e n c e w i t h Gram  background e i t h e r  was the  interest  institution  local  Gram S a r k a r  in  lost  s u c h a scheme, or b e c a u s e  by t h e  institution  effective  but c a p a b l e and w e l l - i n f o r m e d  the  in  an  two-year  new  the  A small  relegated  of  the  future at  have  their  about  for  encouraging  without  the . had  people  to  were e l e v a t e d  to  141  The d e m i s e Mantala  ,  supporter less the  of  nor of  were  the  efforts  government the  of  the  new  followed  not  the  BNP  from t h e  t o p o v e r l o o k e d the  The v i l l a g e was  of  Mantala  aware of  their  in  role  tackling  it.  them  isolated  is  of  and t h e a t t e m p t  regime grass  the  did  of  and  village.  run  local  villagers  in  its  its  p r e p a r i n g the  reforms  spontaneous  imposition  from  preconditions.  apathy  as  the  Gram  g r o u n d by making  the  institutions  in  new  and  to  crippled  government  necessary  The p r o b l e m s p r e v a i l e d ,  through l o c a l  the  to  gradually  Rather  of  through  vision.  result  c o u l d not overcome  possibilities  far  by t h e Gram P r a d h a n  local  not  roots.  realities  of  manner  The s t r a t e g y  staunchest  in Mantala  adequately trust  in  had a c h i e v e d  a distant  prepared  anyone  Even t h e  Gram S a r k a r  still  The l a c k  introduced without  villagers  surprise  sorry.  i n an a u t h o r i t a r i a n  institution.  participation  Sarkar  been  institutions,  not  round development  villagers  had  by  villagers  All  institutions.  local  did  BNP a d m i t t e d t h a t  the  run Gram S a r k a r  the  the  t h a n was d e s i r e d .  Mantala  the  Gram S a r k a r  institution the  chances  became even  remote  the and of in  1 42  NOTES 1  From a p r e l i m i n a r y of Bangladesh , J u l y 3, 1981.  r e p o r t on t h e s e c o n d population census 1981. P u b l i s h e d i n the weekly B i c h i t r a ,  2  The w e e k l y  3  Government of the People's Republic of B a n g l a d e s h D i s t r i c t G a z e t t e e r s Mymensingh B a n g l a d e s h Government P r e s s , 1 9 7 8 ) , p. 350.  4  Most of t h e f i g u r e s i n t h e v i l l a g e s t a t i s t i c s a r e b a s e d on an interview with t h e S e c r e t a r y of t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d of Dulalpur union. The S e c r e t a r y i s a permanent resident of Mantala, and has been i n v o l v e d i n l o c a l i n s t i t u t i o n s f o r many y e a r s . He was i n t e r v i e w e d on J u n e 15, 1982.  5  One maund i s  6  A s p e c i a l i z e d bank d e s i g n e d t o  7  Government of t h e P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of B a n g l a d e s h , Population S t a t i s t i c s , Kishoreqanj Subdivision B a n g l a d e s h Government P r e s s , 1 9 7 6 ) .  8  The major r e l i g i o u s f e s t i v a l s of the Muslims. They are c e l e b r a t e d t w i c e e v e r y y e a r b a s e d on t h e l u n a r c a l e n d a r .  9  The Fund was c o n s t i t u t e d under B e n g a l A c t V I I I t o l l s were l e v i e d on r o a d s and f e r r i e s .  10  A Committee c r e a t e d i n 1871 t o d e t e r m i n e and how i t was t o be s p e n t .  the  11  The Gram P r a d h a n  1,  12  Sheikh A z i z u r  13  The p o l i t i c a l p a r t y has c e a s e d t o e x i s t independence. Kala Miah claimed he a f f i l i a t i o n a l l these y e a r s .  14  K a l a M i a h was  15  Abdur R a s h i d  16  A b u l Hashem was  17  A s i r u d d i n was  18  S u r u j M i a h was  19  Arifur  Bichitra,  July  equivalent  was  3,  to 82.3 l b s .  the  on J u n e  interviewed  interviewed  on J u n e  interviewed interviewed  interviewed interviewed  Rahman was  or  serve  interviewed  Rahman was  was  1981.  14,  on J u n e 8, on J u n e 9,  interviewed  agriculturists. Village (Dhaka:  1851 and of  cess  1982. 13,  1982.  in Bangladesh since had no political  1982. 1982.  1982. 1982.  on June 2,  of  rate  1982.  on J u n e 4, on June  37.3 kgs. •  on J u n e  10,  Bangladesh, (Dacca:  1982.  143  20  M a s t u M i a n was i n t e r v i e w e d  21  Abdus Sabur  22  Rabeya K h a t o o n was i n t e r v i e w e d  was i n t e r v i e w e d  on June 5, 1982. on June  6, 1982.  on June  13, 1982.  144  VI.  NEW LEADERSHIP AND DOMINATION: COMILLA  Gram S a r k a r district  of  initiated  in  Yet,  regular  slightly  this  interactions  the  by  was  village. family,  the  and a r e  Colipur  in  the  m o b i l i z a t i o n has  been  progressed  parts  government  of  the  very  local  emergence the  institution.  government  in C o l i p u r .  of  a  two  new  to dominate C o l i p u r  and a  in  some  However, constant  institutions, The  set  leaders  far.  country,  l e a d e r s h i p and b e c a u s e of  ineffective  able  in  COLIPUR,  conscious population resulted  older  Unfortunately,  of  not  with other  alternative  rendered  was  process  new l o c a l  the  better  but has  more p o l i t i c a l l y  domination  change  The  village,  t h e a b s e n c e of  Sarkar  marginally  Comilla.  optimism about in  fared  GRAM SARKAR IN  only  of  sign  of  for  the  leaders  belong  to  Gram  the  same  i n c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h one  another. .  THE VILLAGE The Tropic  administrative  of  Cancer  i n the  British  East  India  1790.  The  Government  1  district  district  south-eastern  Company c r e a t e d  to C o m i l l a in  of 1960.  the  most  of  changed  in C o m i l l a  an  6,880,000.  populous d i s t r i c t  population  r e g i o n of  Comilla covers  w i t h a p o p u l a t i o n of  density  Comilla is  the d i s t r i c t  Pakistan  square m i l e s second  of  is  2  situated  the  Bangladesh.  The  of  Tippera  in  the  name of  the  area  After  in Bangladesh. 2654  on  persons  of  Dhaka,  2594 it  is  The  average  per  square  144a  MAP 3.  COMILLA  DISTRICT  1 45  mile,  which  works  Agriculture  is  residents.  Rice,  major  crops.  district (North)  out  the  0.23  principal jute,  Colipur  in  to  acres  occupation  oilseeds,  is  located  Muradnagar  police  s u b d i v i s i o n , about  of  l a n d per of  chillies  in  the  twenty-one  most  under  miles  of  side  the  of  the  the C o m i l l a  west of  the  3  the  and wheat a r e  western  station  person.  Sadar  town  of  Comilla. Colipur  covers  3547 v i l l a g e r s , in of  of  an  area  of  whom 1818 a r e  578 h o u s e h o l d s . " T h e r e a r e the  village.  settlers, to  the  over  is  hundred y e a r s . There  is  a Muslim f a q i r  as  expansion revenue  holy  there  was  government  a s w e l l as  the  and  same  females of  the  lands  of  that  origin  attracted  various  services for  agriculturists  C o l i p u r has his  by  living  has been known t o e x i s t  pitched  need f o r  the in  time,  a formal  beginning  and  prospered  tent  in  the of in  was  the  the  rule,  changes  government  continued to c o l l e c t  of by in  the  structured the  tax  population  body f o r making of  local  Gradually,  visits  increase  collection  the  small.  frequent  local  its  a body t o manage  establishment  Company made no and  to provide  settlement  resulted  facilitating  the  fertile  a village  little  the  need f o r  1729  inhabited  ago.  of  the  is  man)  administration  generated  It  (a  s i z e of  At  village  belief  the  collector.  At  the  a popular  a hundred y e a r s  Initially, affairs  The  and i s  no w r i t t e n a c c o u n t s  assumed t h a t  cultivators.  three  village  m a l e s and  and more p e o p l e came l a t e r  fishermen. since  It  1318 a c r e s  decisions  revenue. the  existing revenue  British system  East of  India  village  and a d m i n i s t e r  the  1 46  district local  w i t h t h e h e l p of  b o d i e s were s e t  and  to  provide  the  villages  up t o  services  including  expansions.  Local  subdivision  and  and d i s t r i c t  headquarters  were  highway. other of  The  times,  the  is  about  trip  village  is  of  and j u t e and wheat respectively.  Most of land  in  these  Most  owns  in  sharecropping.  of The  bargaining capacity  will  in  by  these at  the  subdivision of  Comilla.  Dhaka-Chittagong  the  dry  an h o u r .  are  but a  about  the  season. The  few of  is  still  shallow  tube  water thirty  twenty  villagers  At  economy  farming  and  in the  dry  maunds p e r twenty-two  think  substantially  cultivate  addition  their  better  increase  the the  the  own  tiny  to c u l t i v a t i n g  cent  are  the  landless. land,  land, Only  rents  arrangements  tenants.  In  the  vary  of  land  as  Many a d u l t s  of  and  out  plots  others'  landless.  a s m a l l amount of  tenure of  are  most of  crops.  than  most  is  of  share  which  There  returns  the  condition  the  approximately  About t e n p e r  better  over  But  and t i m e c o n s u m i n g .  walked  takes  and  town  rice  sharecroppers. same f a m i l y  the  north off be  revenue  were i n s t i t u t e d  The d i s t r i c t in  Later,  5  of  touched  due t o l a c k  the v i l l a g e r s  Colipur,  not  suffers  facilities of  Boards  ways.  agriculture  Productivity  productivity  District  can  Nawab.  urban a r e a s .  b a s e d on a g r i c u l t u r e ,  but  irrigation  the were  by b o a t  wells,  maunds  local  the c o l l e c t i o n  Colipur  two m i l e s  on i n p r i m i t i v e  acre,  the  town was d i f f i c u l t  carried  season.  outside  located  distance  the  of  facilitate  levels.  both  Communication w i t h the Colipur  officers  are  Bhuiya  their  in  family,  land  for  a c c o r d i n g to  most c a s e s ,  the  no  the  tenant  147  has t o b e a r  the  the  are  crops  other  cases,  third  of  records Due  cost  lack  methods  landless  labourers  finding  Another  it  the  goes t o  get  farming  are  seed,  of  output  loyalty to  of  fertilizers  shared e q u a l l y  the  the  of  costs  by t h e  of  then e n t i t l e d  cultivated  for  location  amount of  is  are  no  employment  n o t work This  in  per  Parishad  is  towns.  plot,  the  agriculture.  cent  of  forty  physical  to other  work  in of  The  not  are  who have of  w i t h whatever  cultivators. or  other  cent  sources  i n c r e a s e d by  of  to  the  I  in C o l i p u r  products  about Union  got is  the  observing impression  around  are are  can  reasons.  By  headquarters  population  of  the v i l l a g e r s  exaggerated.  the d i s t r i c t  agricultural  being  even aware  satisfied  villagers,  the  rights  cultivator  family  According  per  returns.  h a n d i c a p s and o t h e r  non-workers  remainder The  decade.  t o be somewhat  and t a l k i n g  ten per The  industries  nearly  appears  by t h e  The  opportunities  lands  same t e n a n t  and t h u s a r e  long  low.  cultivating  Some  are  a  traditional  on t h e s e  crop.  owners  with  is  employment  landowner.  by t h e  last  and  productivity  The p o p u l a t i o n has  due t o o l d a g e ,  the p e r c e n t a g e  Another  facilities  survive  and  lands.  the  The l e g a l  small  Chairman,  figure  the  handed o v e r  over  better  to acquire  Colipur.  cent  the v i l l a g e that  the  return  There  thirty  of  the  equally,  The t e n a n t s  tenure  retain  owners.  shared  to  generations  become de f a c t o the  to  In  difficult  by p a y i n g a f i x e d sum of money t o is  tenant.  tenant.  w i t h no a l t e r n a t i v e  arrangement  owner and t h e  the  implements,  extremely  and  is  irrigation  and  inputs,  input  to c u l t i v a t e  of  and o t h e r  thirty. and  other  engaged  in  marketed  at  1 48  Elliotganj,  a  highway. but  big  There  is  the v i l l a g e r s  Private  money  marketing a bank  are  not  lending  centre  on  the  in E l l i o t g a n j yet  no  used  longer  which  to  x  Dhaka-Chittagong  the  appears  serves  Colipur  banking  ,  system.  t o be common i n  the  village. The n e a r e s t Comilla.  railway  The  station  village  is  C h i t t a g o n g and C o m i l l a . available Dhaka  at  many r a d i o  receiver  There washermen the  war  were  at of  composition  religions of  the  about  (North) about  24 p e r c e n t . (a  they  Their  6  but  There  school for  percentage  than  school  in E l l i o t g a n j .  medical p r a c t i t i o n e r s with other  There  from  India  teaching  there  attend  after  in C o l i p u r .  no H i n d u s The  social  per  thana  and  Comilla  the d i s t r i c t school  subjects  average  and  or  three  but a the  very high  qualified  The r o a d s and b r i d g e s been p r o p e r l y  of  Arabic).  and go on t o  dispensaries  Sadar  and  institutions,  studies  have not  or  ranges around eighteen  primary  no  local  the  these  their  and  over  religious  There are  are  changed markedly  below one  are  sets.  Islam in C o l i p u r .  literacy  are  areas  return  has not  from  s e r v i n g as b a r b e r s  present,  well  complete  are  h o m e s t e a d s were p u r c h a s e d by  Muradnagar  two h u n d r e d s t u d e n t s  village  d i d not  At  other  as  small  the  but  families  Dhaka,  reach C o l i p u r  television  Hindu  in  facilities  a s w e l l as a few  The r a t e o f same  can  away  from  r e a d them.  village  Subdivision,  Madrasas About  the  road  few p e o p l e  cheap p r i c e s .  few y e a r s .  cent,  Newspapers very  few  liberation.  residents  last  sets  a  by  miles  T e l e g r a p h and t e l e p h o n e  but  in C o l i p u r ,  of  followers  hours,  twenty-one  accessible  Elliotganj.  i n a few  is  linking  maintained.  1 49  Some mills,  villagers  and work a t  have  other  i n consumer and l u x u r y people  go  out  of  cities.  Thus t h e r e  village  to  Colipur  remains  the  conditions. of  money  the  for  land  village  of  the  look  their  at  them  village.  money i n  the  There  gatherings get  a  in E l l i o t g a n j .  to  seek  and b a c k .  flow  of  spite  conservative  with  better  living  , but  properties the  C o l i p u r does not  to  as  loss  the  towns and  a  in  the  job.  urban  invest  the  This  from i t s  amounts  educational  urban  improving l i v i n g  benefit  living  i n the  and  the  exposures,  substantial  and l i v e  live  Many  from  these  insurance against  of in  in  A small percentage  continue  rice bring  primitive  conditions  children.  or  village.  people of  p e o p l e who e a r n  in  areas. failure  uncertainty conditions  people  in  earning  towns. are  eleven  for  held  mosques  in e a c h .  h o l d i n g the  where t h e  Eid  influential  chance  to  village  leaders  convene meetings  volume  of  leaders  and t h e  number of  the  In  of  stores,  These people  employment  constant  from i n v e s t i n g  congregations are designated  a  their  these  businesses,  purchase p r o p e r t i e s  b u s i n e s s or  inhibits the  is  to  facilities  They  Colipur  highly  of  up  goods t o be u s e d i n  The m a j o r i t y  a r e a s because  in  jobs  towns  prefer  set  address  attendance  There  Colipur,  is  prayers.  a  These are  p e r s o n s and villagers. in  their  the  issues  to  and  large  At  other  regular  open the  religious  space biggest leaders  times,  baithak-khana•  v a r i e s d e p e n d i n g on t h e  u r g e n c y of  such meetings  the  in  be  seems t o be d e c r e a s i n g .  influence discussed.  7  of  the The the The  1 50  TRADITION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT Local formation Act  of  government of  the  1919.  formed i n  the  his  1950s.  obviously owned Ali  alive,  enjoyed  due t o h i s  The  partition of  family  in  Colipur.  farmers  in  the  to  family  become  of  the  as  1947  of  Ali  Asgar,  farmers.  This  village.  of  t h e r e was no  farmers  to  They  became  Bhuiyas.  and i n  were  return,  relationship  take  village.  Bhuiya  not  over  independent  affect  has not  in  the  in  1971.  in  small  affairs  more benefits  him the  land  in  in  out  continuation  developed  of to of  dominating of  institutions  changed c i r c u m s t a n c e s  Bhuiya  Hindu  They were t e n a n t s  getting helped  the  sharecropping  acquired  resulted  The d o m i n a t i o n of R a f i q u d d i n  8  was  him.  prominent  received  and g r a d u a l l y  q u o , and t h e v i l l a g e  leaders  family  challenge  did  the  village,  His  Rafiquddin d i d not  until  the  in C o l i p u r .  Union  A s g a r was a i d e d by a number of  l a n d owned by t h e  the  Bangladesh  since  group  Asgar,  and  in  the p o s t over  himself.  the  i n and a r o u n d t h e  family  India  Ali  This  middle  status  long  the  village,  supporting A l i  the  land  involved  r u n n i n g t h e U n i o n B o a r d and managing l o c a l  the v i l l a g e .  the  the  members of  composition  rights  of  in  c o u l d be  influential  nominated  control  position  f a c e d no p r o b l e m as  and o t h e r  was  effective  and most get  the  Self-Government  the Union Boards  and r e m a i n e d  father's  two-thirds  Village  d i d not  Asgar,  1920s,  in Comilla a f t e r  The r i c h e s t  Bhuiya,  son, A l i the  He  about  Asgar  in  the  lapsed before  Rafiquddin  eldest  develop  under  remote v i l l a g e s .  Board P r e s i d e n t late  to  Union Boards  Some t i m e  man i n C o l i p u r , Instead,  began  went u n c h a l l e n g e d  after  until  151  his  death  in  political power to  the  late  movements  1940s. against  and r e s o u r c e s was  local  on  projects,  need.  His  not a c u t e .  was  (sections), two  divided  share,  In  spite  of  the  There  were  rivalry  A s g a r assumed t h e as  the  authority  Eastern  between  President  hishya.  Ali  Meanwhile,  alliances  with Ali  back by  some of  by  the  courts.  became s t r o n g e r  as  sons  Asgar.  of  small  the  the  hishyas sons  farmers  in  years,  for  The  smaller.  in  hishyas.  several  in  he  years,  from  the  to  objective  s u c c e e d , but  court  Although  trying  to  and  resulting  the v i l l a g e  awarded  most  property  Bhuiyas  brother  principal  Asgar's  fair,  Colipur.  was  of  daughters  the  and W e s t e r n  eldest  hishya  d i d not Ali  as  c h a l l e n g e d by t h e the  of  of The  each h i s h y a .  giving  thirty  be  family.  among  The d i v i s i o n  last  property  some of  to  and W e s t e r n  in  able  in periods  the  the Union Board  Their  the  was  land  became c o n s i d e r a b l y  l e a d e r s h i p of  small  They  in  Eastern  the E a s t e r n  the E a s t e r n  l e a d e r s h i p of force  the  A s g a r was  some  leader  e a c h son owned more l a n d t h a n  was c o n t i n u a l l y  hishya.  for  them  the concerned p a r t i e s over  Competition  villagers  after  in C o l i p u r .  continued  and c o n f l i c t  Ali  his  divisions,  a c c e p t e d by a l l  the  six and  by  d o n a t i n g money f o r  landed p r o p e r t y ,  landed property  villagers  have  served  the  these  other  not  cases  of  giving  split  the  h o m e s t e a d became f r a g m e n t e d , their  by  a  into  a l o n g w i t h the  wives.  in  affected  The d o m i n a n t  and l e n d i n g money t o resulted  not  rule.  sharecropping b a s i s ,  death  homestead  his  a  was  colonial  keep t h e p o p u l a t i o n s a t i s f i e d  cultivated  was  Colipur  the  Western  build  up  against  the  was  to  take  the Western  hishya  the  hishya  brothers  Eastern  were out of  the  1 52  village their  attending  education,  the  they  University  secured  visited  C o l i p u r once or  a leader  of  Provincial Ali leaders  Asgar  political the  the  growth of  the  industries  and win  his  areas,  them l a t e r  to  the  in  the  some  saw  1950s and  of in  as  next  generation  Western h i s h y a s , of  their  education,  a wide network  rural  p o o r of  they  The able  held  1960s,  good  Colipur.  very  village  valuable  the  and  out h i s  job market,  positions. job  factories  t o p r o v i d e more  But  the  resulted  to  the  Ali  and won o v e r  the  own as w e l l a s h i s  for  last  to the  long.  towns  first,  jobs.  a b s e n c e of  b e g i n n i n g of  Asgar  and  because  C o l i p u r , and were  by p r o v i d i n g them w i t h j o b s  physical  in the  and  opportunities  B h u i y a s went out  labour.  Eastern  d i d not  the  rapid  They were a b l e  Bhuiyas continued to prosper outside  Nevertheless, brother,  the  loyal  through  During mills  village  b u i l d i n g up a  from b o t h t h e  These o p p o r t u n i t i e s  t o h e l p some v i l l a g e r s  cities.  Bhuiyas,  for arranging  the Western h i s h y a were a b l e  the  were now e n t e r i n g  create  Since  of  the  his  government  towns.  of  i n D h a k a , C h i t t a g o n g and K h u l n a were e m p l o y i n g u n s k i l l e d The  and  became  twice  loyalty  patronage  These people  working  the  to  c o n n e c t i o n w i t h the  in  urban  One of  He t u r n e d  in C o l i p u r .  family  the  completing  Pakistan.  family.  Western h i s h y a ' s  in  After  and was e l e c t e d  who had been e n j o y i n g base  members of  East  (AL),  had t o c u l t i v a t e  outside  supporters  jobs  twice a year.  t h e Awami League A s s e m b l y of  of D a c c a .  still  the  this  generation  erosion  commanded r e s p e c t  s u p p o r t of brothers'  the  local  of as  the  from  the  control. the  p e o p l e by  land to h i s  in  eldest renting  followers  for  1 53  cultivation. get  their  He  decided  of  Ali  landowning B h u i y a s , the  conscious were s e t the  of  only  and t h e  the  need f o r  of  Colipur  which  only  one b r o t h e r  the  Western  hishyas.  hishya  1973, t h e  increased of  local  thought  their  capable  leaders  was  grievances  of  the  succeeded in g e t t i n g  living  over  as  to  results.  They  family,  period.  the The  subsequently  p u r c h a s e d more l a n d  links  the  AL,  Gradually, The  and l a t e r  Chairman  under w h i c h C o l i p u r was of  Ali  Asgar  in  1960.  family of  committees  materials,  government By  schoolmaster  of  in  also  from  to Ali  in  the the  provide Asgar  had  communicating  Bhuiyas  had  this  b u s i n e s s m a n from  leaders  the  and  the v i l l a g e  disinclined  Sarkars, family  establishments  the  villagers  needed  in  the  and  sometimes  improved  their  urban c o n n e c t i o n s .  business  leaders.  to  bodies  could acquire.  a retired  intermediate  operating  with  village  and  the  relief  of  local  relief  permanently  villagers  farmer  this  AL  some f o l l o w e r s  economic c o n d i t i o n s t h r o u g h t h e middle  made  to d i s t r i b u t e  Meanwhile,  themselves  (BNP).  who was  status  i m p o r t a n c e of  leaders.  Zahed A l i ,  established  influence  brothers  absentee  Bangladesh  were b o t h t o o o l d  leadership.  One  his  Mahtabuddin, a former  and  Eastern hishya, local  in  up i n many v i l l a g e s  assistance,  e a c h of  Asgar  independence  residents  time,  of  lands.  The d e a t h  after  on b e h a l f  the  gained acquired  in  in C o l i p u r . the  Bangladesh  gained  the  Paharpur  wealth  by  Elliotganj,  and  The  had  Sarkars  Nationalist  status  (South)  i n c l u d e d , was e l e c t e d  considerable  with  Party  of  village  Union  Parishad  the  support  The C h a i r m a n , Mozammel H o s s a i n  Sarkar,  1 54  was  a  permanent  considerable accepted  with  as  man.  a  family  for  leader  Bari  provided without  leadership  village,  and t h e i r  National The v i l l a g e r s in C o l i p u r , also  percentage  the  in  the  especially  facilities  in  for  leadership  of  election  w i t h the A L .  The BNP wanted  they  side.  But  Colipur.* office  in  thought  leaders  in  of  it  of  1981 the  would  inter-party  conflict  There  no  are  the v i l l a g e .  and  impact  of  these  essential  commodities,  of  ticket.  for  the  because  they  got  t o work  has been kept  BNP  The p o l i t i c a l  parties  A small The Asgar,  a not  have  East  present in  the  disillusioned  for  to  offices,  Ali  The  be w i s e t o be on t h e  government  prevailing  A s s e m b l y of  worked  the  Colipur.  parties.  and a b r o t h e r  leaders  in  stronger. on  political  and  Gram S a r k a r  alliance  the P r o v i n c i a l  from  Colipur,  and c o m m u n i c a t i o n .  for  strong here,  Gram S a r k a r  Bhuiya  made them f o r m i d a b l e  cultivation  links  two b r o t h e r s  The  high prices  presidential  and  the  concerned with s i t u a t i o n s  to  his  recommends  of  Union P a r i s h a d  support  most  Thus t h e  and 1970 on t h e p a r t y ' s  the  the  brother,  members  others.  was e l e c t e d  1954  become  villagers  to maintain  has not had a major  the  acquired  The  w i t h t h e AL made them even  expressed t h e i r  H a f i z u d d i n Ahmed,  as  h i shya  primarily  AL has a l w a y s been v e r y  Pakistan  by  Western  politics are  the  emerged  links  had  he c o n t i n u e s  to  had  years.  and a l o n g w i t h h i s  being challenged with  and  have  and  ten  he  the urban a r e a s .  9  leaders  next  since  Even t o d a y ,  in  Colipur,  the  sharecropping  living  Sarkar  of  over  the Western h i s h y a ,  cultivators  the  influence  him  influential  resident  the  party,  government's minimum  in  even a p o s t not  set  up  155  permanent  offices.  and w o r k e r s .voters.  their  they  determine  followings in  from o t h e r But  alliances  Only d u r i n g e l e c t i o n s , villages have  election.  c o n d u c t e d on l i n e s  not  the v o t i n g  and a l l i a n c e s  gather  of  effective  patterns.  Thus l o c a l completely  local  followers  t o h o l d m e e t i n g s and  been  local  the  The  candidates  politics unlike  because  personal are  the  those  at  local images,  key  and e l e c t i o n s  woo  factors  have  the  been  national  level.  SWANIRVAR GRAM SARKAR Like impact rule. the  of  most the  The  first,  albeit  in  local  of  represent  change Circle  of  by c r e a t i n g Officer  Gram S a r k a r  in  Union  government  leaders  For  families  Council.  the were  In  in the the  in a meeting attended Taher Hossain  C h a i r m a n , was of  s e l e c t e d as  no  British  to  change came  1960.  unit  felt  1920s p r o v i d e d  local  thana announced  members.  submitted a l i s t  in  the  with first  elected  1980,  s o u g h t t o b r i n g about a n o t h e r  o f Muradnagar  the Union P a r i s h a d  in the  The n e x t major held  Colipur  during  for  the dominant  the  a local  and t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d  He  in  Colipur  area,  government  affairs.  Bangladesh  the  opportunity  from o u t s i d e  Colipur  in  the Union Boards  limited,  in p u b l i c  villagers  Government  of  villages  Basic Democracies e l e c t i o n s  time, to  changes creation  participate the  other  important  village. formation  by t h e  the  The of  villagers  Sarkar,  brother  t h e Gram  Pradhan  p e o p l e t o be s e l e c t e d  as Gram S a r k a r  1 56  members, and t h e y  were a c c e p t e d by t h e Gram S h a v a .  n o m i n a t e d members were not p r e s e n t The  members  r e c o r d s of these  its  out  from  Sarkar the  the  failure  leaders  f a t e of  i n the  were  the  also  summaries  interviewed  consist  a variety  of of  help  the  of  have had  new  their  w i t h the  to  draw  Gram S a r k a r  institution  of  in  extent  duties.  intention  in C o l i p u r .  their  maintained  in a s s e s s i n g the  performance  institution  following of  will  I  and o p i n i o n s o f of  the  meeting.  and o p e r a t i o n .  recollections  These  this  i n C o l i p u r have not  o r i g i n and o p e r a t i o n  village.-  s u c c e s s or  Gram S a r k a r  constitution  members on t h e the  of  at  Many of  of  The Gram explaining  As can be seen  in  the  b a c k g r o u n d and e x p e r i e n c e ,  they  people with widely  different  levels  of  capability. Taher thanks  Hossain  to the  Chairman.  influence  Taher  non-Matric.  1 0  Sarkar  was  of  time  the  was  and P a k i s t a n i  service,  but  brother,  t h e Gram  the  involved  commander periods.  of  t h e AL  Sangram C o m m i t t e e  1 1  and during  in the  Later,  served the  he became a member of  local  Taher  himself  joined  the  for a  long  the R e l i e f  the  government .  He was  an  of  the  Chairman  liberation  a  mills  guards d u r i n g  to the v i l l a g e as  Parishad  and o i l  affairs  local  Pradhan,  Union  y e a r s o l d , and c a l l e d  s u b s e q u e n t l y came back  a c t i v e member o f  independence,  as  He was a b u s i n e s s m a n and owned r i c e He had been  British  selected  his  sixty-five  in E l l i o t g a n j . and  was  war.  After  Committee  in  the  area. Taher  said  that  he s h i f t e d h i s  became t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  He d i d n o t  support to face  the  BNP a f t e r  any p r e s s u r e  from  he the  157  party  in  selecting  s e l e c t e d as  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  l e a d and d e v e l o p convene  meetings and  specific  he  of  in  the  various  that  he  A " h a n d f u l " d i d not  in  the  villagers over  wanted  policy  thought  s c h o o l as  to  Taher link  and  of  join  benefitted of  Colipur, the  his  said  included.  as  to  the  the basic  allocating regular members  that the  he c o u l d o n l y  BNP a n d h i s  fifty  council.  his  reason  for  fairly villagers  He s t a t e d  but  only  that  the  his  but  that honest  control  He s t a t e d  Gram S a r k a r ,  that  cited  joining  the  name c a n a l  party.  lack  d i g g i n g and a in  the  of  funds.  as a l e a d e r  fairly  in  to  night  village.  the  the the  had been g o i n g a c c o r d i n g  be done due t o  had e s t a b l i s h e d h i m s e l f  been  over  decreasing.  everything  living  appreciated  had  Taher a d m i t t e d  from  improve  l e a d e r s h i p and d i s o b e y e d  a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s of Gram S a r k a r  w i t h the  and  for  to  attended  Gram S a r k a r  Gram S a r k a r ,  t h e BNP a s h i s  s a i d t h a t much c o u l d not  His  such  Gram S a r k a r  meetings  A l t h o u g h he c l a i m e d t h a t in  like  p e o p l e was g r a d u a l l y  BNP and Z i a had  plan  disregard  , and t h a t most v i l l a g e r s  Colipur,  had been  local  honest  He  bi-weekly  people  had  towns  had worked h a r d t o  efforts.  successful  was  t o t h e members and c o n v e n i n g  in C o l i p u r  many  total  was  wanted him  He  villages,  Gram S a r k a r ,  conditions  attended  disputes.  he  portfolios.  claimed  decisions.  thought  Gram P r a d h a n  He c o u l d not name t h e d i f f e r e n t  Taher  his  He  villagers  as  other  demonstrated  organizing  the  job  adjudicate  responsibilities  meetings. holding  His  conferences  But  procedures  and  members.  because  Colipur.  meetings  capital.  Gram S a r k a r  He  village.  successful business  career  158  were c o n s i d e r e d u s e f u l contacts  with  influence  as  other  its  strong  made T a h e r put  the  him  leader  for  of  members,  advantage  its  and  the  resident  of  He was  Education,  Colipur.  out  neutral  when he s e r v e d  He  thought  he  of  the  leader.  Bazlur  could .  The l a c k  Gram P r a d h a n with  But  the  his  the  allocated  held  was  1  the  not  been  of  Gram  of  over  land  although  others  left  because  developed  in  were  politically he  was  the  party.  the  cooperating  an  villagers  and e d u c a t e d w o r k e r ,  by  a  permanent  which  he was  formally  at  degrees  t h e most e d u c a t e d  on t h e Gram S a r k a r ,  be  have  among  had  bachelor  He c l a i m e d t h a t  selected  also  s u c c e s s as a  Member-Secretary  Bazlur and  of  Bhuiyas  and  He a c c e p t e d t h e p o s i t i o n b e c a u s e he b e l i e v e d  village  government  brother's  villagers.  c o n s i d e r e d him t o be an e n t h u s i a s t i c good  status.  Gram S a r k a r  t h e AL and had not  was  his  close  t h i r t y - t w o y e a r s o l d and t a u g h t  cultivation.  supporter  His  i n C o l i p u r d i d not  He owned some p l o t s  rented  active  for  of  Rahman was  in E l l i o t g a n j .  and  others.  were not  the  and  alliance  Gram S a r k a r  objectives  in C o l i p u r .  Commerce  members  His  own, p o r t f o l i o s  Mohammad B a z l u r  high school  villagers.  p o s i t i o n of  over  u n d e r s t o o d by t h e members or  Sarkar  the  an unanimous c h o i c e . an  the  C h a i r m a n had a d d e d t o h i s  open t o q u e s t i o n .  an o f f i c e  by  Union P a r i s h a d  candidates  at  is  assets  with  a  that the  2  admitted  that  The government d i d not  live  village  organization  in  projects  were t r i e d ,  but  Gram S a r k a r up t o all  they  its  had f a i l e d  promises  respects. failed  due t o  of  in C o l i p u r . helping  Only a d u l t lack  of  the  education funds  for  159  arranging Bazlur  lights,  blackboards  t h o u g h t Gram S a r k a r  leadership.  He  had not  pointed  out  s e r i o u s problem in C o l i p u r . work  with  the  BNP-dominated  Colipur.  found f a u l t The  meeting  to  Chairman  be  held  made  a  the  Union P a r i s h a d  he  on  the  and t h e  were w a i t i n g recording  for  them.  d i s c u s s e d by t h e  local  not  In few  system to o p e r a t e occasional  that  Union  village  made  no  of  the  Parishad the  attempt  Gram P r a d h a n , the  to with  people  were n o t  held  filed.  They  r e c o r d e d or on a  in  o b j e c t e d and  meetings  but  to  Gram S a r k a r  The  meetings  people p r e s e n t ,  most  difficult  C h a i r m a n , would have The  the  informed  Nobody  p r o c e e d i n g s were not  the  of  influential  Gram S a r k a r .  local  problems.  purpose.  the  as  it  properly  Bazlur  teachers.  develop  and f e l t  formation  However,  t h e h e l p of  regularly,  find  members.  b e c a u s e he knew t h a t  wanted  solve  this  of  members were s e l e c t e d . protest  to  to  of  unemployment  Gram S a r k a r ,  were  for  list  been a b l e  high  w i t h the  villagers  remuneration  He d i d not  b a s e d p l a n n i n g was e s s e n t i a l Bazlur  and  full  scale  local  p r o b l e m s were  no c o n c r e t e  before  programmes  c o u l d be a d o p t e d . The  other  different years store  power  members  o p i n i o n s on t h e s e m a t t e r s .  old,  and had r e a d up t o c l a s s  in E l l i o t g a n j ,  r e n t e d out Sarkar  Gram S a r k a r  for  since  and p o p u l a r .  1 3  he was p o w e r f u l . elected  The v i l l a g e  Colipur  A l f u Mia seven.  and a s i z e a b l e amount  cultivation.  because g e t t i n g  in  He t h o u g h t  had  was  thirty-five  He owned a of  land  he was  widely  grocery  which  selected  to  was Gram  He a l w a y s s u p p o r t e d t h e p a r t y was p r o o f  that  could benefit  only  the p a r t y by  was  following  in  right the  160  governing party.  The government would a i d  a  when  all  village  only  Gram S a r k a r  school  Majid  getting was  until  in  problems  Since  Majhi  them.  Sabdar  neutral officials Sabdar village  Sarkar  he  that  the  was  eight  number  of  no  Party  chance  support to the  his  attended  Awami  BNP  of  which  selection  to  name was a p p r o v e d . the  the  was n e v e r of  years  his  meetings  the  year  put  had  outside his  sons t i l l  villagers any  old,  the  1974,  how t o  solve  understanding  and he  claimed  He t h o u g h t  1 5  He  cultivating  fields but  hearing  village.  and made a l i v i n g  interviewed.  self-government.  apparently  attend  s y s t e m c o u l d s o l v e most of  seventy  helps to  be  the  government  their  problems.  or  interest  in  He was p r o b a b l y s e l e c t e d a s a member  s i n c e he s u p p o r t e d t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  was  had  he had a t t e n d e d a l l  was  d i d not d e m o n s t r a t e  Forty-five  large  know a b o u t h i s  s u p p o r t e d t h e AL u n t i l  not a t t e n d any  o l d and has  party  not want t o t r a v e l  should t e l l  Gram S a r k a r  years  two months a f t e r  At p r e s e n t  when  a  of  Colipur.  did  own l a n d .  that  shifted his  and t h o u g h t  Ali  and  the  He came t o  1 0  A l f u d i d not  He s u p p o r t e d t h e N a t i o n a l  a t t e n d e d s c h o o l up t o c l a s s his  thirty  he c l a i m e d t h a t  t h e p r o b l e m s of Sabdar  stated  was  1975.  about  Gram S a r k a r  support.  development  meetings.  seven.  1979.  Gram S a r k a r  Surprisingly, of  the  into o f f i c e ,  i n power  the  at  Majhi  up t o c l a s s  (pro-Moscow)  received  m e e t i n g s but  p e o p l e were p r e s e n t Abdul  it  i n the  He s t a t e d  into operation  repeatedly  i n C o l i p u r , and he  that did  meetings. o l d Chand M i a was an i l l i t e r a t e  selected  to  the  Gram S a r k a r  to  farmer  represent  and the  161  southern areas the of  AL,  but  of  started  Gram S a r k a r .  membership only  Colipur.  He was p r e v i o u s l y  1 6  s u p p o r t i n g t h e BNP a f t e r  He knew o n l y  to  the  two o t h e r  Sarkar  i n C o l i p u r was t h e d i v e r g e n c e  that  members and t h e Kadam A l i amount  of  else  the  it  and  of  eliminated,  leaders  that  joined  the  years  two d i d .  the  the  class  five.  eight  to the  people.  s u c c e s s of  Gram  council  fifty  BNP,  was  his  meagre  BNP b e c a u s e  everybody  c o u l d be u s e f u l  He a t t e n d e d a  that  to  the  couple  of  listen  Gram S a r k a r  would s t i l l  and  be  to  c o u l d be able  to  his  own  villagers. years  Joynal  arid s i n c e  and  Mujibur the  that  to accomplish i t s  land  years out  village  He f e l t  capable.  He f e l t  Rahman  other  he m i s s e d o n l y o n e .  forty-five own  Sheikh  f o l l o w e d them.  enough t i m e  He r e n t e d h i s  o l d and c u l t i v a t e d  t h e d e a t h of  BNP d u r i n g e l e c t i o n s .  Ahmad  the  felt  became c o r r u p t ,  i n C o l i p u r d i d not g e t Mansur  He a t t e n d e d  t h e Gram Pradhan d i d not  m e e t i n g s , and t h o u g h t t h a t  worked f o r  accepted  He had no e d u c a t i o n ,  1 7  run.  s e l e c t e d b e c a u s e he was h o n e s t  five  and  old, cultivated  the Union P a r i s h a d  t h e AL a f t e r  The p a r t y  1 8  establishment  v i e w s among t h e  Gram S a r k a r  Kadam  Hoq was o v e r  He l e f t  of  from t h e AL t o  others.  and t h a t  Joynal  obstacle  boats.  was not p r o p e r l y  p r o v i d e guidance to  1975.  rowed  but c o m p l a i n e d t h a t  views  land.  main  was s i x t y  He b e l i e v e d  but  meetings,  Bepari  allegiance  did.  village,  the  of  villagers.  land  shifted his  was  the  one m e e t i n g w h i c h was a t t e n d e d by s e v e n or thought  supporter  members,  body b e c a u s e t h e o t h e r  Chand  in  a  He  that  he  attended J o y n a l Hoq  Gram  Sarkar  objectives.  o l d and had r e a d up t o for  cultivation  and  162  worked  as  business. the  1 9  a  contractor's  He s u p p o r t e d t h e  governing party.  assistant  was  The v i l l a g e r s  frequently  out  wanted  of  any m e e t i n g o v e r  Sarkar  He d i d not  t h e members s h o u l d a l l supporters  to  construction  him a s a  the  Gram  working at  two y e a r  know o t h e r  be s e l e c t e d  supported Sarkar  The d e c i s i o n was not  the v i l l a g e ,  He c o u l d not a t t e n d in C o l i p u r .  the  BNP b e c a u s e he had a l w a y s  member b e c a u s e he was a good w o r k e r . Mansur  in  his  the  job.  p e r i o d of  members, but  from  wise.  felt  that  government  s e c u r e c o o p e r a t i o n b a s e d on s i m i l a r  Gram  party  outlooks  and  interests. Maksud attended  Ali  Khalifa  school  for  village  activities  without  his  Sarkar  accidentally  Parishad  of  the  office  at  the  t o have  in the  because  the  time  its  member  village,  some o t h e r  member.  His  the  and  had  passive Gram  from t h e  t o have  without  to  visit  purpose. of  in  Sarkar  the  Gram Union  Khalifa  had  Gram S a r k a r ,  i n c l u s i o n appears  and  t o be an  south-eastern  border  a d i s i n t e r e s t e d member who  t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  c o u l d be e l i m i n a t e d  of  happened  and o p e r a t i o n  as w e l l as  old  He a t t e n d e d a m e e t i n g of  he  a representative  years  He was e x t r e m e l y  2 0  a  for  objectives  w o u l d not c h a l l e n g e Sarkar  a few y e a r s .  and was made  done n o t h i n g as  attempt  sixty-five  knowledge or c o n s e n t .  no i d e a about had  was  Khalifa  fear  of  felt  adverse  that  Gram  consequences  village.  Jobeda understand  Khatun, most  t h e Gram S a r k a r schooling,  of  a  is  year  the q u e s t i o n s  because  which  fifty  she was a  rare  I  old asked.  female  in C o l i p u r .  2 1  She  housewife, She was with  five  did  not  selected  to  years  of  seemed t o t h i n k  that  1 63  the  only  the  p u r p o s e of  expansion  housewife was of  of  local  government  mass  literacy.  aged t w e n t y - f i v e ,  about  local  .  2  She a t t e n d e d  2  reading  and  had  Begum,  level  industries  of  was  another  education  and  i n C o l i p u r on b e h a l f  some m e e t i n g s ,  p r o b l e m s on t h o s e o c c a s i o n s .  i n t h e Gram P r a d h a n , without  Anowara  had a s i m i l a r  expected to develop c o t t a g e Gram S a r k a r  r e f o r m s and Gram S a r k a r  d i d not  speak  She had c o m p l e t e  faith  initialled  but  papers  sent  by  him  them.  AN OVERVIEW Gram S a r k a r  was  constituted  r e c o r d s were m a i n t a i n e d , accomplishments intentions  Not o n l y  did  not c a r e nor of  turned  to  point  out  village,  in  the  the  its Gram  two y e a r s the  no any  or even  and  these  about  the  of  existence  went t o a t the  to  members  meetings.  The  t i m e and p l a c e  of  of  in  leaders  one  meeting  s a i d they  Yet  i n t i m e s of  traditional  Gram S a r k a r  least  residents  t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  Gram P r a d h a n the  Since  consequences.  s a i d they  knew o n l y  1980.  but most o f  to  f i n d out  About h a l f  t h e members or t h e people  invited  were aware o f  body.  t h e members, a few  to  their  Many v i l l a g e r s  the v i l l a g e  the  the v i l l a g e r s ,  i n f o r m e d a b o u t and  The v i l l a g e r s  the  A c c o r d i n g to  in  from one  these meetings,  go t o  institution  to  number of m e e t i n g s v a r i e d  week.  of  difficult  members  one e v e r y  villagers  is  in  the  the  Colipur.  the  and p l a n s .  Pradhan,  were not  of  it  in C o l i p u r  they  need.  knew  did Most  and t h e  not of  Union  164  Parishad the  members.  Gram P r a d h a n  complained that the  since  institution not c i t e failed  they  the  the  completely  of  the  resident,  and was  demonstrated funds  following direct local  presence  short  in  the  influence villagers  of  span o f  the  village,  the  had  but  officials  exerted  with overlapping  or  less  the  jurisdictions,  role  local  the  their  further lack  of  of  duties  through The  same t y p e  would o n l y  they  undermined  the  c o n f i d e n c e of  the  by t h e Gram S a r k a r  i n c l u d i n g two  rival of  if  Nevertheless,  Gram S a r k a r two  the  leaders  projects  officials.  that  more  had no  for  Parishad  continuation  its  to  government  funds  Due t o  had  large  region.  had  He  a  the  Gram S a r k a r  the  permanent  acquired  in  government  suggested  was a  to  and an a b i l i t y  The c e n t r a l  villagers  performing  have  members of  villagers.  government He  activities.  leaders.  The  in the  to  contributed  , many of my i n f o r m a n t s among t h e  2 3  seems  Chairman  among  and n o n - p e r f o r m a n c e of  eliminated.  no change  Even t h e members c o u l d  had  The  c o u l d secure  members,  approached  C h a i r m a n and t h r e e  village  with  w i t h the  its  villagers  they  Gram S a r k a r  projects.  and p u b l i c  links life  the  known  local  union l e v e l  close  of  the  links  with these  leaders  the  in  well  for  Two  and most t h o u g h t  run.  achievements.  Gram S a r k a r .  his  leaders,  Colipur.  Union P a r i s h a d  secure  of Gram S a r k a r ,  dominant p r e s e n c e  weakness  the  in  h e l p when  these  p e o p l e had w i t n e s s e d  being properly  of  with  consulted.  receive  local  creation  was not  connections  sometimes  d i d not The  instances  The  had  was  Gram S a r k a r .  Colipur  at  Due t o h i s  should  be  institutions  functions, result  Union  in  sometimes  conflicts.  1 65  They p r e f e r r e d Parishad  over  the the  Factional defined. led  In  factions  The  of  the p a s t , and t h e  alignments. from t h e i r new  of  the  the  were  two  sections  of  new  leading  government  the  factions of  the  of  interest  disinterested consent.  of  of  the  without  villagers  intention  of  Parishad  two  were i n c a p a b l e system.  They  the  previous challenges  accepted  the  dominating  strength  of  developing  an  in  local  years  selecting  their  them.  the  Totally  knowledge  of  An o f f i c e  and  the  these  government  not  not  be  existence.  Gram given  set  up  The U n i o n The members  p o s i t i o n and r o l e s were not  the  d e m o n s t r a t e d no  occasional gatherings.  complained that or  were  could  Gram S a r k a r ' s  comprehending t h e i r  by t h e Gram P r a d h a n  They  or  of members,  The l a n d l e s s  and t h e Gram P r a d h a n  was u s e d f o r of  affairs.  C h a i r m a n made up a l i s t  o r g a n i z i n g them.  office  of  and  in C o l i p u r demonstrated  c o n s u l t i n g t h e members.  responsibilities,  the  all  strong  had  other.  i n c l u d e d , and d e c i s i o n s were made by t h e  specific  during  in  Unequal  p e o p l e were i n c l u d e d w i t h o u t  f i s h e r m e n were n o t Pradhan  family  Sarkars,  had  prospect  clearly  the  had s u c c e e d e d i n  the v i l l a g e r s  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d  instead  Union  leaders.  The c o m p o s i t i o n of Gram S a r k a r lack  facing  in C o l i p u r .  hindered  Bhuiya  the  villagers  faction  institutions had  the  longer  t o one or  change  were not  Most of  The s t r o n g e r  a  no  the  family,  to  new l e a d e r s  opponents.  set  were l o y a l  successful  .  Colipur  villagers a  The  local  somewhat  in  B h u i y a s had l e d  leaders.  alternate  and  u n s u c c e s s f u l Gram S a r k a r  groupings  emergence  decline  experienced  in  the  explained to  them  officials.  Most  of  the  166  members by t h e  expressed government  It  is  both  join the  some Gram S a r k a r  t h e new l e a d e r s  to  in the  a c q u i r e more power interested  or a c t i v e  to e x e r c i s e c o n t r o l over Gram S a r k a r  out.  or  No  maintained. of  attempt  It  of  is  meeting  the v i l l a g e  in  at  All  literacy  the  the  probably  easy  for  them  members  Gram Pradhan  institution.  d i d n o t h i n g t o make t h e affairs.  the  for  r e w a r d was  helped  Meetings  villagers  t h e Gram S a r k a r  objectives  allowed  and t h i s  The  that  and  leader appeared  O t h e r Gram S a r k a r  local  of  Their  They  future.  new  clear  adult  discontinued. a  members i n C o l i p u r were  w h i c h would make i t  Colipur  records  the at  the  publicized.  The o f f i c e  Pradhan.  any  in  participants  announced  of  t o d o m i n a t e Gram S a r k a r . leaders  useful  instructed  by t h e O n i o n P a r i s h a d C h a i r m a n who was a  r e c o g n i t i o n as v i l l a g e  were n o t  t o be g u i d e d and  b u s i n e s s m e n and t h e a g r i c u l t u r i s t s .  keen t o p l e a s e Gram P r a d h a n  preference  officials.  obvious that  induced to of  their  organization's  which  by  to  the  not  were  accomplish  was c r e a t e d .  The o n l y be  t h e members c o u l d n o t be b r o u g h t t o g e t h e r  for  p o r t f o l i o s and t a s k s  and  find Gram  activities  could  half-hearted  not  to  which  was  it  were  d i d not c a r e  was d o m i n a t e d  Gram S a r k a r  villagers  c o u l d be  had  distributed  among them. The c h a n c e s of a r e v i v a l decreased in C o l i p u r . attempt to  the  dominant  of  interest  The v i l l a g e  t o e x p l a i n the o b j e c t i v e s villagers positions  by  the of  the  leaders  in  local affairs  have  s u f f e r e d because t h e r e  was no  and s t r a t e g i e s  Sarkar  and  the  Union P a r i s h a d  of  Gram  government. Chairman  The  and Gram  167  Pradhan  nullified  the  basic  a body r e p r e s e n t a t i v e participation in  while  were o v e r l o o k e d . its  elections.  the  Gram S a r k a r 1981.  The  their  village  sought  only  villagers  through  for  base  lost  by  villagers  creating  and  government within  leading but  required to their new of  family  the  has  helped  advantageous  power.  idea  about  a  whole  duties  and  at  educating  to The  the  union  changes,  projects. since to  lead  responsibilities.  the  be the  roles  and  run  local  conflict  development  the  small  by a d o m i n a n t p e r s o n a l i t y their  c o u l d not  their  lacked  the  villagers  of  new  preparation level  in C o l i p u r proved i t s e l f  even  e q u i p p e d t o b r i n g a b o u t major arbitrarily  the  of  realized  developing  without  the  end  i n C o l i p u r t o assume c o n t r o l  Gram S a r k a r  p l a n n i n g and e x e c u t i n g  leaders  of  of  BNP.  the  been c o m p l e t e d .  Leaders  position  by  preparing Colipur  not  as  AL,  government  aware  had  village  receive  institution.  Local  The p r o c e s s of  s u p p o r t e d the  in  efforts  institution  them  institutions  the  leaders,  an  .  the  and t h e  faith  and  in  Colipur  interest,  cooperative  making  responsibilities.  in  Both groups l o s t the  candidates  c o u l d be u s e d by t h e  operate  interest  t h e Gram S a r k a r  traditionally  of  selected  and showed  party's  be  The l e v e l  members were  utilize the  that  c o o r d i n a t e d by t h e Gram S a r k a r reformed  to  which  ceased to  helplessness.  after  t h o s e who were p r e s e n t  Colipur,  w h i c h was t o  g r o u p s and i n t e r e s t s .  members t o work  was  Gram S a r k a r ,  especially  The BNP  In  Gram S a r k a r  all  became l o w ,  absentia,  instructed  of  aim of  It  used of  the  incapable was  people  the v i l l a g e  not  selected had no  168  NOTES 1  Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, Bangladesh D i s t r i c t Gazetteers C o m i l l a (Dacca: S u p e r i n t e n d e n t , B a n g l a d e s h Government P r e s s , 1 9 7 7 ) , p. 41.  2  Preliminary report on the c e n s u s of B i c h i t r a , J u l y 3, 1981, p. 16.  3  The w e e k l y  4  Government of t h e P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of B a n g l a d e s h , Village P o p u l a t i o n S t a t i s t i c s , C o m i l l a Sadar ( N o r t h ) S u b d i v i s i o n ( D a c c a : B a n g l a d e s h Government P r e s s , 1 9 7 7 ) .  5  A title Nawabs i n  6  Government of t h e P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c P o p u l a t i o n S t a t i s t i c s , 1977.  7  A s e p a r a t e room u s u a l l y l o c a t e d i n f r o n t of t h e h o m e s t e a d . Male visitors are seated and t h e head of t h e h o u s e h o l d meets o t h e r v i l l a g e r s i n t h e " b a i t h a k - k h a n a " . Other terms a r e used i n some o t h e r d i s t r i c t s .  8  A title conferred on, amounts of l a n d . In t h i s assumed by a f a m i l y .  9  "Sarkar B a r i " means t h e " h o u s e of t h e S a r k a r s " . Sarkar is a t i t l e c o n f e r r e d o n , o r assumed b y , people who maintain accounts for others.  10  The term was used to describe people who sat Matriculation final examinations after ten years schooling, but failed. Taher Hossain Sarkar i n t e r v i e w e d a t t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d o f f i c e i n C o l i p u r on 2, 1982.  11  A committee set up t o h e l p t h e l i b e r a t i o n war i n 1971. Such b o d i e s e x i s t e d i n a l m o s t e v e r y v i l l a g e of B a n g l a d e s h .  12  B a z l u r Rahman was High S c h o o l .  13  Alfu Mia Elliotganj  14  " M a j h i " means a p e r s o n who rows a b o a t . of t h i s member's f a m i l y i s a g r i c u l t u r e . was i n t e r v i e w e d on May 10, 1982.  15  Sabdar  Ali  Bichitra,  July  3,  1981, p.  1981, i n the 16.  conferred on p e o p l e of w e a l t h . the d i s t r i c t at the t i m e .  interviewed  was  T h e r e were a  Bangladesh,  or assumed by, case, it seems  was interviewed bazar.  Sarkar  of  on May 4, on May 9,  interviewed  weekly  Village  owners of to have  1982 a t  few  large been  for of was May  Elliotganj  1982 i n h i s  store  in  But t h e o c c u p a t i o n Abdul Majid Majhi  on A p r i l  22,  1982.  169  16  Chand M i a was  interviewed  17  "Bepari" is a t i t l e i n t e r v i e w e d on A p r i l  18  J o y n a l Hoq was  26,  19  Mansur Ahmad was 1 982.  20  "Khalifa" means a tailor. Maksud A l i K h a l i f a s t i l l does some t a i l o r i n g , but t h e major p o r t i o n of h i s e a r n i n g s comes from t h e l a n d he owns. He was i n t e r v i e w e d on May 6, 1982.  21  J o b e d a K h a t u n was i n t e r v i e w e d on A p r i l 2 6 , 1982. Her and a n e i g h b o u r h e l p e d her i n a n s w e r i n g q u e s t i o n s .  22  Anowara  23  Two Union Parishad members, Mohammad J a m a l Mia and E z a z u d d i n were i n t e r v i e w e d on A p r i l 23 and 2 4 , 1982. Both claimed that were automatically s e l e c t e d a s Gram S a r k a r members due t o t h e i r Union P a r i s h a d membership. It was later found t h a t t h e y were n o t Gram S a r k a r members. Even t h e v i l l a g e r s d i d not know t h a t t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d members were t o be e x c l u d e d from Gram S a r k a r m e m b e r s h i p .  u s e d by t r a d e r s . 2 3 , 1982.  interviewed  Begum was  on A p r i l  on A p r i l  interviewed  interviewed  30,  1982. Kadam A l i  was  July  25,  1982.  i n C o m i l l a town  on A p r i l  Bepari  29,  on  son  1982.  170  VII.  FACTIONALISM AND VILLAGE RAINAGAR,  The  village  of  implementing changes considerable  as  of  leaders  created  government. Gram S a r k a r .  the  of  in  government.  A  has  facilitated  the  its  preparedness  to  institutions.  install  supporters rival  the  local  way  of  reforms  affected  preparation  in  t h e p e r f o r m a n c e of  accomplishments  i m p o r t a n c e of  its  But  o p p o s i t i o n from a s t r o n g e r  factionalism the  to  for  local  government  government  obstacles  However,  demonstrate  t o be w e l l - p r e p a r e d  influence  new l o c a l  and s t i f f  Strong  seemed  and c o n t r i b u t e d t o  operate  IN  RAJSHAHI  system  urban  by t h e c e n t r a l  village  faction  the  of R a i n a g a r  and  the attempt  in  degree  mobilization establish  Rainagar  LEADERSHIP: GRAM SARKAR  of  for  Gram  local  Sarkar  government  r e f o r m s t o be s u c c e s s f u l . The d i s t r i c t r e g i o n of  Bangladesh  the B r i t i s h of  the  major  of  East  Raja  change  the d i s t r i c t  of  Rajshahi  is  .  to the  India  Prior  situated  The B r i t i s h  in the a d m i n i s t r a t i v e underwent  changes over  1  years  administration  in  reorganization  took p l a c e  when I n d i a  1947.  the  district  the  any  The b o u n d a r i e s of as  the  subcontinent. was  by  estate  d i d not b r i n g a b o u t  machinery. the  of  north-western  formed a p r i v a t e  reorganized  later  the  takeover  Company, R a j s h a h i  Natore.  in  British 2  partitioned  More in  MAP *f.  RAJSHAHI DISTRICT  171  THE VILLAGE Rajshahi is  District  an a r e a  i n h a b i t e d by 5 , 2 6 3 , 0 0 0 p e o p l e .  live  in  a  Rajshahi  is  79  cent  per  agriculture wheat a r e in  the  square  essentially of  for  and  of  1,495  is  livelihood.  educational  thirty-five  per  Rainagar and b e c a u s e o f  one  lies  jute,  more  than  dependent  sugar  Rainagar  the d i s t r i c t  large  village  cane is  on and  situated  under Paba  police  3042,  of  c o v e r i n g an a r e a which  557 h o u s e h o l d s 1976.  are  its  just  the  There in  r a t e of  is  1,547 a r e  and  the  in  rate  its  literacy  and  of  males  one government  Rainagar,  located  various  types  livelihood  here.  service  outside  proximity  Rainagar,  vicinity  and  of free  other  vicinity.  The  now s t a n d s  near  cent.  inhabits  including  persons  l a n d per p e r s o n . "  directly  Rice,  madrasa  claim that  characteristics.  demand f o r  in  institutions  leaders  1,754  and  subdivision.  cent  and  of  The v i l l a g e of  There are  13 p e r  school  village  part  square m i l e s  district  are  5  w i t h a p o p u l a t i o n of  was  primary  0.36 a c r e  population  crops.  3,652  average,  an a g r i c u l t u r a l  Sadar  6  of  On  3  with  a relatively  females.  literacy  that  their  Rajshahi  acres  urban  its  the p r i n c i p a l  Rainagar 3078  mile,  south-western  station  of  covers  in  to  Due t o of  t h e b o u n d a r y of the  the  Instead, the  sandy  services  agriculture a  town,  has  soil  by t h e is  not  town,  acquired  many  c o n d i t i o n and  the  s e m i - u r b a n community the  number of  educational  Rajshahi  principal other  means  occupations  institutions  in  the  and b u s i n e s s have become p r o m i n e n t .  Rainagar  is  located  about  three  miles  east  of  Rajshahi  172  town,  on t h e  in the  highway  south.  L i k e most  residential  area  town and i n  local  University  of  in  1958,  Rainagar.  small  the  to  residents,  employment contractors  who  buildings  these  Thus,  for  Rainagar  various  the  a few m i l e s from  cultivation  principal  the  in  and  acre  of  and t h e  the  is  yield  station,  About  25  villages  The  much h i g h e r ,  these  to  the  institutions to  find  number  of  of  the of  across  new  area.  people  of  College, Medical  College,  j u t e and s u g a r m i l l s is  that  land,  of  Sugar  the  cane, is  Rainagar  Bangladesh.  periodically  cent  jute,  by  opportunity A  of  highway  of  productivity  24 maunds and f o r  1964  the  agricultural  per  in  construction  situated  and two  done on l a n d t h a t  College  only  residence  The c o n s e q u e n c e  a s an o c c u p a t i o n .  is  is  the  interests.  Engineering  of  not  were a t t r a c t e d  became  Rajshahi  the  the  composition  colleges.  supervising  mostly  crops.  social  in of  Medical  College  had t h e  cheap  who work  Rajshahi  by e m p l o y e e s of  Padma  a  establishment  the  University  most o t h e r  is  Padma.  agriculture  per  the  also  away.  not composed  river  The  river  provides  Engineering  institutions  the  inhabitants  villagers  broadcasting  different is  its  1954-55,  also  gradually  village,  radio  only  Rainagar  p r o f e s s i o n s with d i f f e r e n t  the  up t o  began t o be i n h a b i t e d  were  The U n i v e r s i t y from  in  but  the  extends  industries.  changes  The  in  of  Rajshahi  some  students.  It  suburbs, those  The v i l l a g e  permanent and  for  Rajshahi  and  contributed  to Dhaka.  15 maunds.  looks village  although emerges  some  from  villagers  rice  low;  The  For  the  pursue  and j u t e a r e  the y i e l d  are  for  sugar  r a n g i n g a r o u n d 800 maunds p e r  the rice  cane, acre.  7  1 73  Approximately industries both  15 p e r  which  About Rajshahi  bazaars  town.  institutions  handicapped,  elderly  of  the  remaining one  substantial situated  a  Post  Rupali  and A g r a n i  value  has  in  Office  the  employed i n  the  village.  The  including  the  are  20.  85  per  Muslims,  and  the  mosques  and  three  groups.  village.  There  gone up c o n s i d e r a b l y  over  try  b r a n c h e s of  the  villagers. the p a s t  to acquire  are  Electricity  have been p r o v i d e d t o  and t h r e e  the v i c i n i t y  in  the  There are  the  in  work  approximately  religious  however,  Banks  is  serving  people working  of  Rajshahi  Rainagar  to  Rainagar  two  of  unemployables  Hindus.  roads  connections,  is  small  Products  marketed at  s e c t i o n are  close  and  of  are  these  There  are  residents  and c h i l d r e n  or c o n c r e t e  telephone  the  population  for  employed i n  bamboowork.  industries  non-workers  15 p e r c e n t  temple  metalled  of  Another  of  and  is  in the n e i g h b o u r h o o d .  cent  percentage  cent  the p o p u l a t i o n  and s m a l l  30 p e r  educational  of  i n c l u d e weaving  agriculture  town and o t h e r  cent  no and  Rainagar. Sonali,  Real  the  estate  t e n y e a r s as more property  in  the  village. The advantage  permanent of  residents  the developments near  and u n i v e r s i t y  jobs,  and  providing available  by  the  thus these after  Rainagar the  started  village.  b u i l d i n g s were b e i n g c o n s t r u c t e d ,  employment o p p o r t u n i t i e s appointed  of  for  local  the  local  benefits the  first  contractors to  the  phase of  for  colleges  they  provided  the  gained  villagers. construction  take  As t h e  u n s k i l l e d workers.  p e o p l e who had c o n t r a c t s  to  They were  construction influence  More was  jobs  by were  completed,  174  and  the  institutions  started  operating.  The  exercised their  c o n n e c t i o n s and i n f l u e n c e  at  to  jobs  They were a l s o a b l e  distribute  patronise  small  t h e p r e m i s e s of The most Rahman,  a  supporter  to  these  successful  among  of  when he a t t e n d e d  of  contractors  college  and l o c a l  j o b s and s e t t i n g  initiatives  in  solving  been  relatives face  i n Rairtagar  any  Fazlur  the  Rahman e a s i l y  the  within Shamla  defeated  in Rajshahi.  in  independence  Union P a r i s h a d Fazlur the  of  until  him.  the  Union  officials  village.  His  threat  to  government  the of  He was a  (NAP-M)  help  from  support from him to  his  Rahman  soon  family  has  he  did  not  when he c o n t e s t e d  Council  the c a n d i d a t e s  in  the  from o t h e r  several  years,  for  1960s. villages and  after  c o n t i n u e d as C h a i r m a n o f  the  1977. to maintain  b e c a u s e he was w e a l t h y ,  government  His  Therefore,  village  Bangladesh,  Rahman was a b l e  village  on  He has a good number of  and r e m a i n e d U n i o n C o u n c i l C h a i r m a n f o r the  to  Fazlur  and t h a n k s  Fazlur  Rainagar.  village.  was  With the  stores,  problems,  who f o l l o w  competition  t h e C h a i r m a n s h i p of  up s t o r e s  forties.  [pro-Moscow]  up s m a l l  local  in  late  p e o p l e who r e c e i v e d  as a l e a d e r  prominent  contractors  in h i s  Awami P a r t y  in a c q u i r i n g  always  these  Rainagar  the N a t i o n a l  established himself  who s e t  institutions  institutions.  the days other  followers.  b u s i n e s s e s by t h e v i l l a g e r s  resident of  their  these  contractors  as  well  allegiance Awami  to  League  Bangladesh.  as  The  communities  NAP-M  (AL)  leading position  and had c l o s e c o n t a c t s  the  the  his  with the  was n o t c o n s i d e r e d a  which  NAP-M  around  in  formed  supported  the most of  first the  1 75  policies  pursued  necessary  to  by  the  develop  AL.  alternate  l o o k e d upon t h e NAP-M as an Gradually, of  a  small  to  people  Rainagar  town. from  composition literacy.  the  the  enterprises  were b e i n g t a k e n  over  private  opportunities As a r e s u l t ,  the v i l l a g e However,  political  d i d not  less  prominence, Fazlur  followed  by  to  convenient Gram S a r k a r  Rahman.  the  and  council the  w i t h the  the  become  Bangladesh  Nationalist  ruling p o l i t i c a l opposition  him  to  party,  it  were  The f a l l of  and s e r v i c e s  in  with  business  They  were  existed  outside  for maintaining  control  able  who a s p i r e d  to  for  these  party  people.  The  new p o l i t i c a l  members  to  to  lure  (BNP). people  leader  of  into  by  Ziaur  put  Rainagar,  of  was made  establishing of  the  his  new Once  choice,  working  With the could  1975  the v i l l a g e r s .  p i c k members of them  in  scope  party  i n t e n d e d scheme of and o t h e r  to  successfully  t h e AL government  a new p o l i t i c a l  able  the dominant  that  i n a m e e t i n g of  these  the  t h e r e was a r i s e  villagers.  not of  through the  Party  out  acute.  government's  was  for  as  characteristics  educated v i l l a g e r s  but  were t o be s e l e c t e d  would be e a s y  the area  it  indicated,  important,  competition  The Gram P r a d h a n  Gram P r a d h a n  and  resources  formation  prominence  .  the  As  up by more  Rahman p r o v i d e d an o p p o r t u n i t y rising  for  consider  o r g a n i z a t i o n s and i n d e p e n d e n t  t h e r e were o t h e r  challenge  acquiring  changed  became  and  Rainagar.  not  leadership  village.  village  Agriculture  of  did  Houses were b e i n g c o n s t r u c t e d and r e n t e d  government  aware  AL  ally.  started  outside  of  The  for  b a c k i n g of up Fazlur  a  it the the  strong Rahman.  176  Some of  the v i l l a g e r s  campaigned  hard  which F a z l u r resident  of  One Master  these  independence  regime, He was  of  of  Ali  the  Ansar  f i n e d and j a i l e d  worked  as  Rajshahi  the  for  a  Principal couple  for  of  but  Rajshahi, All  to  secure  Rainagar Rahman Ansar party, 1980,  in had  lost  some  Ali  He  as a S e c t i o n  BNP.  By  of  in  Islam,  holder  of  Before in  a  he  the  active  became  end  two  Dhaneswar  A n s a r was an  the  the  After  of  was  the  the AL  past the  the  new  he  i n Ratanpur  in  again  accused  He m a n i p u l a t e d  Officer  in  kept  in  Finding  BNP.  with  it  regime  and  t o be  Ali  political  was e s t a b l i s h e d  t o win enough f o l l o w e r s  to  Fazlur  the A L .  its  the  difficult  he r e t u r n e d  of  an  University  Meanwhile, fall  of  illegal.  touch  record,  w i t h the  the  declared  t i m e Gram S a r k a r  Rainagar.  release,  fired.  frequently. his  his  college  later  Ansar  joined  for  A n s a r was a b l e  a s t h e Gram P r a d h a n  Ali  influence  expressed support the  another  f u n d s and was  with  1979-80, and  At  conviction.  Rainagar  employment  Ali  independence,  years.  career,  and v i s i t e d  Ansar,  was a l e c t u r e r  t h e a p p o i n t m e n t was  through h i s  villagers  he  of  of  himself  Mansur  1977  j o b and was c h a r g e d w i t h c o r r u p t i o n .  after  misappropriating college appointment  ,  After  his  to  Rahman  of  and P s y c h o l o g y .  in K a l a k h a l i .  lost  elections  Ali  from R a i n a g a r .  AL.  a college  was  Science  Bangladesh  Fazlur  .  challengers  20 m i l e s  of  Principal  village  in P o l i t i c a l  about  supporter  the C h a i r m a n s h i p  an a d j a c e n t  degrees  to challenge  d u r i n g the Union P a r i s h a d  Rahman l o s t  of  College,  who were e a g e r  in  installed  177  TRADITION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT In  the  pre-Mughal p e r i o d ,  had t o c o l l e c t amount the  as  o n e - s i x t h of  rent  district  to  in  the  the  1765.  The the  In  were  three  headquarters  of  first  Rampur-Boalia,  pounds,  supply  areas.  But  the  Local  Boards  Rainagar Boalia of  was  established  Rajshahi.  the  in  This  adjacent 1876.  to  It  1 0  arrangement  in  Rajshahi  but  c h a n g e s were made i n t h e  at  were the  subdivisional 9  These  bodies  and  water  education remained in  the  became  continued  isolated urban  local  the until  became a d i s t r i c t  of  of  instituted.  the M u n i c i p a l i t y  later  Pakistan no  1947.  offices  the  administrative  and N a o g a o n .  villages  w h i c h had t h e i r  located  Boards  primary  area  assumed c o n t r o l  local  Boards  Natore  roads,  rural  Local  the  p r o d u c e and pay  The B r i t i s h  Local  managed v i l l a g e in  8  traditional  until  there  headman i n  agricultural  Zamindar.  system c o n t i n u e d , 1916,  the v i l l a g e  areas.  of  Rampur-  Municipality the  East  government  from  birth  of  Pakistan,  system in  the  villages. When B a s i c Rainagar the  was  fell  and  under  Rajshahi  the  still  p o p u l a t i o n was  services  in  Democracy  1976.  a village  increasing,  a clear  Shamla  union,  as  put  into  was  outside  and  implemented  developmental  projects.  Chairman  the  and  a  The l e a d e r s  members,  provided  few of  of  1959,  work. the  But  for The  more  village  boundary  u n i o n had a p o p u l a t i o n of  The U n i o n C o u n c i l assumed c h a r g e  villages,  in  institutions.  were demands  developmental  it  Shamla  operation  w i t h no l o c a l and t h e r e  need f o r  Municipality. 1 1  was  17,612  administration agricultural  to  in and  the Union C o u n c i l , leadership  of  its  their  1 78  respective local and not  villages  projects, the  in  government  officials  immensely  accomplished  disputes,  and i n m a i n t a i n i n g  government  benefit  settling  in  in  from t h e s e  the v i l l a g e  links the  arranging  between  i n the  the  urban a r e a s .  activities,  for  villagers  Rainagar  and v e r y  following  funds  did  little  y e a r s by t h e  was local  institutions.  SWANIRVAR GRAM SARKAR Gram S a r k a r the presence  of  same m e e t i n g , and  the  about  instituted  villagers  eleven  entrusted  details  was  specific  formation  Rainagar  are  of  Gram P r a d h a n ,  the  Ali  on c h a r g e s o f BNP  Pradhan failure  in  and  o f Gram S a r k a r  villagers,  his in  the  contacts  He a t t e n d e d  its some  of  Many  the  Gram S a r k a r  in  at  the  i n May,  1982.  Ali  possible  to  v i e w s on t h e  Ansar  took  the  of  were k e p t  the m i l i t a r y  in  members  under d e t e n t i o n was  over  house when  I  arrested  power  from  the  Gram  interview  o p e r a t i o n and s u c c e s s  or  Rainagar. of  his  colleagues  account  of  A n s a r was a s u p p o r t e r  with  as Gram S a r k a r  He was  following Ali  At  Ansar.  not  statements  reconstructed.  levels.  was  analyze  From t h e  close  It  1980,  officials.  operation  The r e c o r d s  corruption after  1982.  in June,  responsibilities.  and  not a c c e s s i b l e .  c o n d u c t e d my i n v e s t i g a t i o n  the  and government  p e o p l e were s e l e c t e d  with the  in Rainagar  leaders meetings  at  the and  and  of  Gram S a r k a r of  the  district  BNP and  conferences  Rainagar can and  be had  national as  Gram  179  Pradhan  at  the  capital,  Dhaka.  Most of  c o n s i d e r e d him t o be a good l e a d e r with  local  March,  1982, A l i  scheduled the  problems.  rest  the  Gram P r a d h a n so t h a t  A n s a r was  amount of  However,  of  relief  basis  for  of  in Rainagar.  relief.  villagers,  will  views,  their  endeavouring  to  duties  solve  than  said  selling the  individual  1 2  members  form  s u c c e s s or of  the  and o p e r a t i o n  along with those  as members  in the  that  to each  nature  be u s e d i n a s s e s s i n g t h e  p e r f o r m a n c e of  dealing  p o o r and t h e n  Gram S a r k a r  Their  less  followers  u n d e r s t a n d i n g the  the c o u n c i l  unit  the  of  members  was d e c l a r e d  giving  the v i l l a g e His  Law  t h e amount t o be g i v e n  The r e c o l l e c t i o n s  the  of  more p e o p l e c o u l d be awarded  principal  capable  when M a r t i a l  materials.  reduced  who was  accused  wheat t o  the Gram S a r k a r  a  of  of the  failure  in  village-based  problems through l o c a l  planning  and  projects. Mohammad R a s h i d u l Sarkar  in Rainagar.  graduate, Mills,  cultivable  specific He time  He was  s e l e c t e d Member-Secretary  a  thirty-four  year  and worked a s an A c c o u n t s A s s i s t a n t  a few m i l e s  Sarkar  Hoq was  land.  Committee  from  the  village.  was  being  formed,  of and  Gram S a r k a r  because  i n community a c t i v i t i e s .  own  t h e BNP when t h e  Gram  c o u l d not  Member-Secretary  was  to  help  the  m e e t i n g s w h i c h were h e l d t w i c e e v e r y Rashidul  of  the  he wanted t o u t i l i z e  The  c o n s i d e r e d Gram S a r k a r  main  Sugar  not  r e a s o n as t o why he became a s u p p o r t e r  joined  did  Gram  commerce  in Rajshahi  Rashidul  He became a s u p p o r t e r  old  of  task  of  Gram P r a d h a n  state  party. his  1 3  spare  Rashidul in  any  as  arranging  week. t o be e x t r e m e l y  useful,  and  180  p o i n t e d out success.  improvements of He f o u n d v e r y  pisciculture. the  Gram S a r k a r  that  officials  Rainagar.  It  Secretary that  its  Naresh Sarkar and  a  that  d i d not  Chandra  nine,  and  him.  delegate  was  the  store  in Rajshahi  participated  of  k i n d and r e f u s e d t o  could  Gram S a r k a r  members,  irrelevant  at  and f o r e s t r y  local  in  inclinations  he  this  not  and  club.  detect  thought  level.  development  Sarkar  member was t o d i s t r i b u t e  government  for  t h e government  a  Higher  clerk  Secondary  said in  Sarkar,  people  c o u l d not  cultivation  the U n i v e r s i t y Certificate  of  year  old  in  accomplish  was  cultural  denied  political  politics. or  in charge  materials land,  among was  agriculture  that  his  job  as  by  the  complained  that  irregular.  years  Rajshahi.  examination.  of  provided  but  and  rivalry  He  partisanship  He s t a t e d  of  businessman,  and  discuss  political  Gram  He had r e a d up t o  any t e n s i o n  s u p p l i e s were i n a d e q u a t e  in  with  who  t h e Gram  social  Mohammad K a m r u l Alam was t h i r t y - f i v e as  of  complained  influential  Sarkar  in Rainagar.  Gram S a r k a r  better  to  1  a  that  Rashidul  town. "  with  stated  contacts  o n l y H i n d u member of  activities  any  field  s e l e c t e d a Member-  power  He was a f o r t y - t h r e e  had  its  Rainagar.  Sarkar  jewelry  of  Gram S a r k a r  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  was c o n t r o l l e d by  in  no  with  r e a s o n , Gram S a r k a r  objectives  example  q u o t e d t h e Gram P r a d h a n  d e p e n d e n t on  this  in Rainagar.  ran  class  cooperating  appears  For  he had  had  institution  village.  most o f  admitted that  been  an  was a c c o m p l i s h e d i n t h e  but  government the  little  r o a d s as  officials,  who was v e r y  the  and t h u s the  Rashidul  local  1 5  o l d , and  worked  He had p a s s e d Previously,  the Alam  181  supported  the  supporter  of  programme. claimed  Ziaur  that of  thirds  the  of  the  time  his  in  for  in  development.  He d i d not  in  reducing  the  About  that  he was  two-  it  Yet,  He  was  represented  the  he r e s i g n e d f r o m  his  preoccupations  time  to  in  selected  and e d u c a t e d man.  have t h e  He  m e e t i n g s were u s e d  and t h o u g h t  2 1 , 1981 b e c a u s e of  and j o b .  in Rainagar.  the v i l l a g e .  two w e e k l y  strong  Nineteen-Point  and o r d e r  wanted an h o n e s t  local  on November  law  He was a  BNP's  Alam t h o u g h t  a b o u t Gram S a r k a r  strategy  1980.  been s u c c e s s f u l  the  disputes.  villagers  family  of  had  in  the  and v i o l e n c e  spent  local  BNP  and  in charge  quarrels  enthusiastic  council  Rahman  Gram S a r k a r  adjudicating because  He j o i n e d t h e  Alam was  incidence  best  AL.  spare  the with  for  Gram  Sarkar. Mohammad N a s i r graduate.  a furniture  liberation  Chairman  of  left  the  was  formed.  improve  was  He worked at  operated the  Ali  war  the  party  thirty-four  Rajshahi  store.  in  local  y e a r s o l d and a commerce  Jute M i l l s  Nasir  and a l s o  was a f r e e d o m f i g h t e r  1971,  supported  the  Relief  Committee a f t e r  after  1975, and t o o k a l i k i n g  Nasir  joined  conditions  in  t h e Gram S a r k a r  the  responsibility  of  cooperative  banks  in Rainagar.  government  was  village.  organizing  supposed  to  AL,  to the  He r e g r e t t e d  to  and  the  fact  that  training  of  Sarkar  that  body had o n l y  it  cooperatives the  the  He  the  Nasir  the  1 6  given  materialized. and s a i d  the  BNP when  was  activities,  most  was  b e c a u s e he wanted  He  for  and  during  independence.  village  arrange  and  S a r k a r members t o o r g a n i z e c o o p e r a t i v e attended  owned  but  in  Gram  nothing  meetings  succeeded  of  the  of  Gram  improving  1 82  roads  in  proper  i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of programmes, Gram S a r k a r  able  to  view, it  the  village.  s o l v e most of  only  if  He b e l i e v e d  that  with adequate  and e d u c a t e d v i l l a g e r s  and  w o u l d have  the problems in R a i n a g a r .  wealthy  time  However,  got  been  in  his  involved  will  be a s u c c e s s . Mohammad  Bazlur  was t h i r t y - n i n e  Rahman was a c o u s i n of  years  old,  Rajshahi  as a c l e r k . '  b i g h a s of  land.  Rainagar,  and  Bazlur member  of  on  present  the at  was  related  him.  Bazlur  had  little  member of  He  University  of  the  His  duty In  Rahman,  local  of  selected  two  club in  in  1981.  him  as  a  i n c l u d e d t h e o r g a n i z a t i o n and  his  the  opinion, It  Rainagar's  seems t h a t  Gram Pradhan  o n l y a t t e n d e d a few of knowledge  and owned  BNP Committee i n R a i n a g a r  some d i s h o n e s t p e o p l e .  to F a z l u r  the  the meeting which  Gram S a r k a r .  included  at  Rahman.  He was a commerce g r a d u a t e  7  e x p a n s i o n of mass e d u c a t i o n . Sarkar  worked  He was an a c t i v e was  was not  and  Fazlur  the  the  did  Gram S a r k a r  institution's  Gram  since  not  he  trust  meetings  and  activities  in  Rainagar. Mohammad  Matiur  Rahman  was  businessman.  He owned a s a w m i l l ,  was a  of  member  personality y o u t h wing member  of in  as  the  Ziaur  1 980.  AL, Rahman.  1 8  involving  the  of  Sarkar  succeeded in  in  khas l a n d s  r o a d b u i l d i n g and  in  was  Matiur  care among  thirty-eight  year  and no a g r i c u l t u r a l  He d e s c r i b e d  distribution had  but  a  of  later  land.  attracted  became a member of his  job  as  landless  them. law  administration  in  the  the  BNP  Rainagar.  Sarkar  and  thought  and o r d e r  He  by  Gram  farmers  Matiur  improving the  a  old  the Gram  situation, Cottage  183  industries available  were to  meetings  of  Jalaluddin  the  1975, but  leaders.  He  1 9  the  rural  development  mentioning  financial Pradhan that  alone  all  to  conducted a l l t o work  attending  t h e Gram S a r k a r  members,  too,  had l e f t  He was a  the  Accounts  the  with the  that  in  and  of of  found  many  nothing  worth  by  get  this credit  government  said  that  transactions.  would be f u t i l e ,  its  portfolio  should the  of  intention  Rainagar  know i f  gave  the  Gram  Understanding  Jalaluddin  He c l a i m e d t h a t  t h e Gram S a r k a r  the  old.  in  with  Union P a r i s h a d  meetings.  all  "misdeeds"  and s t a t e d  such  was  week.  Jalaluddin  projects,  time  He s u p p o r t e d t h e AL  the  entrusted  He d i d not  these  attempts  due  accomplished the  years  He s e r v e d  health.  roads. for  attended  Rajshahi.  Gram S a r k a r  He t h o u g h t  help  of  He was  been  improving the  own.  Gram S a r k a r  and  within  had  institution.  his  the  villagers.  irregularities  forty-three  the p a r t y  joined  serving  for  was  University left  Matiur  little  w h i c h were h e l d t w i c e e v e r y  w i t h no l a n d of  at  s u c c e s s f u l as v e r y  programmes.  Gram S a r k a r  matriculate  until  least  initiate  Mohammad  Section  the  in Rainagar  stopped  some for  other similar  reasons. Mohammad B a d i u r s t u d i e d up t o c l a s s rickshaw  for  politics. after BNP,  Rahman was ten.  a living.  Badiur  he s u p p o r t s t h a t members  He d i d not  were  years  own any  old  land,  He a p p e a r e d c o n f u s e d i n h i s  admitted that  independence,  Sarkar  2 0  forty-seven  although  he  he was a Gram S a r k a r  party  now.  not  supposed  must  be  had  and p u l l e d a ideas  preferred  since  It  and  about  the  AL  member from  the  noted  t o be s e l e c t e d  that on  Gram  partisan  1 84  grounds. was  Badiur  therefore  development time  in  Nasrin  school  Planning  most of  village  the  by s e l e c t i n g  of  nine,  cottage  of .  Sultana and was  Sarkar,  however,  Pradhan.  2  resignation interest  the  Gram  considerable  and l o c a l  settlement  old  housewife  who  She was e x t r e m e l y 2 1  She was  in  in Rainagar. until  shy  and  charge  of  Nasrin  she  got  remained vacant  had  Jahan  married  and was  not  member.  in Rainagar  b e c a u s e of  She was a h o u s e w i f e  and  not  adequate  Sarkar.  t h e Gram S a r k a r position  of  s e l e c t e d a s t h e Gram S a r k a r member  land.  Another was  nine.  get  had been  situation Gram  pisciculture  he d i d not  there  my q u e s t i o n s .  Her  and  and  was twenty-two y e a r s o l d , had s t u d i e d up  industries  cultivable  2  that  class  another  s e w i n g and k n i t t i n g . own  livestock  and Women's A f f a i r s  and l e f t  class  thought  to  cultivation,  He a t t e n d e d most  f o r m a t i o n of  up  meetings  Razia  projects.  the  fish  Unfortunately,  law and o r d e r  attended a l l  filled  of  in  J a h a n was a twenty-two y e a r  c o u l d not answer Family  charge  and  the  disputes after  attended  in  on t h e s e  meetings,  improvements of  put  in Rainagar.  t o work  Sarkar  had some e x p e r i e n c e  and her  She c o u l d not a f f o r d tendered  her  Gram S a r k a r accepted.  and s t o p p e d a t t e n d i n g  spare  resignation  member  informed  However, the  her  meetings.  Razia  in  charge  expertise family time to me  to  did for  the that  Sultana  in not Gram Gram her lost  185  AN OVERVIEW Gram S a r k a r a  few  was e s t a b l i s h e d  e x c e p t i o n s , most of  accomplishment  adequate  successfully  initiated.  settling verdict  disputes.  The  distribution  Regular  Gram S a r k a r The  of  relief  of  district  headquarter of  town.  said  they  knew o n l y  the  t o h e l p i n g the v i l l a g e r s  Rahman,  the or  cite  the  Many  that  to  their  concerned roads  and  accomplishments  of  Over  knew  present to  the  said  two-thirds  of  Gram S a r k a r  Gram P r a d h a n . or  in times  Chairman former  of  of  reliable  of  need. the  the  efficiently leaders.  the in  respondents Rainagar,  About  the  villagers  of my  a  none  small the  enough when i t  came  Most p e o p l e would go  Rahman.  because  he  Gram S a r k a r  respondents  Mansur The Gram was  in  Surprisingly, was  and a p p r o a c h e d and r e c e i v e d  four-fifths  a  of  were c o n d u c t e d .  thought  to  attended  Union P a r i s h a d ,  the  half  they  members,  Chairman, Fazlur  interviews  general  proximity  However,  jail  time  its  people  not m e n t i o n e d , p r o b a b l y  its  been  discuss  seemed t o be aware of  name was  about  it  devoted  repair  other  Pradhan's at  were  its  if  have  a c c e p t e d by t h e  as  were c o n s i d e r e d c a p a b l e  to  hope t h a t  claimed  p r o b l e m s due t o  the Gram S a r k a r .  interviewed  either  v i e w s of  could  they  members  Rainagar  and a d m i n i s t r a t i v e  members  time  With  .  residents  percentage  the  materials  1980.  m e e t i n g s were h e l d t o  could only  political  meetings  changes  was g e n e r a l l y  members  of  major  Gram S a r k a r  on s u c h m a t t e r s  parties.  and e x p r e s s e d t h e  time,  p r o b l e m s , but most  i n June  members had p o s i t i v e  i n the v i l l a g e ,  were a l l o w e d  local  its  in Rainagar  in  help  run from  Rainagar  186  said  Gram S a r k a r  they  could specify  t o widows i n  the  had b r o u g h t a b o u t only  Rainagar  road r e p a i r s  village  The d i s t r i b u t i o n showed  s u g g e s t e d by t h e  listed  the  family  food planning  forestry; and  and  office  the  unit  agriculture;  banks;  law  Gram S a r k a r  and  put  a  landless  the  forestry,  member  peasants.  willingness  to  conditions  i n the  in  with  of  the  Sarkar  modify  villagers,  had b e n e f i t t e d  S a r k a r members worked  as  the  volume o f  of  from  Gram S a r k a r  t o be a l l o c a t e d  the  livestock;  mass e d u c a t i o n ; and  the  set-up  youth,  health.  portfolios with  a new d e p a r t m e n t  l e a d e r s h i p thus  and  cooperatives  development  proposed  Manual  c o m m u n i c a t i o n , works affairs;  in the  among  and  industries;  and r u r a l  the  was a b l e  Gram S a r k a r .  could not,  wheat  2 3  of  health,  to d e a l  with  demonstrated  the  to adjust  to  the  colleagues  of  the  village.  Union P a r i s h a d ,  They  of  slightly  amalgamated  charge  But  his  its  rivals  members and not influential  his were  more  successful  1981 t h a t  t h e common  people  in  the v i l l a g e  receive  better  assistance.  full  time  their  jobs  work  at  devote  increased.  or  enough t i m e  Gram  villagers.  and  or w o u l d n o t , its  to convince  who r e a l i z e d by t h e end of  They c o u l d a p p r o a c h o t h e r the  But  efforts.  pisciculture  cottage  The l o c a l  The Gram Pradhan utility  The  and o r d e r ;  In  with  departed  women's a f f a i r s ;  affairs;  agriculture  successful  government.  s p o r t s and c u l t u r a l Rainagar,  only  management and r e l i g i o u s  cooperative  the v i l l a g e .  and d i s t r i b u t i o n  responsibilities  and  in  p o r t f o l i o s among Gram S a r k a r members this  pattern  members:  as  of  that  following  changes  Most  and Gram  businesses. t o Gram S a r k a r  S i n c e membership  did  not  187  bring work  financial for  the  remunerations,  body.  t h e members had no i n c e n t i v e  Within eighteen  months of  its  establishment,  two members had r e s i g n e d ,  one g o t m a r r i e d and l e f t  and a few  interest  In  others  Rainagar,  p r e s i d e d over people  establishment to  the  selection  and of  by t h e Gram P r a d h a n ,  likely  Pradhan  had l o s t  to of  strengthen  Gram S a r k a r  secure h i s  his  leadership  to e s t a b l i s h  in  w i t h the  Sarkar.  They t r i e d  the  Thus t h e  BNP.  the  which,  in t h e i r  support  for  benefits the  between  rival  and i t s  clearly  the  affiliation  new  village  established himself long  tarnish  But  the  were  the  Gram He  under hoping  t h r o u g h Gram  by w o r k i n g  mutual  image of  the  t o work  party  members and t h e  The  village.  battles,  this  defined  and t h e Gram P r a d h a n ,  power was h i s over  for  the  benefits  factional  select  local  for  group  demonstrated exchange  of  BNP was u s e d by new  institution  leadership.  T h e r e were two Rahman  t o win  i n power.  to  of  political  political  t h e Gram S a r k a r  faction  leader  to  was  leadership.  succeeded in developing a  attempts  the p a r t y  local  T h e s e members  ruling  village,  members  anxious  members w i l l i n g  body.  to a t t a i n  party  was  came as an o p p o r t u n i t y  the v i l l a g e  a link  t h e Gram S a r k a r  who  succeeded i n a s s e m b l i n g a group of his  the  initiative.  bid for  p o s i t i o n as  to  period  was u s e f u l influential  of  with the  Ansar.  His  i n h e l p i n g the i n the  But  leader  bases of  villagers,  in  power and  urban a r e a s .  led  by  The l a t t e r ' s  ruling party  institution.  as a p o w e r f u l  time.  people  Ali  factions  the  of  control  Rahman  locality  were h i s his  source  and h i s  Fazlur  Fazlur  had  over  a  wealth  which  connections  with  The c o n f l i c t  between  the  188  two  leaders  be  exercised  local  arose  over  through  institution  in the  the  village  the  t o be e f f e c t i v e  Gram S a r k a r  villagers  in  another  links  access  to  town,  the  Mafizuddin,  funds f o r  higher  local  government  demonstrate  its  were l i m i t e d  to only  union  level  their  leaders  habituated  to  down t o  the  lowest  Gram S a r k a r  all  go  efforts  members  had  not  Rahman  who l o s t  effective The  in  the  Gram S a r k a r ,  influencing  to  so  was  They  had  and  district  to Rainagar the and  thus  and  village  therefore,  links  the  Union  power  from  with  the  villagers Parishad trickling  level.  Fazlur  in  a  b y p a s s e d by t h e  to prevent  b e f o r e assuming the  t h e p o s i t i o n of  and  to  in  close  directly  leaders  initiated  contacts  was  capable  BNP  close  the  leadership.  government,  officials  developed  who  made  experience,  leading p e r s o n a l i t i e s ,  Gram S a r k a r  who  Being  Rahman  weakness  in Rainagar.  local  c o u l d send i t s  a few  past  to  The new  the  accessible  lived of  case,  Fazlur  c o n t r i b u t e d to  was  level  officials.  leaders,  operation.  who  But  of  the Union P a r i s h a d  government were  its  projects.  presence.  this  of Gram S a r k a r .  Following in  in  influence  meanwhile,  Rainagar.  w i t h the  Rainagar,  the  the Union P a r i s h a d  member,  closer  these  in  had more c o n f i d e n c e  The C h a i r m a n of  of  institution  had t o overcome  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d , of  control  established  responsibilities.  official  local  continued his  the  new c o u n c i l .  local  decisions,  themselves  His  Moreover,  leadership after  efforts  contacts  to  as  the  undermine  and w e a l t h  helped  and i n making Gram S a r k a r  barely  Rainagar.  accomplishments  of  Gram S a r k a r  in  Rainagar  are  189  impressive  in comparison with  studied.  A  prepared the for  the  namely, the the  relatively ground f o r  village  the  s u c c e s s was  and t h e  initiation  of  of  were  e x e c u t i o n of  l i m i t e d because  by  institution  expressing  and  Gram S a r k a r the  very  were a c c o m p l i s h e d . some  The l a c k  had  they  few of  progress,  organization projects.  gained  the  had  institution  factions  to  into  control  make  of But  came  government  village  to  S a r k a r members.  did the  the  its  the  a b s e n c e of  loss  in to  regular The  done  of  The i n s t i t u t i o n  Gram S a r k a r  operation.  of  its  its  were  meetings,  villagers possibilities  law  creation out  by t h e  a fixed  of not new  to  an  duties  the  only  of  and  institution areas  and o r d e r a  and  new  existing source  the  road local  income  any  Gram major  villagers. in  a room f o r  a  in  bodies.  of  undertake  maintaining  demonstrated as  the  succeeded  renting and  of  during  by some S w a n i r v a r  c o u l d not  usefulness  members,  their  that  interest  Rainagar  in Rainagar  objectives  c o u l d be c a r r i e d  and d e m o n s t r a t e  responsibilities  active  aware  the  justified  f u n d s and t h e  contributed  conducting  for  quite  were  been  These h a r d l y  of  the  some l o c a l  The members a d m i t t e d  work  since  was  members  responsibilities,  repairs.  the  local  village  support in  mobilization  a  that  were  successful.  Although 1980-81  rival  which  some s i g n s of  The f a c t i o n  have a s t r o n g s u p p o r t b a s e  towards  degree  There  w i t h one a n o t h e r .  Gram S a r k a r  project  villages  a c o n s c i o u s and e d u c a t e d c o u n c i l ,  conflict  body  other  higher  level.  Gram S a r k a r  which  the  allocating the  office,  r e c o r d s of  positive  instrument  its  attitude for  local  190  development. were  the p r i o r i t i e s  consistent  with  production,  development  of  generating  rural  in  not  But  other  concentrated materials, of  the  on  the  rural  priority  But law  poor.  purpose.  Villagers  significant  Rainagar's order  Gram S a r k a r  were  c h a n g e s Gram S a r k a r  of  among  the  in  local  Rainagar,  S a r k a r c o u l d not  cope.  resulted  leadership of  relief  the  loyalty  in Rainagar  accorded  village  relief  material  disillusioned  was  development  the  s u p p o s e d t o be  through for  about  negated  projects.  The  from  in a s i t u a t i o n  the  this the  initiating.  leadership  combined w i t h s t r o n g r e s i s t a n c e in  to  over  food  employment-  distribution  leadership  village  implementing  and  could lead  in winning  soon  Increased  bodies,  and t h e  being c r u c i a l  activities  Gram S a r k a r  u s e d government-awarded  squabbles  possibility  leaders  projects  t o b u i l d i n g up a s u p p o r t base and  finances,  objectives.  cooperative  and  latter  patronage  Petty  its  development  areas.  accorded to v a r i o u s  lack  any of  established  w i t h which  Gram  191  NOTES 1  Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. Bangladesh D i s t r i c t Gazetteers Rajshahi (Dacca: Special O f f i c e r , B a n g l a d e s h Government P r e s s , 1 9 7 6 ) , p p . 34-5.  2  See W.W. Hunter. A S t a t i s t i c a l Account of B e n g a l , V I I I ( L o n d o n : T r u b n e r & C o . , 1876. Reprinted, Delhi: P u b l i s h i n g House, 1974), pp. 20-21.  3  Preliminary Report on the Census B i c h i t r a , J u l y 3, 1981, p. 17  4  Bichitra,  5  Bangladesh D i s t r i c t  6  Government of t h e P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of B a n g l a d e s h . P o p u l a t i o n S t a t i s t i c s , R a j s h a h i Sadar S u b d i v i s i o n B a n g l a d e s h Government P r e s s , 1976) .  7  These figures were obtained by an employee of the U n i v e r s i t y of R a j s h a h i , who was a permanent r e s i d e n t of t h e v i l l a g e from t h e f o r m e r Gram P r a d h a n a f t e r h i s r e l e a s e from detent i o n .  8  Bangladesh D i s t r i c t  9  See The I m p e r i a l G a z e t t e e r s Clarendon P r e s s , 1908), pp.  10  Bangladesh D i s t r i c t Gazetteers Rajshahi. p. become t h e p r e s e n t s i t e f o r R a j s h a h i town.  11  Village  12  S t a t e d by two Gram S a r k a r members i n  13  R a s h i d u l Hoq was  14  Naresh Chandra Sarkar 2 3 , 1982.  15  Equivalent 1 982.  16  Nasir 1982.  17  Bazlur  Rahman was  interviewed  on May  16, 1982.  18  Matiur 1982.  Rahman was  interviewed  in his  sawmill  July  3,  1981, p.  Population  Ali  to was  Gazetteers  interviewed  12.  interviewed  Rajshahi.  p.  Rajshahi.  of I n d i a , 160-168.  Statistics,  grade  1981 i n t h e  weekly  17.  Gazetteers  was  of  Vol. D.K.  83.  p.  248.  Vol.  Rajshahi  XXI  Sadar  their  Village (Dacca:  (Oxford:  324.  This  Subdivision.  interviews.  on May 2 1 , 1982.  interviewed Alam was in h i s  i n h i s house interviewed  furniture  store  on  on  May  on May 18, on May 2 2 ,  May  19,  192  19  Jalaluddin  was  interviewed  20  Badiur  21  Nasrin J a h a n was i n t e r v i e w e d i n her b r o t h e r ' s house on May 2 3 , 1982 when she came t o v i s i t h i m . Her b r o t h e r , another Gram S a r k a r member, h e l p e d her answer some q u e s t i o n s .  22  Razia Sultana was interviewed on May 17, 1982. Another Gram S a r k a r member, A t a r A l i S a r d a r , who has an H.S.C. degree and was in charge of y o u t h a f f a i r s i n R a i n a g a r , c o u l d not be i n t e r v i e w e d . He made two appointments, but f a i l e d t o show up e a c h t i m e .  23  Government of the People's Republic of S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r Manual (Dhaka: Local I n s t i t u t e , 1980), p p . 7-8.  Rahman was  on May 2 0 ,  interviewed  in h i s  1982. house on May 2 3 ,  1982.  Bangladesh. Government  193  VIII.  GRAM SARKAR  Gram S a r k a r s improving l i v i n g foregoing that were  not  is  specific  show  a  of  reasons  conditions  in for  the  The  villages  i n the c o u n t r y  shows  d e s i r e d by  the  government  however,  the  degree  My o b j e c t i v e  comparative three  for  of  Bangladesh.  analysis  villages  such v a r i a t i o n s ,  necessary  intention  of  villages.  a  the  villages  objectives  that  performance  the  three  among t h e  government number  the  with  Significantly,  varied  to  in  of  achieved.  A COMPARATIVE OVERVIEW  introduced  conditions  the  accomplishment  PRACTICE:  were  examination  most of  chapter  IN  local  I  in  local  observed  government  this  of  and p r o v i d e s  of  reveals clues  reforms  to to  succeed. There  are  several  comparing the v i l l a g e s history some  of  local  influence  distinctive and  social  will  now  attempts  life  must a l s o  to  compare  therein the  Gram S a r k a r was d e v e l o p e d .  and  their see  indigenous  was  position if  members  have  been  economic  conditions  of  well the  new  social  changes  accomplishments.  will  also  be^ compared  A c o m p a r i s o n of  behind the  variations  all in  these the  to  I  in  the  as  the local  structure in  The f u n c t i o n s p e r f o r m e d by t h e Gram S a r k a r s villages  has The  be u n d e r s t o o d .  in the v i l l a g e  there  change.  as  in The  obviously  political,  introduced,  The  Rainagar.  at  of  be e x a m i n e d t o  reasons  recent  considered  leaders  aspects  that  the  and t h e i r  and  and t h e  structure  different  Colipur  be  the v i l l a g e s  when  leadership.  the  must  of  villages  will  of M a n t a l a ,  institutions  on  that  features  try  institution  factors  assess  factors  will  degree  of  local in  the  their reveal success  1 94  e x p e r i e n c e d by Gram S a r k a r  in  the  three  villages.  HISTORY The  evolution  in analyzing They  the  reveal  of  a village  operation  some  of  the  participation  by the  a  families.  few w e a l t h y  us t o compare t h e that  achieved  period that  the  any a t t e m p t  to  got  used to  following  to  the  British  of  Municipality.  a b s e n c e of  any  villagers'  generations,  challenge interest the  local  of  by  also  or  its  in p a r t i c i p a t i n g retained  and  change over  very  The  villagers  little  to  up  from  None  of  the a f f a i r s family  seem t o  have  in  affairs.  local  the  during  two m i l e s  leaders. in  of  who b e l o n g e d  setting only  the  no r e c o r d s  a single  the  to  Colipur  leaders  to p a r t i c i p a t e  others  scheme  The  There are  the  enable  purpose.  little  The  The dominance of  villagers  this  in B a j i t p u r ,  from the  leadership  programs.  government.  affairs.  tried  of  Mantala,  contributed  a f f e c t e d Mantala ever  of  useful  level  will  government  remember.  a Municipality  leaders  past  and  low  t h e Gram S a r k a r  local  directions  families  the  the  the  context  are  institutions.  monopoly of  has w i t n e s s e d  can  history  the p r e s e n t  be u s e d f o r  institutionalize  hardly  village  the  will  residents  the v i l l a g e ,  Bajitpur  about  d e c i s i o n s on l o c a l rule  and t h e  previous  of M a n t a l a  wealthy  for  The h i s t o r i c a l  though s c a n t y ,  making of  reasons  past  government  p r o g r e s s made under  under  The h i s t o r y  local  villagers  information available Rainagar,  of  and i t s  attitude  and  of the  dampened  of  Over leaving  195  important leading  decisions families  centres  the  new l o c a l  family.  So  challenge  to  Bhuiya  has  its  as  for  for  held  of  offices.  the  in By  villagers  the  Bangladesh, in C o l i p u r .  Elliotganj family.  in  in  and own  in  period  emerged as t h e Colipur  turn  to  and b u s i n e s s  to  other  urban a r e a s  nearby  They  few  earlier, the  government  of  Colipur's  launch  commercial  which  some  helped  and i n  the  they  because  enough money t o  small  centre,  independence  had  a  in  witnessed dominant  family.  place the  of  reasonable  the  transfer  family  The h i s t o r y  to of  of  residence  and f l o u r i s h i n g b u s i n e s s e s  new l e a d e r has  to migrate  a  of  opened up some  t o t a k e up permanent  village  from a t r a d i t i o n a l l y  farmer  continued to  there.  in p a r t i c u l a r ,  the  no  moved, h o w e v e r ,  the  following  single was  T h i s was  rule,  the  them r e t u r n e d  by a there  industries  saved  control  The i n d e p e n d e n c e  Even when t h e y family.  these  by t h e Gram S a r k a r .  who were w i l l i n g  Pakistani  One f a m i l y  to e x e r c i s e  united,  matters.  urban  result,  economic a c t i v i t i e s  jobs  the  some of  Thus,  leadership middle  In  land  in a l l  importance  end of  their  was  a  The  i n the  a century  The v i l l a g e r s  Bhuiya  of  As  bodies created about  leaders.  village  were a b l e  had m i g r a t e d t o  earned  on  Elliotganj.  of  family  the  the  have.  family  jobs.  securing  had  businesses  help  on the  positions  villagers  the  villagers  search  of  Mantala  e x p a n s i o n of  remained dependent members  of  of  ouside  do not  leadership.  family  in  amount  links  government  long  opportunities  and  discretion  been d o m i n a t e d f o r  P a k i s t a n and t h e  areas  have  families  Colipur  the  the  w h i c h most v i l l a g e r s  better-off over  to  in  Bhuiya of  local  a  rising  the  village  196  points  to  the  fact  y e a r s and t h a t local  affairs  business urban not  that  the v i l l a g e r s  service  influences. in v i l l a g e  Rainagar Bangladesh situated  is  other  insignificant  of  gained  in  need f o r local  local  l e a d e r s h i p of throughout  beyond  Rainagar, level  the  the  Pakistan  on  Pakistani  rule,  has  leadership.  villagers  of  new  institutions  the  and d i d  from  remained  After of  the several  outskirts,  Rainagar  became c o n s c i o u s of own  role  in  the v i l l a g e  institutions  the  managing  who assumed  retained  district  evolution  experienced very  for  of  and  control  for  some  nature  of  national  period.  past,  The  period.  due t o t h e p e r i - u r b a n  in h i s t o r i c a l  seen no p r e c e d e n t s  typical  pace  Rainagar  and c o n t i n u e d t o do so  The d i f f e r e n c e s Mantala  of  were e x p o s e d t o  a short  too.  different  establishment  their  residents  in  villages  The  noticeably  villagers  and of  many  cities.  Rajshahi's  Meanwhile,  within  is  the  in  roles  politics,  fits  examined.  government  the v i l l a g e r s  politics  and  British  and  The  local  1971.  I  important  community t h a n a  description  towns  the  institutions  the  in union l e v e l  the  villages  Wealthy  the  had done w e l l  were p l a y i n g  and R a i n a g a r  importance.  affairs.  time  of  institutions  over  and were b e i n g e x p o s e d t o  peri-urban  throughout  independence educational  a  outskirts  two  towns,  but  However,  change has been r a p i d , the  the  affairs  1  Some v i l l a g e r s  residents  more  village.  on t h e  in  Local  place  have r e a l i z e d t h a t p a r t i c i p a t i o n  c a n be r e w a r d i n g .  and  only  some c h a n g e s have t a k e n  i n c o r p o r a t i o n of  are  little  care  to  try  clear.  In  change and has  new p e o p l e  were not aware of not  very  the  in  local  possibilities  them  out.  In  197  Colipur,  a rift  within  in  past,  resulted  the  village.  family in  its  villagers  were  l e a d e r s h i p a n d t h e use of  local  gain  The  the  control.  was p o s s i b l e , needed other  services  direct  witnessing  that  institutions  control  the  rise  by t h e s e  t h o u g h change  had  failed  over  the  of  new  leaders  in  to  and e n c o u r a g e p a r t i c i p a t i o n .  village  in  a short  changed over  t h e y e a r s and  engaged  conflict  in  been  provided  participation Mantala  span of  there  provide  the  on  by  local  government  reveals  the  the  factors  play  of  will  t o compare t h e  try  the p o l i t i c a l Mantala, Like  local  government  and s o c i a l  C o l i p u r and most  agricultural  of  village.  in Rainagar  and  than  in  SOCIETIES features  and p o l i t i c a l  important  operation  services  Sarkar.  distinctive  economic, s o c i a l  some  has  groups  institutions  has been g r e a t e r  or C o l i p u r under Gram  defined  the and  The l e a d e r s h i p  However,  to  leadership  Rainagar,  clearly  w i t h one a n o t h e r .  by v i l l a g e r s  A c o m p a r i s o n of  time.  are  POLITICS AND ECONOMY IN THE VILLAGE  These  of  village  h a n d , has d e v e l o p e d f r o m a s m a l l community t o a l a r g e  bustling  have  loss  has d o m i n a t e d t h e  institutions  They c o u l d see local  that  roles  of  each  forces  in  the  institutions.  in  operation.  c o m p o s i t i o n and  In  particular,  economic a c t i v i t i e s  and t h e i r  conditions  three  in  the  village  impact  villages  I on of  Rainagar. the  villages  T h e r e has not  in Bangladesh, been  much  Mantala  is  improvement  an in  198  the  methods  land.  cultivation  The t h r e e  most of in  of  the  the  wealthy  land  own  landless  labourers  result,  very  look  gainful  to  reduce  families  in Mantala.  village  for  or c h a n g e s  few  patches  low compared  people  on t h e  over  only  control  some members of  over  the  Although  village  Mantala  Awami League  (AL),  allegiance  to  several  supporter  of  for  the  the  the  not there  was no t h r e a t  position  was  leaders  of  number of As  a  village  to  been  families, income  able  for  to  levels  they  support  have t o  to ensure  Gram S a r k a r  win  their  party  however,  received  as the  one of  position.  of  Mantala  all  the  from h i s  did  families,  accepted family.  was no a l t e r n a t i v e  be a  leaders  Gram Pradhan  the dominant  the  working  in  The v i l l a g e r s  favours  secure because there  claimed to  (BNP)  preferences  of  claimed  but was a c t u a l l y  Party  from w i t h i n  to h i s  its  (ML),  Nationalist  So l o n g ,  been a s u p p o r t e r  The Gram Pradhan  M u s l i m League  they  the  have not  families  traditionally  parties.  have a c h a l l e n g e r  l e a d e r s h i p because  local  has  political  seemed s u p e r f i c i a l .  outside  higher  leading  190 h o u s e h o l d s  villages.  wealthy  at  themselves  and t h e  other  of  .  the  Bangladesh  Likewise,  these  the  land,  s o u r c e of  politicians  among  of  The v i l l a g e r s  dependence  Naturally,  of  to  have not d i s c o v e r e d an a l t e r n a t i v e themselves.  own  have v e n t u r e d  employment.  their  still  The m a j o r i t y  small  is  in the d i s t r i b u t i o n  leader  his His for  institutions. Socially,  Mantala  has a l w a y s been v e r y  s m a l l community w i t h f o l l o w e r s principally  of  cultivators,  of  the  only  harmonious.  one r e l i g i o n  village  has  not  Being a  and composed encountered  199  major  social  conflicts.  cordial  relations  wealth  have  reduction  of  the  Colipur, contains  and  village  a  change has  is  in  low.  an  village to  of  started  place  areas. in  the  therefore,  in  life  Mantala.  are  meagre. have  not  about  the  although  it  apathetic  urban  life  Thus,  factions  by t h e  villagers  were  village  end not  or  on  to  the  Gradually,  urban  made them aware of  and t h e  two  village,  migrating  into  i n the  has,  f i s h e r m e n as w e l l .  family  property  urban  The v i l l a g e r s  agricultural  At  Colipur's  expand  place.  of  remain  outside Colipur.  further.  the  to  resulted  taken taken  opportunities  even  in  amenities  and  community  exposure  split  attempts  have had  Mantala. is  small  has  extremely  mobilized,  too,  from t h e  the  families  The v i l l a g e  no d e v e l o p m e n t  living  conditions  workers  the  land.  and l i t t l e  politically  static  their  no good r o a d s and o t h e r  The s t a n d a r d of been  and  outside  other's  sum, a l m o s t  There are  leading  of more w e a l t h by one has not  remained p e a c e f u l In  three  i n the p a s t ,  occurred  The a c q u i s i t i o n  The  the  of  same rift  time, cut  Pakistani  entirely the  economic  the  their  Bhuiya  influence  rule,  dependent  Bhuiya  areas,  some on  family  of  landed  for  their  livelihood. Colipur and most of party are  at  had the  it  power,  the  local  some p o i n t .  no l o n g e r  found  been  a s t r o n g h o l d of  leaders Since  physically  convenient BNP.  The  admit  that  they  the B h u i y a s ,  present  to  t h e AL f o r  shift  Union P a r i s h a d  time,  had s u p p o r t e d  who worked  and d o m i n a n t , their  a long  the  allegiance Chairman  for new  to  the  the  AL,  leaders  the p a r t y  and  the  in  Gram  200  Pradhan taken  had not  advantage  family  to  turned against of  the c o n f l i c t  increase  members of  the  villagers  found the  source  of  substantial power  Bhuiya  help  in  addition  is  villagers  d i d not  leaders of  in  live  within  Colipur. in  the  however, the  S i n c e most  village,  the  t o be t h e b e s t  alternative  as a  need  they  because  possess  w e a l t h and have c o n n e c t i o n s w i t h t h e  a large  are  pressed for  involved they  situation  affects  in are  these  totally  a few  bridges.  s i g n s of  and  a  urban  the  of  stages,  developmental  service  population, been  and  sale  of  lands,  family.  Since  The v i l l a g e r s  to put  on a few  in  the  it  the  at  villagers  resent  the  fact  families,  but  of a c t i o n  t o change  the  effect.  liberation  in  some  leading  villagers  improvements efforts  into  struggle  is  living  and  the  demonstrated  in  conditions.  construction  of  There  roads since  and 1981.  improvements were not c o n t i n u e d beyond  and t h e v i l l a g e  activities  were  in  have  l e a d i n g Bhuiya  on a c o u r s e  active  past  aimed a t  Muslims.  there  ownership  dependent  to decide  of  high density  C o l i p u r has been s u p p l i e d w i t h e l e c t r i c i t y  The p r o j e c t s initial  land  the  c o n s c i o u s n e s s of  expectations  the  disputes.  was q u i t e  of  many s h a r e c r o p p e r s , many o t h e r  and t a k e s t e p s  Colipur political  over  composed e n t i r e l y  b u s i n e s s and government  Due t o  among members of  ownership  their  village  engaged i n  have n o t been a b l e  are  family  times  incidents  particularly  that  disintegration  influence  to a g r i c u l t u r e .  violent  get  and  They h a d ,  centres.  S e v e r a l people are  the  Bhuiyas.  their  new  amount of  Colipur  the  the  remains at initiated.  the  point  it  the  was when  201  The Mantala its  economy  suitable explore  soil  for  and  resources  quite  hot  farming.  different  and  The  outside Rainagar,  have  dry  and have  place  of  brick  live  work.  in  entered the  links  contacts.  Rainagar  buildings,  population  that  close  Local  power  help  villagers,  leader  is  he  wealth,  challenge. 1980.  d i s t r i b u t e d on t h e mostly  was  help  support  influence However,  faction previous  to  soon l o s t leader  Rainagar  is  of  in  financial  the N a t i o n a l  of  the  frustrated  the  various as  the  villagers  close a  they  to  their  suburb  with  facilities,  and a  town.  wealth  matters.  businessmen of  Rajshahi.  and a b i l i t y Since  Awami P a r t y  BNP.  But as  previous  the  local  village.  j o i n e d the village  leader kept  of  a  to  [pro-Moscow]  from the  he d i d not have the  to  Rajshahi  wealthy  AL l e a d e r  c o n t r o l as v i l l a g e r s  the  had  and c o n n e c t i o n s h e l p e d him t o overcome  continue  for  not  village  headquarters  basis  to d i s l o d g e the  from the  base  obviously  c h a l l e n g e d by an AL l e a d e r  He was a b l e  direct  are  w i t h the d i s t r i c t  was a s u p p o r t e r  (NAP-M),  look l i k e telephone  out,  However, is  commutes t o R a j s h a h i  in Rainagar  links  and  it  of  with  Thus,  because  has begun t o  electricity  regularly  The l e a d e r s who have  the v i l l a g e  carried  have  on incomes e a r n e d m o s t l y o u t s i d e R a i n a g a r . to  from t h a t  summers a r e  around  established  b u s i n e s s and o t h e r  is  villagers  situated  Some v i l l a g e r s  through  continue  His  extremely  institutions  employees.  is  A l t h o u g h some c u l t i v a t i o n  extensive  educational  live  Rainagar  and C o l i p u r .  sandy  town  of  BNP  leader  strong Rainagar  the in with  enough and  his  on g o i n g back t o  the  assistance. largest  village  among t h e  three  in  size.  202  The  density  composed of the its  river.  of  population  char  land,  Rainagar  2  residents  k i n d s of  are  contractors  the  support  are  conflicts  manifest meetings. try  to  Small  There are issues  and  of  C o l i p u r or  It  is  political  leads  s u c h c h a n g e s as t h e  political alternate  There become  local  council  not  in  power  question  such  to  its  incidents. the  strengthen  improvement  Developmentally, progressed  has to  the  than  in  Rainagar  seems  further  than  place  the  in the  changes.  extent  of  villages  of  in  the  be  three  influence, elites,  U s i n g the degree  3  a s s u m p t i o n s can  administrative leaders  measure  d e s c r i b e d m o b i l i z a t i o n as an " i n d u c e d "  substantial  basis,  to  has t a k e n  The e x p o s u r e t o u r b a n  group of  s i g n s of  difficult  mobilization achieved  and  over  sides  m o b i l i z e d and has  m o b i l i z a t i o n that  p r o c e s s which  studied.  and  have  have become c o n s c i o u s of  taken  .  must  these  who a r e  ineffective  more v i s i b l e  extremely  Nettl  of  p r o c e e d i n g s of  have t a k e n p l a c e  have  leaders  in  people,  t o be s u c c e s s f u l .  factions  the v i l l a g e r s  engaged  Mantala.  Bangladesh.  level  body  Bangladesh  t o have been b e t t e r either  rival  H i n d u s among  are  and  is  beneath  t h e most p o w e r f u l  interests,  to obstruct  and  There are  in order  various  scuffles  stakes  villages  However,  people  local  signs that  factions. most  the  the v i l l a g e  submerged  and t h e v i l l a g e r s  such m e e t i n g s ,  prove  actions.  these  attempts  At  is  and b u s i n e s s m e n , and l o c a l  among t h e  in  as most of  has a s i z e a b l e p r o p o r t i o n of  occupations.  of  low  which o c c a s i o n a l l y  (15 p e r c e n t ) ,  various the  is  made villages  links  and  the  with  about  the  that  were  district  presence  have c o n t r i b u t e d t o a h i g h  of  of  level  an of  203  political  mobilization  in  Rainagar.  t o u c h e d by o u t s i d e  influences,  of  can be s a i d t h a t ,  leadership.  continuum,  It  Mantala  and  extremes w h i l e C o l i p u r  and has  Rainagar  is  near  absolutely  agricultural,  while  occupation  of  only  a  Rainagar,  is  w h i l e the  better-off,  pressure.  The  dependent  on  other  villagers the  in Rainagar  of  in  rely  Colipur,  one f i n d s a c o m b i n a t i o n of all  the  sole determinant  of  w e a l t h and a c c e s s officials leaders while  contribute  Rainagar, village  factional  conflicts,  leading  leadership.  family  while  for  the  leader  Mantala  in C o l i p u r ,  conditions  required  adjustments  in  the  the of  efficiently.  But  scheme  p r e s c r i b e d the  same i n s t i t u t i o n  for  all  the  by  the  p o s s e s s i o n of and  government  influence.  the  not  power,  BNP  before  experience  a new  the  regions,  within  family  were more were  The  in  conflict  Gram S a r k a r  designed for  of In  no l o n g e r  party  for  villages  rules  of  factional  factions  three  the  those  village.  is  did  the  The l o c a l  while  joined  In  Rainagar,  entirely  politicians  opportunity  leaders.  population,  almost  At p r e s e n t ,  p r o v i d e d the  emerge a s  the  population  the  the a c q u i s i t i o n  aspirant  is  high  influence  ruling party  the  remains  population. of  village,  leadership.  more t o  face  two  both.  and C o l i p u r worked  assuming  the  the  the  Mantala  density  outside  traditional  local  to  in Mantala in  resources  villages,  represent  are  the  mobilization  working  lowest  Mantala  Rainagar  In  on  the  been change  , agriculture  two v i l l a g e s  resources  mostly  to  centre.  of  not  not e x p e r i e n c e d a  seem  w i t h the  has  on a p o l i t i c a l  the  quarter  Economically,  Mantala  evident.  varied to  to  and  operate  government and made no  204  allowance  for  such  diversity.  Ministry  of  Local  The  Government,  Cooperatives,  and r e p r e s e n t e d t h e  stationed  the  at  them w i t h o u t institutions  any  the  of  be c o m p a r e d . structures,  to  the  This w i l l functions,  areas  village.  the  FUNCTIONS,  local  reveal  the  Development  and  the  officials  who  are  The government  approved  villages  the  had  new  PERSONNEL  conditions  in  the  the  three  may a c c o u n t  for  inevitably  in which  it  villages  must  differences,  and t h e p e r s o n n e l their  varying  the  characteristics  involved  in  local  from l o c a l  government variations.  structure  accentuated  itself in  their  Differences of  implemented in d i f f e r e n t basic  followed,  operated,  any,  degrees  the  was  if  involved.  Although  government  resulting  in Dhaka.  Gram S a r k a r s  The same scheme was each  v i e w s of  thus,  STRUCTURE,  addition  operation  in these  change;"  Rural  were framed by  imposed upon them.  LOCAL GOVERNMENT; In  Secretariat  rules  success. ways  in  s u g g e s t e d by  the  of the  the  people  differences  205  STRUCTURE Mantala the  had i t s  Gram S a r k a r  attended  the  Mantala.  the  Officer's  names f o r  s u p p o r t e r s of  selected  on  selection  responsibilities  day  at  Gram S a r k a r  village Parishad,  was  not  were not  of  first  Previously,  as  the  1980.  Union P a r i s h a d  He  got  as  responsibilities, they  his  list  of  institutions  meeting.  The  duties  and  claimed that most of  of  the  at  attended.  s e l e c t e d as  the  the Union  The Gram  members a p p r o v e d  villagers  who  the m e e t i n g .  t h e members d e n i e d  this,  were  Although specific  and  stated  assignments.  opportunity  of  in  since  late  the  local  Officer  t h e members were a s s i g n e d  their  a of  The C i r c l e  the  has had t h e action  of  residents  Gram S a r k a r  About h a l f  had no knowledge a b o u t  Rainagar  members  the  sparsely  C h a i r m a n was  members were n o t p r e s e n t  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  eleven  f o r m a t i o n of Gram S a r k a r  The m e e t i n g was  the  any d i f f i c u l t y .  selected  only  objected  C h a i r m a n and members of  a r r a n g e d the  without  Since  a  nobody  their  various  thana  Pradhan.  who were  submitted  experience  of M u r a d n a g a r  of  for  time.  the Union B o a r d .  in  at  i n f o r m e d of  that,  Colipur  then  the  present  villagers  villagers  were p r e s e n t , Five  under  Gram S a r k a r  as Gram S a r k a r members.  not C o l i p u r ' s  served  of  and b e f o r e  brother  that  the  number of  The Gram P r a d h a n  were  institution.  had  inauguration  was c o n s t i t u t e d .  that  institution  1980, a s m a l l  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  members who were p r e s e n t  government  government  was c h o s e n by t h e  the m e e t i n g .  and Gram S a r k a r  in  In  The Gram Pradhan  of  (CO.)  local  scheme.  Circle  asked to attend list  first  seeing  local  government  1960s when t h e  Union  206  C o u n c i l C h a i r m a n s h i p of of  the v i l l a g e .  the  When t h e Gram S a r k a r  villagers  showed i n t e r e s t  meetings  of  man i n did  the  not  the  to  he a l s o  succeed,  and  about  new c o u n c i l .  village, wish  However,  Shamla U n i o n was won by  fifty  s e r v e d as a  return  the  not  especially  if  want  they  level  the  But  prevent  Ali  Ansar  Ansar  successfully  followers  Fazlur  selected  a c o u s i n of  serve  on  the  absentia.  not  council.  government.  and  selection Sarkar  accused of  by  village  and  leader.  leaders  faction,  to h i s  to  since  position  in  were u n a b l e  to  t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  Ali  selection  own  Only  two  Rahman.  of  of  selected  The v i l l a g e  assembly  his  supporters  t h e members was  and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s  his  the.  Rahman and one of  O n l y one of  and p r o c e d u r e o f because  in Mantala  their  in these  proposed  the  of  all  to  selected the  in  members  followed  the meeting t h a t the  in the  published  i n most o t h e r  respects.  of  s u p p o r t e r s as members.  government.  had no  they  was h e l d t o c o n s t i t u t e  Gram P r a d h a n s  idea  Basically,  three  the Manual  and C o l i p u r c o m p l a i n e d t h a t  two v i l l a g e s  the  they  Gram S a r k a r  They were d i s s i m i l a r  informed about  Sarkar  as  leader,  a village  followers  powerful  assigned.  were s i m i l a r  The v i l l a g e r s  Fazlur  Fazlur  constitution  villages by t h e  to  The d u t i e s  were p r o m p t l y The  manipulated  loyal  new  Rahman and h i s  as Gram S a r k a r members. were  of  threat  from b e i n g s e l e c t e d  members  union  the  attended  t h e most  belonged to another  he c o n s i d e r e d them t o be a p o t e n t i a l Rainagar.  villagers  Rahman,  had a l r e a d y  did  resident  scheme was a n n o u n c e d ,  Fazlur  to  a  manipulating The members o f  about they  the  d i d not  were Gram the Gram  structure know what  207  they  c o u l d do w i t h t h e  Gram S a r k a r  members  instructions  contained  accordingly. and C o l i p u r structure  to  local  step  in  institution Rainagar  in  can  failed  of  essential  It  new  be c o n c l u d e d t h a t follow  the  that  up an  the  The  have  been  for  the  organization  leaders  instructions  institution.  should  them.  seemed t o have u n d e r s t o o d  t h e Manual and s e t  government  Sarkars could start  imposed upon  in  Mantala  establishing a  T h i s was taken  the  before  first  the  Gram  functioning.  FUNCTIONS Gram S a r k a r s were s e t number  of  specific  overall  development  up w i t h t h e  functions of  the  f u n c t i o n s p e r f o r m e d and t h e these  areas  Sarkars•  It  functions  will is  could  period  of  time  include  the  initiation  Gram S a r k a r  in  expected f u n c t i o n s .  residence  was  the  Some of  out  in  the  of  some of  of  the  three of  functions  to  required I  will  functions  in  Gram  assigned  p e r i o d over  Therefore,  the  villages  the  a the  of  s u c c e s s of  all  short  these  executing  comparison  that  the  a  which longer  attempt  among  to  those  Sarkar. Mantala The l e a d e r s  performed  for  almost  c o u l d not  A d i l a p i d a t e d room i n used  A  of  contribute  degree  to expect  t o be c o m p l e t e d .  a c c o m p l i s h e d by Gram  the c o u n c i l .  achievement  carried  operated.  would  villages.  unreasonable  Gram S a r k a r  for  which  demonstrate  be  intention  the m e e t i n g s ,  even  the  set  none up an  of  its  office  Member-Secretary's  and t h e  Member-Secretary  208  kept  inadequate  house.  The  functions  records  members  of  the  Gram  Member-Secretary member,  but  members  claimed  meetings were  it  of  specific  did to  adjudication  of  school  lasted  More were  than  to  perform  said  that  point  to  the  Gram  any  villagers  had  not  Sarkar  in  Gram  who  Sarkar its  residents  among  services  in  each the that  meetings  Among  Gram to  the  Sarkar, be  functions  Sarkar  thought  that  the  its  could  through  being  run  of  Mantala  members  the  Although  some  of  e f f i c i e n t l y ,  stated  since  that  the  in  village  improvement.  interviewed  Colipur  functions. the  from  organizing  Gram  no  office  separate  the  by  two  years.  seemed  by  claimed  only  to  the  only not  a  be  night  Mantala council  the  had  villagers  they  The  who  could  not  majority  of  living  conditions  establishment  of  Gram  better  in  village.  performing  more  two  of  portfolios  leaders  education  Gram  instance  in  of  his  days.  the  was  kept held  the  the  in  informed  l i s t  with  other  functions.  were  changed the  of  not  a  assigned  adult  few  copybook  regularly,  period  the  at a  Sarkar  specific  held  a  portfolios  disputes  of  comment its  the  functions  only  for  a  local  was  Although  were  over  half  available  failed  Sarkar  in were  coincide  held.  attempts for  There  always  Most  and  villagers  showed  have  some  accomplishment. initiated,  not  of  meetings  Sarkar.  recorded  l i s t  the  and  which  Gram  actually  of  the  Sarkar for  The  three local was the  fared village  under  had  study  bodies. not  marginally  and The  completed  council,  and  the  in  the  highest  number  therefore, basic  office  required  function  Colipur. of  of  There the  of was  Union  209  Parishad  was  used  Gram P r a d h a n , among  the  knowledge  the  duties  and  But  regarding  what  and r e c o r d s  Member-Secretary  Over  a  scale  third  c o n s i d e r e d the  new  had  about  idea  they  of  they  functions.  Sarkar  successful  digging  and  been a  night  villagers  witnessed  Sarkar.  In  new  institution In  of  has  Rainagar,  p e r f o r m some of but  no change  terms  found at  the  printed  and  its  following  it  seems t h a t  office the of  rented  the  at  for the  for  which  members.  they  were e x p e c t e d t o p e r f o r m f o r n o t an  the  Colipur  Another  third  and t h e r e f o r e , who  could  thought  Gram  The  i n t r o d u c t i o n of  it  was a b l e  was e s t a b l i s h e d . which  selected  the  to All the  of Gram S a r k a r  t h e members c o u l d be  Official  stationery  names,  the  Gram  functions,  Gram S a r k a r  The members were g e n e r a l l y  is  in  accomplishments.  most of  t h e Gram P r a d h a n ,  5  canal-  i n c l u d e d the  the  Since Rainagar  functions.  use a s t h e o f f i c e  evenings.  letterhead  to  only  meeting  villagers,  in the  f o r Gram S a r k a r  designated  however,  functions  the  members  the  Colipur.  to  and d e p a r t m e n t s  as  The and  in C o l i p u r could c i t e  in  the  its  members  failed  A room was  According  The  performing i t s  one member was p r e s e n t  council.  were w a i t i n g  any  do.  filed,  t o be a f a i l u r e .  school  allocated  to  were not  expected functions  not comment on i t s had  expected  Gram S a r k a r  institution its  were  recording  the  were  the  t h e members d e n i e d h a v i n g  the meetings  before  of  According to  responsibilities  many of  said that  on a f u l l  no  occasional meetings.  members.  proceedings  operate  for  qualifications  Member-Secretary aware o f  was  the  and  functions  new c o u n c i l .  agricultural  village,  extensive  210  efforts  to  increase  the v i l l a g e r s order  and members of Gram S a r k a r  situation  locally  in  existing  f o o d p r o d u c t i o n were not  i n c r e a s i n g numbers.  for  these  council  d i d some work, and  and  observed,  period  other  functions  official  second  visible.  was  perform  be  As  in  education of  the  its  the  three  villages  Gram  other  for  felt  results  got I  for  that the  a the new  government  failure  and added t h a t  mass  she  only  A high  the  new  villages  because  time.  the  distributed  survived  performed  functions,  to the  before  Gram S a r k a r  same r e a s o n  the  were  were  the  and  on  successful,  planning  -allowed adequate  the  of  Gram  by t h e  end of  have  become  would  the  In  slim. in  organized  meetings,  finalized.  institution.  under  study,  t o p e r f o r m more f u n c t i o n s  was w e l l  had  manifest  not  year,  mobilization  was  adult  third  was a b l e  At  projects  family  made  in which  Contraceptives  or  The i n s t i t u t i o n held.  not  very  Members  could  areas  law  6  Among Rainagar  for  were  Both  adjudicated  gave c r e d i t  other  village.  time.  i n Dhaka gave to  of  the  of  The  planning.  schools  short  the  Some r e p a i r s  but was not  charge  left  night  institution  works.  family  by t h e member i n married  the  had i m p r o v e d and d i s p u t e s were b e i n g  Sarkar  Sarkar  agreed that  r o a d s and a number of v i l l a g e r s  literacy  undertaken.  A  local  the  high  village  low  level  the  interest  of  the  regular  degree to  of  and t h e  by  in  two. were  d i s c u s s e d and  utilize  political  displayed  other  meetings  were  m e e t i n g s were r a r e  An e x t r e m e l y little  than  problems  relatively  prepared Mantala,  and  Gram S a r k a r  political the  attendance  mobilization the  new  was  villagers  21 1  toward  the  local  Colipur  were a t t e n d e d by some v i l l a g e r s  The r e c o r d s living  of  institution.  the performance  conditions  Thus v a r y i n g Gram S a r k a r  in Mantala  degrees in  the  of  of  The m e e t i n g s of as w e l l as  and C o l i p u r were not the  in  some members.  assigned functions  readiness affected  three  Gram S a r k a r  to  improve  impressive.  performance  of  villages.  PERSONNEL The  background, q u a l i f i c a t i o n s ,  S a r k a r members d i f f e r e d should  in  the  be c o m p a r e d , and t h e i r  the  new c o u n c i l s  of  local  extent,  in d i f f e r e n t  government by  the  three  villages.  impact  on t h e  villages  institutions  quality  of  and e x p e r i e n c e  relative The  operating  Gram  factors  success  of  character  determined,  personnel  the  These  assessed.  is  of  to a  large  the  local  counc i I s . Mantala to the  creation  no e x p e r i e n c e local  had n e v e r of  of  Gram S a r k a r  participating  institutions.  e x p e r i e n c e w i t h the involved  they  A  few  either  government  As a r e s u l t ,  in,  or p r o v i d i n g  of  the  institution the  leadership  villagers  either  his  loyal  who  d i d not  or were d e l i b e r a t e l y  s u p p o r t e r s or  and n e v e r  decisions.  showed up a t  so t o t a l l y Some of  meetings.  prior  villagers  want  as  to  for,  get the  members  apathetic them  had  had some  e x c l u d e d by  The p e o p l e p i c k e d by t h e Gram P r a d h a n  would not q u e s t i o n h i s  interested  .  Union P a r i s h a d ,  w i t h Gram S a r k a r ,  Gram P r a d h a n . were  had a l o c a l  were  that not  212  Five  out  interviewed  of  the  in Mantala  name, and two o t h e r s Gram Pradhan Secretary, to c l a s s  ten.  and l a c k  of  had two t o  three  On t h e w h o l e ,  of  in  active  members  years  the  local  of  of  seven.  low  government  were  write  his  schooling.  schooling,  extremely  participation  who  one c o u l d o n l y  s c h o o l up t o c l a s s  had t h e most y e a r s  experience  possibility  Gram S a r k a r  were i l l i t e r a t e ;  had a t t e n d e d who  ten  The  The Member-  had s t u d i e d up  level  severely  of  literacy  reduced  by Gram S a r k a r  the  members  in  Mantala. The a v e r a g e the  sixty  year  contravention  age of M a n t a l a ' s  o l d Gram P r a d h a n , of  the  rule  Gram S a r k a r was  that  thirty-three  a  o l d , two members aged  were  In  government, them  was  ever  a half  families  ran  local  and  with  the  and  challenge  of  of  the  more  small  his  land,  land  farmers  the  neither  of  and t h e  than  were  belonged any  and t h e  way,  owning  others  of  to the  landless  ineffective.  i n an a u t h o r i t a r i a n  on  The Gram  and t h e  members  decisions.  had h o u s e d t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d the v i l l a g e r s  government  of  farmers  and t h e M e m b e r - S e c r e t a r y owned  least  twenty-two  instructions  t h e members were s m a l l acres  In  or a s k e d t o p e r f o r m any  r e n d e r e d Gram S a r k a r  the c o u n c i l  Colipur some  twenty  the meetings  three  The d e p e n d e n c e of  c o u l d not  and  of  to  families,  wealthy  Pradhan  acre  to  The Gram P r a d h a n  wealthy  others. the  called  About h a l f  landless. the  accordance  years.  two women were s e l e c t e d a s members, but  functions. between  7  excluding  member had t o be a t  twenty-five years selected.  members,  were f a m i l i a r  institutions.  office  for  w i t h the  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d  some  time,  operation members  of  were  213  dominated brother,  by  their  Chairman  t h e Gram P r a d h a n .  picked  by  include  representation  council, or  all  its  from a l l  too,  were  meetings  attendance  objection  was  to h i s  The a v e r a g e  for  primary  age of  affairs  local  other  member  but he was  members  as the  was  were  In  held, a  and  result,  d i d not  face  any  farmer All  the  owned more l a n d and were  leaders  to  in Mantala  those  the  and  the  village affairs  now and was  the  or  families.  the v i l l a g e .  had two  experience One ago,  in  the  F i v e of members  the were  One member was a boatman  Member-Secretary engaged  had  included  female  or had  a l o n g time  t h e members owned s m a l l  also  five  guards.  consent.  two  were,  Gram Pradhan  had some p r e v i o u s  in v i l l a g e  and  Gram S a r k a r  The l o c a l  and  knowledge  farmers  as  The M e m b e r - S e c r e t a r y  commander of  his  from s m a l l  outside  supporters  were r a r e l y As  to new  authority.  illiterate  members  involved  without  Gram P r a d h a n ,  services  comparison  s e v e n and t e n .  as w e l l as a f a r m e r . The  in  The Gram P r a d h a n  members were s m a l l housewives  his  selected  years.  too o l d to p a r t i c i p a t e  Gram S a r k a r  i n the  loyal  informed.  personnel  Three  8  s t u d i e d up t o c l a s s  in  Chairman's  to challenge  forty-six  the  education.  degrees.  the v i l l a g e  and t h e Gram Pradhan  the  older  Two of  bachelor  were  Though he a t t e m p t e d  of  were not  his  decisions.  much  Rainagar.  the  over  t h e Gram S a r k a r  t h e Gram S a r k a r  slim,  members i n C o l i p u r was therefore,  areas  unlikely  members and t h e v i l l a g e r s  the  Chairman.  members were e i t h e r who  a l s o had i n f l u e n c e  The members of  the Union P a r i s h a d  others  Colipur,  who  plots  of  and two o t h e r in  business  The membership o f  or  land.  members other  C o l i p u r ' s Gram  214  Sarkar  was  t h u s composed of  The p e r s o n n e l different  as  people with varied  involved  there  in  Gram S a r k a r  were no f a r m e r s  t e n members who were i n t e r v i e w e d the  employed  J u t e and Sugar  also  the  owned a  businessmen,  one  members d i d not professor up  before  their  jobs  The a v e r a g e  was  hold  Two  The  or  The  Manual p u b l i s h e d by t h e  female below  class  nine  other and  Certificate  degrees.  t h e Gram P r a d h a n close there  to  and  t h e members i n affairs  through  members were  and  the  time  two a  female college  t h e members new  Mill  gave  institution.  Gram P r a d h a n  were b o t h  was  twenty-two  stipulated  in  the  t h e members d i d  not  lands.  were  more  educated  than  F o u r members had s t u d i e d up t o  four  had two m a s t e r s  an u r b a n c e n t r e  social  a  others  had  Higher  Secondary  T h r e e members were commerce g r a d u a t e s ,  were o p p o r t u n i t i e s  various  the  or b a r r e n  two v i l l a g e s . ten,  the  Most of  Gram S a r k a r members i n R a i n a g a r in the  for  members  government.  were  full  was  None of  t h e minimum age  some owned s m a l l p l o t s  those  but  Gram Pradhan  t h e members e x c l u d i n g  years.  two  were  the  Three  One employee of  puller,  b u s i n e s s e s t o work  F i v e of  and  members  .  were  service.  Rajshahi  Mills.  rickshaw  jobs.  y e a r s o l d , and t h e r e f o r e  own l a n d ;  of  j o i n i n g Gram S a r k a r  age of  thirty-five  store. a  Rainagar  i n the c o u n c i l .  University  furniture  in  were engaged i n  members s e r v e d a t in  backgrounds.  and s e v e r a l  for  the  political  Rainagar local  i n f o r m e d of  degrees.  had social  Because  educational  villagers  to  activities. previous  participate  experience  of  in  in of  village  organizations.  the  is  institutions,  About t w o - t h i r d s  and c u l t u r a l  the meetings  Rainagar  and  Gram S a r k a r  The and  215  most  of  them  attended  regularly  and  tried  to  fulfill  their  responsibi1i ties. In  comparing the  villages, Mantala small In  a number of  landless  Colipur,  farmers  the  as  c a n be made. because  working  g r o u p was composed  composed of and  and  none  government  affairs.  None  influences.  members  influence.  village  affairs  averages  than  better  educated.  Most and  average to  from t h e  younger of  of  leaders  The  on a v e r a g e ,  cultural  low  level  experience of  the  them  Mantala  political  of  urban leaders  Some  participated  or  the  leaders  Rainagar.  i n c l u s i o n of  had  of  of  and were e x p o s e d t o  age of  leaders  In  village to  Mantala.  had  Gram S a r k a r  than  exposure  the v i l l a g e  the  The  that  were  a professor.  among t h e Gram S a r k a r  compared  the c o u n c i l .  There  management any  leadership  literacy  before.  resulted  the  middle  of . t h e  had  Two of  i n C o l i p u r as  service. was  were  was a m i d d l e  leaders  but h i g h e r  were,  social,  or  had worked o u t s i d e  external  members i n  of  and  The R a i n a g a r  Gram P r a d h a n  in  leader.  support  t h e members had p r e v i o u s  the  low,  the  three  them  small  The Gram P r a d h a n  family.  institutions of  of  members had an e x t r e m e l y  of  The l e v e l  i n C o l i p u r was  higher  the  the  The members  most  both  people employed in  t h e Gram S a r k a r  education  higher  Bhuiya  in  under a t r a d i t i o n a l of  businessmen.  powerful  businessmen  Mantala,  the  observations  who was a l s o a b u s i n e s s m a n and had  was m o s t l y  local  Gram S a r k a r  farmers  w e l l as  traditionally  some  of  were a homogeneous g r o u p , or  farmer  personnel  o l d and  leaders  in  in was The  inactive Rainagar  i n C o l i p u r , and much  previous  activities  and  experience  of  demonstrated  216  better  u n d e r s t a n d i n g of  A l t h o u g h the Mantala, that  only  called three  Awami  one  political  whichever  said  it  new  institution's  League  member  party.  neutral. others  the  (AL)  When  interviewed,  always s u p p o r t e d the  they  Some Gram S a r k a r the  at  times.  s a i d he s u p p o r t e d t h e Another  he s a i d ,  Four  i n c l u d i n g t h e Gram P r a d h a n  support  the  BNP.  In  s t a t e d more c l e a r l y . were the  previous BNP.  Rainagar,  become n e u t r a l Gram S a r k a r ,  now. but  members  while  of  claimed  became to  always  join  the  AL  of  the  office. t h e AL  affiliations Gram  to  were  Pradhan joined  Awami  Party  supporter  has  joining  the  before  a supporter  have  ruling  t h e AL who had  former  were  member  the  left  from t h e N a t i o n a l  another  neutral  One of  In  they  into  s a i d they  One member was n e u t r a l later  time  get  including  and w o r k e r s  party,  themselves  t h e NAP-M t o  the p o l i t i c a l  F i v e members  (NAP-M)  the  favour  would n e v e r  One member c r o s s e d o v e r  [pro-Moscow]  other  former  supporters  in  member l e f t  BNP b e c a u s e , leaders  the  at  be  (BNP).  previously.  BNP b e c a u s e he was  Gram S a r k a r  Party  of  while  ruling  were p o l i t i c a l l y  Two members were n e u t r a l had s u p p o r t e d t h e AL  to  were n e u t r a l  Bangladesh N a t i o n a l i s t  in  supporter  members c l a i m e d  they  base  preferred  that  f o u r members c l a i m e d t h a t  party.  he  members s a i d t h e y  was.  but  strong  c l a i m e d t o be a f o r m e r  Colipur,  interviewed,  a  Two o t h e r  t o be s u p p o r t e r s of  all  had  functions.  the  BNP.  remained  Three  politically  neutral. In support Mantala,  Rainagar, for  the  the  most  political majority  of  the  party  members  that  openly  created  of Gram S a r k a r  stated  Gram S a r k a r .  members t r i e d  to  their In  express  217  their  neutrality  came t o p o w e r . two  or d e m o n s t r a t e Most of  political  parties,  them d i d not  villages  reflects  Rainagar,  the  experienced  know t h e BNP.  any p a r t y  Colipur  9  that  name of more  f a v o u r e d by a b o u t h a l f  their  village  a higher  town  government.  was  inexperienced leaders  leader,  but  than  remained of  the  in  Gram  t h e weakness  institution  Gram S a r k a r  in  degrees  preparedness.  relatively in  rate  of  task  getting  even  set  and  o r g a n i z i n g and mobilization  of  the  to a  from  the  illiterate  and  up a w o r k i n g  the middle range,  the Union P a r i s h a d  three  and p r o x i m i t y  had  at  other  of  assistance  contrast,  the  educated  Political  participation  in  in  of  more  the  institutions.  who c o u l d not  Colipur,  p r e d o m i n a n c e of  with  useful  Mantala,  institution.  differing  fared better  government  produced  district  t h e p e r s o n n e l of  leaders  running l o c a l  the  BNP  for  members.  A c o m p a r i s o n of i  had  support  t h e AL and t h e  the m i d d l e range w i t h the Sarkar  their  had an  Gram S a r k a r  local  experienced members  and  Chairman r e n d e r e d t h e  new  ineffective.  RELATIONS WITH THE UNION PARISHAD AND THE GOVERNMENT The  creation  administering apprehension government and  the  of  Gram S a r k a r  village-level in  most  and i t s  development  quarters.  activities  The p r e v i o u s l y  s y s t e m had t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d villages  proposed function  at  the  were a d m i n i s t e r e d under t h e  existing lowest  of  raised local level,  l e a d e r s h i p of  the  218  Union P a r i s h a d these  two  Chairman. institutions  Theoretically, villages, In  reality,  It  was  were  in  of  The  local  One of  the of in  to  the  build  villages  belonging in the  villages  to the of  and t h e i r  contacts  Mantala w h i c h had i t s  links  government  authority  years. over  on  village after  by  these  and t h u s  the  most  in  the  relationship  As a r e s u l t ,  not  the  Parishads  The g o v e r n m e n t ,  always  establishment the  work  the in  The i n t e n t  was  to  development.  local the  by  village.  of  sense  participants of  examining in  and t h e  jurisdiction  i n an a d j a c e n t  a  The p r o x i m i t y  and o f f i c i a l s leaders  i n Dhaka and  instill  and make them u s e f u l  offices  had been under  of Gram S a r k a r  government  c a n be u n d e r s t o o d  w i t h the  office  The U n i o n  positions  were p e r c e i v e d  could  between  national  government  presence  unions.  ambitious  in t h e i r  the  another.  villagers,  of  Union  and Gram S a r k a r .  Bangladesh.  process  the  control  The  guidelines  p u r p o s e s b e h i n d the  the  their  new c o u n c i l s .  of  f o r many  by p o l i t i c a l l y  institutions  closer  of  charge  the v i l l a g e s  of  demarcated.  much more c o m p l e x .  themselves  Union Parishad  government  in  institution.  adequate  functions  would a d m i n i s t e r  to undermine t h e i r  d i d not p r o v i d e the  be  Gram S a r k a r s  d i s l i k e d the  c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h one  was  new  t h e most p a r t ,  as an a t t e m p t  between  to  was  and  clearly  them t o withdraw  the  efforts.  leaders  rules,  for  who had e s t a b l i s h e d  leaders  were  situation  favour  not  Union P a r i s h a d s  easy  for  prolonged  union  were  have been a d m i n i s t e r i n g  run,  leaders  two  the  not  villages  jurisdictions  Gram S a r k a r s  while the  Parishads  The  the  the  villages,  villagers.  a Union The  the  Parishad  creation  of  219  the  new c o u n c i l s , w i t h o u t  duties,  resulted  leaders their  in d i s t r u s t  considered  authority.  elected  them  therefore,  latter  They f e l t  as  of  be a new s e t  of  that  claim  leaders  carrying  leaders, they of  on t h e  received Mantala  Dulalpur  the  new  Gram S a r k a r  in  The  funds  projects,  local  Obviously, Parishad  Sarkar  the  for  of as  They h a d ,  leadership.  The  their  the  there  was g o i n g  of M a n t a l a  duties.  to  t o be h o n e s t  The Gram S a r k a r  with  leaders.  the  treatment  The Gram  Union P a r i s h a d in the  the  leaders  Pradhan  Chairman  way  of  of  successful  c o o p e r a t e w i t h the  leaders  allocating a  relationship  Gram S a r k a r  council  funds.  added t o t h e c o m p l i c a t i o n s t h a t  the  institutions.  viewed  leaders  and d i d not  distrust  manifest  for  had  institution. mutual  already  union  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d  from t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d that  Parishad  by a m e e t i n g d i d not g i v e  u n i o n was p l a c i n g o b s t r u c t i o n s  The  favour  local  h a n d , were not happy  complained  o p e r a t i o n of of  other  out  of  and  undermining  to p u b l i c o f f i c e s .  for Mantala.  or  of  the  residents  Nevertheless,  t h e Gram S a r k a r  Union  the  over  d i d not c o n s i d e r capable  The  at  leaders  legitimacy.  jurisdiction  t o be an a t t e m p t  representatives  Gram S a r k a r  equivalent  and c o n f u s i o n .  Gram S a r k a r  legitimate  selection  p r o p e r d e f i n i t i o n of  The  was  between  expected to  had  to  depend  Union P a r i s h a d  f u n d s t o t h e Gram S a r k a r ,  challenge  to  their  leaders  and  many v i l l a g e r s  in  two  its  own  Mantala.  on t h e were  Since  Union  not  w h i c h was  leadership.  c o u l d not d e m o n s t r a t e any a c h i e v e m e n t s  Union P a r i s h a d  in  entirely leaders  the  raise  which proved i m p o s s i b l e  were  in  already the  Gram  Mantala,  the  thought  that  it  was  220  not  needed  i n the v i l l a g e ,  as  effectively  immediately had  been  easily  t o t h e Gram  government  thought  half  the  been  links  Union  these links did  through In  who  were  and  came  about  village  was  t h e two  Gram  household.  Due  to  relationship  between  help.  adjust  years,  any  leaders  elite  in  leaders  of l o c a l  the  not  nearby  Sarkar to  The  no  rulers in  to the centre  same  of  Union  office  circumstances, hostile  and use  had almost  institutions the  Parishad  government  any c l o s e r  from  when  developed  former  prevailing was  had  for  government  two  the Union  Gram  local  the  only  Mantala's  the control  operated  came  the  Over  government  at the centre.  not brought  regularly  official.  they  The v i l l a g e  a r e no  Sarkar  stationed  Sarkar.  the  There  two  resides  i t sleaders  between  the  official  Gram  Since  o f Gram  Sarkar  of  to the v i l l a g e  that  officials  political  concerned  the l i n k s  met  i t impossible  the institution  Parishad  needed  relations  the ruling  Colipur,  this which  not  i n t e r v i e w e d had not seen  to i t sbenefit.  The  Thus,  could  government  or thought  villagers  P a r i s h a d made  n o t seem  was  the o t h e r s had never  hostile  with  decades,  of. the  officials  the government  links  Mantala.  a n d no  operating for several  The  just  institution,  t o the government.  quarter  i n the v i l l a g e ,  with  town.  a  government  influential  had  the  i n Mantala  the v i l l a g e r s  officials  village  Only  there;  several  could  Parishad.  government  of the problem  the  offices  worked  functions  Sarkar.  and  that  these  by t h e U n i o n  of l o c a l for  dimension  the v i l l a g e .  and  level  established  institutions  in  be p e r f o r m e d  higher  Another  and that  and the  in Colipur.  221  Instead,  the  older  patronized  the  Pradhan  the  was  new  of  the  to h i s  d e c i s i o n s on most  contribute other  the  to  the  not  the  to  to  be  Sarkar  d i d not  Union P a r i s h a d c h a n n e l i n g of put  The Gram  Union P a r i s h a d with  Chairman.  the  indirect  he was c a r e f u l that  his  not  personal the  to  Gram S a r k a r functions  and  for  who  h e l p and  resided 1 0  existence,  in  continued  all  its  projects  role or  leaders  in  a  the not The  Colipur did  to  consult  was not  properly  local  projects  by w o r k i n g  initiating  funds through the Union P a r i s h a d  did  The v i l l a g e r s  S i n c e Gram S a r k a r  to a s s e r t  these  the Union P a r i s h a d  deferred  latter.  and c o n d u c t e d by t h e U n i o n P a r i s h a d .  in  extend  between  leaders by t h e  t o be u s e l e s s .  leaders.  try  new  l e a d e r s h i p c o u l d be  relationship  Union P a r i s h a d  p e r i o d of  even  the  matters.  new l e a d e r s  initiated  leaders.  members r e c i p r o c a t e d  Gram S a r k a r  its  Chairman  C h a i r m a n , who t r e a t e d  p e r f o r m a n c e of  the  Union P a r i s h a d  o r g a n i z e d over  the  way  cordial  the  members of  turn  a  C h a i r m a n and  considered  the  such  its  selected  But  The Gram S a r k a r  Union P a r i s h a d  of  Union P a r i s h a d  in  However,  and  were  own c r e a t i o n .  activities  challenged.  brother  Gram S a r k a r  c o u n c i l as h i s its  Gram S a r k a r  younger  The members of approval  and more e x p e r i e n c e d U n i o n P a r i s h a d  for  commanding  its such  had  The Gram with  the  own.  The  projects  position  in  f o r m e r Member of  the  Colipur. Since Provincial interest have  in  Colipur  was  A s s e m b l y and setting  affected  the  the AL  home leader,  up a base political  for  the  of  a  the  government  BNP t h e r e .  alignments  in  had  some  T h i s would D h a k a , but  not  could  222  certainly  help  parliamentary  the  ruling  elections.  leaders  said  that  helped  the  villagers.  villagers appears On t h e few  made  the  family  the  w i t h the  government.  C h a i r m a n and h i s  links In  to  their  Rainagar,  own  political  aspirant  leadership. harmony, members Sarkar  members,  off  The new  two  i m p r e s s i n g the distribution  in  a  they had  thana  It  village. met o n l y  a  established  level,  did  not  connections.  these  people d i d  their  protege,  two  The  factions not  had live  the  Gram P r a d h a n ,  l e a d e r s h i p was  council  was  and r e p l a c e thus  village leaders in  being  Union  utilized  in  conflict  used  the p r e v i o u s could  not  the  Union  where  Rainagar  by  by  The Gram up  village  .  two e x c e p t i o n s , were keen t o p e r f o r m  villagers relief  with  plans  appeared  visible  materials  to  services,  be such  and t h e a d j u d i c a t i o n  in  Parishad  setting  in the  a  village work  for a long time.  members t o work  Gram S a r k a r ' s  of  the  into  the  thirty  statement.  split  institutions  t o a good s t a r t  w i t h one or  the  and  advantage.  and o r g a n i z i n g i t s  The  and  to c h a l l e n g e  especially  got  But  brother,  had been a c c e p t e d a s  office  duties.  The  Colipur  approximately  similar  the Union P a r i s h a d  w i t h t h e Gram S a r k a r .  to  similar  at  t o have  permanently,  came of  and  t w e l v e Gram S a r k a r  C h a i r m a n , who  officials  leaders  of  seldom v i s i t e d  i n C o l i p u r w h i c h was  village  Parishad the  other  a  presidential  came t o C o l i p u r ,  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d government  out  out  officials  o c c a s i o n s when t h e y  w i t h the  some l i n k s in  government  the  officials  who were i n t e r v i e w e d  rare  wealthy  government  in  three  one  that  encourage  Only  Only  leaders.  links  party  an The  their  aimed as of  at the  local  223  disputes. unit  Moreover,  of  the  Gram S a r k a r  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  r u l i n g party  to operate  became  apprehensive  the  institution.  new  to  the  His  l e a d e r s h i p of  connections  carrying  out  established  work  was  than  for  in  number  by making Gram S a r k a r  is  party  of  amidst  an  it  is  factional results  and  to  in the  ruling  able  t o p e r s u a d e more government  of  claim  opposition  The  of  did  interest  showing  of  the the  to a  in  of not  However,  responsible  the  the  the  local  were p r o b a b l y a national  town of  great  Rainagar  village  leader.  officials ready  and  to  to v i s i t  the  the  of  working  villagers  of  both  to was  village,  participate Two-thirds  a  wanted  The Gram P r a d h a n  village,  of  ruling  defection  BNP was an a d v a n t a g e  programme.  two-thirds  the  Rajshahi  and t h e  officials  about  for  The BNP d e f i n i t e l y  S a r k a r members had o b s e r v e d government and  his  the achievements  constituency  close  the  implementation  discredit  successfully  struggles.  successful  from t h e AL t o  officials  leaders  Union P a r i s h a d  was  for  successful.  in  the  limited  institutions.  t o e s t a b l i s h a support base  and t h e  But  problems.  important  educational  party  useful  the  local  funds  Colipur.  since  t h e Gram P r a d h a n  were  and  Gram S a r k a r ' s more  Rainagar  district  to  to e s t a b l i s h  projects.  to demonstrate  or  an o p p o r t u n i t y  the v i l l a g e  solving  forgotten  in Mantala  political  in  the  The U n i o n P a r i s h a d  effort  BNP  The Gram S a r k a r  determination extent  the  local  leaders  together  village  made e v e r y Rainagar  some  Gram S a r k a r .  efficiently.  with  to  and c o u l d p r o b a b l y a r r a n g e  and w a i t e d f o r  The Gram Pradhan  had l i n k s  in  the  the  Gram  in  the  who  were  224  interviewed  said  visits  government  by  community a n d , village of  that  officials  though t h i s  by  signi f icance.  an  important  light  the  aspect  the  developed. their  Parishad  d i d not  of  in  displace  leader  able  its  to d i c t a t e  latter  peri-urban  prove  that  the  i n c r e a s e d number bears  and t h e U n i o n  was o v e r l o o k e d  that  the  some  the  feelings  different  was  The of  In  t h e Gram S a r k a r  t o d e v e l o p as an  wanted  determined  was one of  t o overshadow to  prove  to  arise  leaders  of  to  In  veiled an  The U n i o n  Colipur,  under c o n t r o l T h e r e was  independent  be  shaped  Mantala,  was  thus  no  body.  The  the Union P a r i s h a d , ineffectiveness  the  and  local  open h o s t i l i t y .  the  both  relationship  leadership.  in  with  was p e r c e i v e d as  w i t h Gram S a r k a r .  had t h e Gram S a r k a r  new  not a d j u s t e d  and a t t i t u d e s  areas.  the Union P a r i s h a d  Parishad  i n d e s i g n i n g the  were l i k e l y  nature  personal  in Rainagar  leaders was  in a  Rainagar  f o r m a t i o n and o p e r a t i o n .  Gram S a r k a r  The s i t u a t i o n  Gram S a r k a r  Gram S a r k a r .  cooperate  Union P a r i s h a d  for  to  the  the Union P a r i s h a d  d e v e l o p e d because to  Sarkar  of  As a r e s u l t ,  attempt  scope  that  were u n s u r e of  interaction  hostility  government,  officials  circumstances  introduction  institutions  the  between  The r o l e  of  to  Frequent  1 1  institution. the  can be e x p e c t e d  d o e s not c o n c l u s i v e l y  government  The r e l a t i o n s h i p is  officials  had come c l o s e r  visits  d i d come t o R a i n a g a r .  Gram  and  the  of  the  former. Proximity Mantala visited  to  and C o l i p u r Rainagar  the  government  has  t h r o u g h Gram S a r k a r . more f r e q u e n t l y ,  not  been d e v e l o p e d  Government  p r o b a b l y because  in  officials the  village  225  was c l o s e already  to  the  town and e a s i l y  brought Rainagar  other  villages.  cannot  be awarded  accessible.  closer  Therefore, t o Gram  to  the  These  factors  government  the c r e d i t  for  this  have  than  most  accomplishment  Sarkar.  AN OVERVIEW A summary r e v i e w indicates new  that  The  of  seemed, had  abolition had  no  development impression  the  of  Some few b r i c k But  there  conditions  almost  for  the  village; a short  development structures  hardly  the  village. it  time  was it  impact  same.  any  the  families  and  there There  government left  no  from  Isolation  in  the from  broken.  in C o l i p u r . within  of Gram S a r k a r ,  Deeper  Mantala.  change.  Gram S a r k a r  supply  low  difference.  times,  for  was not  changes.  big  imposed on M a n t a l a  had t a k e n p l a c e  was no v i s i b l e  in  three  f a d e d away.  therefore,  the  same and t h e  colonial  by  from  indirect  made  resources  and e l e c t r i c  remained the  of  villages  improvement;  continued  no need or demand  the  the c o u n t r y ,  visible  remained the  since  of  three  no b e n e f i t  as w e l l as  under c o n t r o l  little  the  no  affairs  of Gram S a r k a r  works on  saw  life  local  investment  and w i t h i n  rest  in  still  changed  moreover,  been  centre,  was  too,  of  in  absolutely  had some d i r e c t  participation  Mantala  received  and a m e n i t i e s  village  and t h e  Gram S a r k a r  Colipur,  Rainagar  quality  level The  Mantala  institution.  meanwhile,  of  T h e r e were a the  village.  and t h e  investigation,  living  however,  226  revealed  some  powerful to  The  f a m i l y had p r e p a r e d  rise  from  changes.  to  prominence.  t h e way  Although  one f a m i l y , t h e change was  were  more  aware  exposed t o urban  of  the  influence. totally  brought  other areas  i n from  conducted  business  socio-economic marginally The  distribution  of  became  brought  in  of  local  problems,  of  Gram  from  Sarkar  Being  more  conscious  their  close  links  group with  successful  result Gram  in  in  these  Sarkar  Rainagar.  was  to  of v i l l a g e r s .  and in  in  were  were aware  educated  group  organizing local  satisfy  r e q u i r e d the a  relatively  They were a b l e t o u t i l i z e  t h e government t h r o u g h two  The  resources  The v i l l a g e r s  capable  some r e s u l t s  Rainagar,  of  p e r c e i v e d , and e x t e r n a l  successful  Compared t o t h e o t h e r  being  were employed o r  a p e r i - u r b a n community, R a i n a g a r  leaders to provide  resources  some were  b e c a u s e most economic  were  Colipur  and had been  economic  of  prominent  and a r e l a t i v e l y  leaders  in  were  i n Mantala.  o u t s i d e the v i l l a g e .  local  leaders.  success  than  more  important  People  As an i n d i r e c t  the  leaders  leaders, again,  where t h e v i l l a g e r s  power c o u l d be c l e a r l y  linkages  government.  t h e new  traditionally  g r o u p of  w i t h i n the v i l l a g e ;  in Colipur were  f o r a new  significant.  transactions.  changes  the  Increasingly,  from  changes,  better  in  problems of the v i l l a g e  were n o t coming  more  cleavage  villages, spite  district Gram  political  Sarkar  of a s t r o n g  was  factional  cleavage. Why  d i d t h e same i n s t i t u t i o n  three v i l l a g e s ?  yield  The e x p l a n a t i o n may  among t h e v i l l a g e s .  Rainagar  was  different  be f o u n d  results  i n the  i n the d i f f e r e n c e s  t h e most m o b i l i z e d  among  the  227  three.  C o l i p u r was  control  of  in  the  the  had  developed local  wealthier  past,  family  was  split around  control  villagers.  In  and  were a l m o s t Rainagar,  into  two,  new not  one  affect  bodies.  of  cannot extent  population  culture,  only  north-western  similar in  not  similar  in  in Mantala the  village  important.  be  and  regions.  at  links  between  rest  of  country  the  R a i n a g a r was  the  links,  in  r e g i o n a l d i f f e r e n c e s on  the  but  small of  The  The  t i m e of  level  government a  crops.  The  is  slightly  climate, are  regional an  fairly and  villages  considered  seem  religion  and  of  not  has  i s located  other  government  do  local  language,  I t seems t h a t  more  they  country,  extremities  t o be  Colipur?  other  The  p e r f o r m a n c e of  made Gram S a r k a r or  from  while  isolated,  respects.  enough  b a t t l e for  leaders  some  which Rainagar  differences in local  What, t h e n , than  and  terms  patterns  extensive  explaining  had  had  two  v a r i a t i o n s in climate in  i n most o t h e r  virtually  is  region  the  village  constant.  the  in  small  in crop  w e l l as  is a relatively  homogenous and  was  i n the  under  control.  the  s i n g l e dominant  challenges  factions  for  under  alignments  winners  strong  location  to a great  The  Colipur  interaction  still  dominated the  political  large  non-existent.  Bangladesh  different  face  another  outcome of Gram S a r k a r to  and  government a s  effect  Mantala,  In C o l i p u r , t h e  family.  Rainagar,  the  the  The  least.  a  and  f a m i l i e s t h a t had  the  did  competed w i t h Mantala  less mobilized,  but  located  variation  important  factor  performance.  successful  in  Rainagar  of m o b i l i z a t i o n  prevalent  i n t r o d u c t i o n o f Gram S a r k a r  a s t e p ahead of most  other  is  Bangladesh  228  villages  in  residence  of a  effect  on  this fair  the  institutions. in  the  access  other  were  the  Political  between R a i n a g a r  and  resistance  some r e s u l t s .  groups enabled  Rainagar  L a c k of  villages  made t h e with  to d i s c r e d i t Proximity  the  the  Rainagar,  no  district  town.  some  government  are  reflected Due  to  easy  nature  of  i n comparison  villagers  had  to  already  were r i s i n g . or  The  made  every  f o r g i n g of  better  leaders  lose  In  some p r o g r e s s  government and  the  Gram S a r k a r Linkages  the  funds  result  new  or  the  d o u b t , had The  were  able  to  external o f f i c i a l s  and  initiate  government totally  that  Gram S a r k a r s  Parishad  and  with  In  Union  leaders  with  Gram S a r k a r s  the  its officials.  more e x p e r i e n c e d  some  officials  dependent  the Union obstruct  in on  Parishad  their  local the the  leaders  operation  so  institution.  t o u r b a n c e n t r e s may up  the  local  urban  expectations  show  interaction  t o c o n t r o l the  speeds  the  educated  totally.  them t o s e c u r e  Union P a r i s h a d ,  that  of  and  had  leaders.  and  better  to  from  demonstrate  as  Rainagar  m o b i l i z a t i o n c o n t r i b u t e d to the  the  tried  village  their credentials.  leadership,  other  village  their  had  villagers  to e s t a b l i s h  projects.  in  Rainagar's  some c h a n g e s and  of  of  the  villages.  confidence  spite  of  leaders  Gram S a r k a r  links  the  operation  institutions  Rainagar,  effort  and  of  Some c o n s e q u e n c e s of m o b i l i z a t i o n  the  experienced  location  outsiders  composition  to e d u c a t i o n a l  i n the  The  number of  qualifications  Rainagar, those  respect.  process occurred  be  looked  upon a s  of m o b i l i z a t i o n . b e c a u s e of  establishment  The  a  changes i n  i t s closeness  of e d u c a t i o n a l  factor  to  a  institutions  229  near  the  while  village  Rainagar  less  than  two  Mantala.  Thus,  villages  seems  not  a  responded  divisions  and  danger  being  factors.  did  face  not  from  Parishad  sections  of  the  faction  assume l e a d e r s h i p .  The  services.  The  other  Union was  to a degree,  Rainagar,  on  hand, were c l e a r . the  the  group  villages were  not  in control under  The  group  of  led  no no  village  control  of  the  two  by  strength,  and  Parishad  Chairman  to  d i s o r g a n i z e d and  l e a d e r s h i p to  and  of  were  transfer  in c o n f l i c t  frequency  of e q u a l  thus  in Colipur.  were e n g a g e d  and  was  f o r a change other  centres the  leaders  Gram S a r k a r  satisfied,  than  to which  under c o m p l e t e  villagers  the  The  factions  faction  of  of  They were, t h e r e f o r e , i n  f a m i l y were not the  urban  town  cleavages  change.  The  allowed  him.  Mantala,  i n C o l i p u r was  wealthy  extent  alternative  Chairman.  by  t o urban  within  challenges  an  Bajitpur.  the  the  is  considered.  success.  d i s p l a c e d by  the Union  have  In  little  demonstrate  challenge  of  b e t t e r to changes  factions  t h e r e was  Gram S a r k a r  stronger  and  But  town, M a n t a l a  untouched  miles  towns must a l s o be  important  to  to  have  determining  with  pressure  seems  remained twenty  changes.  town  and  of Gram S a r k a r  provide  small  a c q u i r e urban c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s ,  prominent,  not  the  has  to  from R a j s h a h i  The  emerge as  the  from  these  i t a p p e a r s t h a t mere p r o x i m i t y  Cleavages,  leaders.  miles  to  factor.  interactions  of  three  C o l i p u r i s about  but  is  is  Mantala  Comilla,  alone  also contributed  miles  Nevertheless, influences.  has  under  the  The  no  pressure  a  new  two  in control  to  family  expectations  factional  could  of  the  patterns  in  major  factions  of Gram  Sarkar  230  had  to  demonstrate  its  efficiency,  or  lose  its  three v i l l a g e s ,  it  place  in  local  can  be  seen  government. From t h i s that  the  on t h e The  d e s c r i p t i o n of  s u c c e s s of  local  preparedness process  of  of  the  facilitated villagers like  office the  by t h e  may d e v e l o p . faction  are In  subordinated  it not  government  locally  results.  In  activity. no  But  factions  leaders  villages  in  where  dominant faction  possibility,  warfare which there are no  and  situations  the  the m i n o r i t y  and  villages  faction  two  is the  e q u a l power  Colipur,  factional  from In  the  The o t h e r  to  The p r o c e s s  as e x e m p l i f i e d i n  outright  prepared  feel  to  The  is not  precludes  many c a s e s  like  competition.  In  s i m p l y c o o p t new l o c a l these  government villages  if  reforms  in  excluded.  a n a l y z i n g the  Bangladesh,  displacement  by  conscious,  leadership.  N o t h i n g can be a c c o m p l i s h e d i n are  is  strength,  powerful  institutions.  In  is  it  matched i n  where t h e r e a r e  such l e a d e r s  of  changes  leadership.  approximately  and becomes a p a t h e t i c .  all  them,  local  extent,  institutions.  generally  leaders  and becomes c o m p l a c e n t ;  here,  Mantala  for with  evenly  illustrated local  basic  the  to demonstrate  one,  prevails  some  better  that  faction  poses a t h r e a t  factions  new  makes  the  aspirants  a  and c o m p e l s  receive  and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s .  pressures  and o t h e r  capability  is,  institutions  Rainagar,  to  to a large  developing alternative  more m o b i l i z e d a v i l l a g e new  depends,  making t h e p o p u l a t i o n  p r o v i d i n g scope f o r  receive  locality  mobilization  expanding l i t e r a c y , and  government  failure  indigenous  of  local  conditions  in  government the  villages  appear  to  be  231  the most only the  important  t h r e e out  of  variable.  Although  approximately  institution  to a c e r t a i n difficulty  imposed from t h e  degree. in  Success  villages  t h r o u g h m o b i l i z a t i o n and t h e urban  areas.  So f a r ,  the  not make p r o v i s i o n  to adjust  exist  villages.  among  villages are  are  the able  assigned.  villages negligible.  and  most centre  seems t o  that  the  will  the  country,  villages.  be s u c c e s s f u l  achieved  with  have become p r e p a r e d f o r  establishment plans to  of  formulated the  the  only  successful  only less  reforms  with  the  s u c h c h a n g e s do variations  that  a h a n d f u l of  functions  r e f o r m s do not of  links  for  numerous  As a r e s u l t ,  government number  in  encompasses  Bangladesh  be  t o a c c o m p l i s h some of  Local  study  68,000 v i l l a g e s  e x p l a n a t i o n c a n be e x t e n d e d t o  Any  this  that  t o u c h most of villages  the they the  remains  232  NOTES 1  A v i l l a g e l o c a t e d i n t h e p e r i p h e r y of t o w n s , a c o n s i d e r a b l e d e g r e e of u r b a n i n f l u e n c e .  2  The l a n d r i s e s o u t of t h e r i v e r bed i n t h e d r y s e a s o n , i s u s u a l l y t a k e n back by t h e r i v e r d u r i n g t h e m o n s o o n s .  3  J.P. Nettl, Political Mobilization: A Sociological A n a l y s i s Of Methods And C o n c e p t s ( L o n d o n : F a b e r and Faber, 1 9 6 7 ) , p. 32".  4  A Deputy Secretary at t h e M i n i s t r y of L o c a l G o v e r n m e n t , R u r a l Development and Cooperatives made this statement during an interview in h i s o f f i c e a t Dhaka on A p r i l 17, 1 982.  5  The M e m b e r - S e c r e t a r y of Gram S a r k a r s t a t e m e n t i n an i n t e r v i e w on May 4,  6  Interviewed at  7  The B a n g l a d e s h G a z e t t e , 9.  8  Primary education schooling.  9  One member of Gram S a r k a r i n M a n t a l a s a i d he s u p p o r t e d t h e P a k i s t a n D e m o c r a t i c P a r t y u n t i l 1975. In f a c t , the party had c e a s e d t o e x i s t i n B a n g l a d e s h s i n c e 1971.  10  The two Union P a r i s h a d members living i n t e r v i e w e d on A p r i l 23 & 2 4 , 1981.  11  Government p r e s s u r e on o f f i c i a l s t o work c l o s e l y v i l l a g e r s has r e s u l t e d i n more v i s i t s t o v i l l a g e s be r e a c h e d e a s i l y and i n l i t t l e t i m e .  the  Secretariat  in  and e x p o s e d t o  in Colipur 1982.  made  i n Dhaka on A p r i l  Extraordinary, Bangladesh  May 2 4 ,  entails  five  in  but  this  17, 1982. 1980, R u l e years  of  C o l i p u r were with which  the can  233  IX. In local In  the  government  this  chapter,  findings and  preceding  and  points analysis  view,  of  attempts  to  whether a t  of  local  not  of  in  the  Calcutta and  They  the  alliance  the  dominated  rural  administrative devolution  tried  central  arm  of  of  of  in the  did  headquarters.  not  the  local  periodic  of  were l e f t  as  much  to the  mercy  imperial  The  British  every  this  localities  locality  deficiency to  beyond the  was the  by  landlords. the  landlords  Gradually,  government  to  government,  rule,  same r e s u l t s .  up  power  retained  colonial  Later,  the  historical  the  centre  Bengal.  go  of  delegate  administer  the  extending  and  to  the  make  like  areas.  government o f f i c i a l s ,  society  of a u t h o r i t y  subdivisional  to  to  methods  c o n s i s t e n t l y emerges i s  villagers  the  the  from d i f f e r e n t  Throughout  British  of  countries  failure  elsewhere,  yielded  administration with  continual  Bangladesh  or  During  natives  in  to  established.  summary  possibility  early period,  relevant  objectives,  reforms  theme t h a t  have a d e q u a t e p e r s o n n e l  entrusting  the  c e n t r a l government  possible  the  on  Bangladesh?  i t , one  powerholders.  effectively.  In  In  brief  these aspects  the  the  government  the  a  d i s s e r t a t i o n to wider of  in  Delhi, as  distrust did  of  localities.  authority  in this  change  reluctance  assess  causes  local  government  examine e a c h of  reforms  evolution  the  the  findings  i n B a n g l a d e s h have been to present  local  and  presented  government  a number of  make some o b s e r v a t i o n s  What a r e  the  I intend  I will  of  chapters,  reforms  c o n s e q u e n c e s of  Bangladesh.  CONCLUSIONS  the  extended,  but  district  and  Pakistani  rulers  234  introduced This  t h e e l e c t o r a l method t o c o n s t i t u t e  replaced  bodies  by  the previous  the  government.  Nevertheless,  i n key p o s i t i o n s a s  councils.  They  became  through  the their  government  of  the l o c a l  leaders  strategy prominence There leadership  who  works  after  pursued  rural  and  then  in  policy  the  i n the l o c a l  the l o c a l i t i e s  most o f t h e s e  previous  councils.  They  direct  seeks  supporters win  are  coming  The to  time.  and  who  elected  acquired  extensions  to  local  national  of  themselves important  Weak l i n k s between t h e  know t h a t  over  incentives.  who  reforms  i n strong  most  assistance  to  politicians  being  helping  as the r u l e r s .  c a s e s where p a r t y  people  local  are, in  They have e s t a b l i s h e d  after  have r e s u l t e d  leaders.  with  s e c t i o n of l o c a l  leaders,  creating  party  f o r the f i r s t  institutions.  by  through various of  development  m a i n t a i n c o n t r o l by  t h e government  case  politics  during  legitimate  areas  usually  elected  of  rulers t r y to  The s u p p o r t e r s  In o t h e r  of the  Bangladesh  a  central  same p o l i t i c a l  councils  i s another status  them.  local  officials. the  the  the  are  in local  government  positions and  period,  not succeed a t the p o l l s ,  local  even  government  t o dominate  the c e n t r a l r u l e r s .  the  as  in  institutions  followers  They e n t e r  do  presence  supporters  cases,  from  contemporary  of  c o n t r o l on b e h a l f  continued  o f government  officials  chairmen  c o n t r o l and d i r e c t i n g programmes o f r u r a l  the l e a d e r s h i p  In  their  The  government  ex-officio  to exercise  The t r e n d  independent.  retaining  assert  were a b l e  government.  councils.  method o f n o m i n a t i n g members t o l o c a l  were p l a c e d  central  local  centre  power b a s e s f o r politics  can not  235  permeate  the v i l l a g e  maintain the  control  ruling  existing union  structure.  their  localities  political  local  level,  lower  over  power  party.  government  they  levels.  try  without  Since  they  institutions,  too are  They  Such l e a d e r s  reluctant either  through a subservient Thus,  local  unwillingness government effect,  and  controlled,  government  rural  the  power  elites  by  by l o c a l  elites  the  the  Gram S a r k a r  experience  demonstrates,  not have t h e  liberty  planning  according  to  the  reforms cannot withheld  by  the  devolution  by  A  been  elites for  authority way  to of  the  This  view  the  in  the  the  as  from  a  chronic  the  central  levels.  as  the  the  units  do  government control  is  The r e s u l t s  are  local  of  delegated  councils  which  precondition  must be  level  its  programmes  Local  The f i r s t  and  As  level  degree of  In  through  level.  lowest  an  for  adequate  units. problem i s  government the  them  imposed  centre.  villages  l o o k i n g at  control  of  long  small  lowest  the  implementing  in c o n t r o l  c a s e s where new l o c a l  tried.  village  the  a long time.  government  different  particular  at  of  are  locality.  succeed  operation  government  and  the  government  local  local of  of  u s u r p a t i o n of  have been o p e r a t i n g improving  needs  be e x p e c t e d t o  w o r s e n e d by t h e authority  of  the  intermediate  central above  the  to  from  part  institutions  the  at  of  power  to  suffer  on t h e  at  or  from  in c o n t r o l  example,  to  council.  reforms  government either  or  government  to d e c e n t r a l i z e  local  officials  local  are  to d e c e n t r a l i z e  new schemes s u c h as S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r s ,  able  assistance  for  to o b s t r u c t  are  bottom  to  examine  institutions reveals  that  have local  236  government reforms succeed of  preparedness  differ  to accept changes d i f f e r s widely.  from one another  history  of  i n v a r y i n g degrees because the  each  characteristics,  in  village, the  accomplishments  several  respects.  mix  of  people  add up to d i f f e r e n t  The lowest  prepared  and  receive  power  institutions of  local  with the  level  utilize  process  Lack  The to  government  absence  articulate  institutions  improvements  do  interactions  with  urban  of  not  influences  establishing  demands  succeed.  local  and  able  running  to new  i n the system negate a l l  intentions  leadership  for services  make  which  have  regular  and which have been exposed to perform  relatively  l o c a l government  better  second  important  success of l o c a l government reforms The be  t h i s study.  by drawing On  determining the  i n Bangladesh  together the two p r i n c i p a l  the macro  power i s e s s e n t i a l .  level,  utilize  i n Bangladesh.  f a i l u r e of l o c a l government reforms  explained  delegate  factor  in  institutions.  power  a  local  and the changes aimed at  of the l o c a l i t i e s t o r e c e i v e and  as  and  and the  Thus, the preparedness emerges  be  government  will  best  Villages  areas  must  The p o p u l a t i o n must  local  ineffective,  urban are  of the  capable  past  The preparedness  preparation  p o s s i b i l i t i e s of progress i n s p i t e  inability  units  it.  i n which  of  economic  their  operate and the r o l e of the v i l l a g e r s  government.  plans.  and  and  involves increasing p o l i t i c a l mobilization. be made f a m i l i a r  particular  l e v e l s of consciousness and  ways of r e a c t i n g t o reforms. to  The v i l l a g e s  The  i t s geographical  level  a  sincere  can  f i n d i n g s of  willingness  During B r i t i s h c o l o n i a l  to  r u l e , the  237  rulers  did  not  want  decentralizing restricted made the  to  scope to d e v e l o p .  ruler  resulted at  the  scene  even  after  These  unwilling  see  to  position  system in  unwillingness operate  effectively  The  the  explanation  by a s s e s s i n g t h e changes  at  in  government.  of  government  institutions  villages  Therefore, willingness the  at  local on t h e  intermediate  institutions these  government  were not  levels  at  of the  uniformly government  part levels  at  the  to  dominate  leaders,  in  of  lowest  so t h e y  the  local  dominant  p r o b l e m was to  villages  In  the  the  develop  lowest  to  only  Bangladesh  and  to  levels,  instance  prepared to accept  the  levels,  require  government  the  the  local  seen  that  reform.  not  only  a  and l e a d e r s  at  development  but a l s o p r o p e r  the c h a l l e n g e s  to  of  establish was  reforms  level,  respond  it  allow  c a n meet  were  levels.  the c e n t r a l to  power  the  their  a major units  the  naturally,  threaten  Thus,  them t o  must be s u p p l e m e n t e d , on t h e m i c r o  willingness  the  the  rural  government  p r e p a r e d n e s s of  local  a f o r m i d a b l e g r o u p of  would  lowest  to The  continued  areas.  was  legitimacy  Ayub  decentralization  it  local  had  Khan.  level  further  to allow  institutions  system which brought  union  rural  by  decentralization  General  of  They  the  centres  base and p r o v i d e  rise  because  the  some  Pakistan,  union l e v e l .  power  government  Later, power  the  was a b o l i s h e d .  government  of  in  competing  and l o c a l  establish a rural  process  rural  create  authority,  new m i l i t a r y  leaders  to  of  local  preparation  p r e s e n t e d by  the  reforms. If  the  two  preconditions  I  have  specified  are  so  238  inadequately in the  met,  s y s t e m of  Bangladesh's living by  local  rulers  conditions  the  why a r e  local  government have  in the  British  t o be t h e  changes  conditions  in  local  demonstrate  The B r i t i s h ,  by and l a r g e ,  local  people  b o d i e s and satisfied, to  the for  life,  p r o c e s s of  in the  the  at  major  felt  the  rural  elected  the d e p a r t u r e changes  they  In  their  at  base and were e a s i l y local  of  until  too,  leaders  leaders  the  of  the the  British, first  efforts  attempted to  to  p r o v i d e d the  more  to the  local  elites  Thus,  the  improvement  of  government  were no rulers  of  themselves  legitimize their  reform l o c a l  local  as  government.  there  for  of  institutions  of  British  military  base  the union l e v e l won o v e r  to a s s o c i a t e  the  local  their  for  government.  the  the  demands  these  not  system of  need t o e s t a b l i s h a power  areas.  in power,  of  of  and  The c r e a t i o n in  to  predominated.  the  aspirations  native population,  the  to  and t r i e d  the  attempt  an a n a l y s i s  objectives  reacted  was t h e main o b j e c t i v e  Pakistan's  introduced  natives  time,  and  every  Yet,  were  affairs  i n t r o d u c e d changes in After  before  governing.  of  a p e r i o d of  rulers  i n d e p e n d e n t B a n g l a d e s h have  elites,  inclusion  participate  rural  urban  i n the  appeasement o f  it  by  participation  other  simply  of  and i n c r e a s e d  government.  that  objectives  improvement of  of  reforms  changes  been t h e  objectives  consequences  stated  colonial  rulers  under w h i c h t h e  self-government  The  consistently  governments as w e l l as the  initiate  ?  localities  residents.  announced t h e s e  a t t e m p t s made t o b r i n g a b o u t  attempts Pakistan in  continuation  government.  were u s e d a s government's  the  The  their  support  side.  These  government w i t h much n e e d e d s u p p o r t  239  to c o n t i n u e  i n power  Contrary or  initiated  the  Awami  to a l l  League  elections.  in  first  (AL).  the  elections  government the  local  (BNP)  it  of  system.  needed a r u r a l  institutions  t o win  local  in  local  aspirations at  of  improving  development, support A  for  pattern  they the  area  the  for  of  secretariat  functions  by  to  in  the  led  by  structure  was  well  the  a  in  surprising  while a l l  that  intended  Party  new  local  opportunity at  reforms the  affairs,  and  through  as  in  satisfying  local  localities  the  changes  of  attempts  aimed a t in  power  Nationalist  w i t h an  the  party  and came t o  and t h e c r e a t i o n  primarily  new  i n t r o d u c e major  the  a  rural  network  of  rulers. concern  the  is  The  the  They  elites also  reforms.  d e s i g n the  strategy  decision  central  the c e n t r a l  required.  implementation central  not  ostensibly  government. made  has been  of  When  rulers,  people to p a r t i c i p a t e  central  is  changes  were  were  local  government  Thus,  conditions  second  reforming  of  the  war.  p r o v i d e d the p a r t y  leaders.  government  power  The B a n g l a d e s h  support base,  government over  was  formed became keen t o  government  Bangladesh  planned  had become s u p p o r t e r s of  military it  of  extremely  liberation  1979,  c h a n g e s were  rural  did  leaders  l a u n c h e d by B a n g l a d e s h ' s the  government  party  local  p e r i o d of  no major  The e x i s t i n g  as t h e  Several  AL d u r i n g t h e  1971.  expectations,  d u r i n g the  c o n s i d e r e d adequate  was  up t o  reform  ruling elites.  tend  to  institutions,  be a s s i g n e d t o t h e c o u n c i l s .  usual nature  control  officials and  Even t h e  in  local  The  t o d e c i d e on t h e  Government new  to  pursued  the at  a  determine control  240  of  local  councils  e n t r u s t e d w i t h the local the  bodies.  are who  idea about  in  light  imposed  on  of  w i t h the  of  the  determined  and  officials  the c a p i t a l  Not  localities  the  are  city.  in  approved  by  They have design  then,  centre  the  conditions  and  surprisingly,  from  who  supervising  c o n d i t i o n s , and c a n n o t  experience.  the  officials  improving l i v i n g  by  in  village  government  constituting  ways of  operate  little the  task  Thus,  villages  politicians  rests  reforms  the  do n o t  very  schemes  s u c c e e d or  continue. An a l t e r n a t i v e localities  to  government  reforms.  decide  knowledge  about  utilizing  them t o  to  strategy,  this  strategy on  the  The  the  beyond  the a v a i l a b l e tackle the  local  strategy level  is  reforms level  of  would  reflect  and a l l o w  operate  improving  For  in  local  this  step often  to  the  projects be  t h e most p a r t ,  where  help  and  in  activities  of  according as  extraordinary  required,  should  guidance.  projects  overlooked  of  best  at  local at  the  The lowest  government the  local  preparedness a v i l l a g e  government  institutions  best  suited  to  local  conditions.  The  reforming  local  government  and  of  in  living  emphasize the  role  at  the  lowest  of  local  levels  councils.  to  has  local  pursued  conditions  level  the  optimum way  reason,  c o u n c i l s are  Spontaneous the  have  local  s h o u l d be awarded  cases  for  the  p r o c e d u r e s of  institutions  Only  allowing  and t h e  p l a n n i n g and e x e c u t i n g l o c a l  in Bangladesh.  strategy  resources  approached  a significant  attained, and  be  and  of  inhabitants  problems.  t h e means of  government  needs  local  much autonomy as p o s s i b l e . inputs  may be a d v o c a t e d ,  must,  plan  for  241  What have p a s t local  government  prevailing  in  i n terms of sporadic  reform attempts  in  the  Bangladesh?  rural  areas,  improved l i v i n g  instances  of or  villages,  the  needs  were,  objectives  of  political continue  of  at  progress.  from t h e  Local  given  an  of  colonial  councils  of  election  include  of  s t e p s w o u l d be a  these  is  was  It  attempts  natural  at  since  some  agriculture,  for  the  Local  rulers  government  people's allow  The  desire  the  for  rulers  to  past  local  localities  But  that  elites  Gradually,  The l o c a l  the  the  previously  cumulative would  has not  and  government  w h i c h were  which  that  r e f o r m s were not  some  b o d i e s was a b o l i s h e d  introduced.  system  been  and i n d i g e n o u s  participate.  to expect  change.  has  effect  respond  to  been t h e c a s e  planned w e l l  in  w i t h an  eye  government  were  development.  Instead, f o c u s s e d on t h e Frequent  in  unattained.  there  created  to  neglected.  on f u t u r e  did  period,  were  opportunity  s y s t e m was e x t e n d e d t o  Bangladesh  achieved.  been  improved r o a d s ,  largely  some  have  electricity  a s u p p o r t base  n o m i n a t i n g members t o  principle  future  such as  still  they  conditions  Although there  of  s y s t e m of  has been a c c o m p l i s h e d  productive  least  and  the  more  periodically  fulfill  by  the  office.  Starting  all  little  supply  creating  participation, in  practice  of  course,  reforms helped to  the  the  e d u c a t i o n and w e l f a r e a r e  political  were  very  some b e t t e r m e n t  facilities, basic  Judging  standards.  irrigation  health,  c o n t r i b u t e d to  all  reform  attempts  immediate p o l i t i c a l  changes  i n government  at  in  local  benefits the c e n t r e  for  the  and t h e  rulers. effort  to  242  establish  new s u p p o r t  affected  the  institutions.  government cannot  continuity New  institutions  bases f o r r u l e r s  rulers  prepare  the  display  introduced  institutions  introduced  in  by  far  tendency previous  face c o n t i n u a l  have  been  Therefore,  a l l  attempts  government  Bangladesh  have  to start  build  has local  abolish Local  and t h e r e f o r e , Most  forgotten to  reforms  after  their  reform  local  anew, w i t h no b a s e t o  upon. Reform  implies  An  examination  in  local  governments continued  of the Bangladesh e v i d e n c e have  although  initiating betterment  increased  not  that  was  the  the changes. of l i f e  past  consequences.  Most  existing  reveals  stated  Reforms  have  that  changes  objective  should  by t h e  only  system.  resulted  i n the l o c a l i t i e s ,  attempts  of a  necessarily  a w a r e n e s s and p a r t i c i p a t i o n  Bangladesh,  or a d j u s t  t h e amendment and improvement  government  improvements,  of  of  rulers.  improvement.  gradually  power  to  disruption  cancellation. in  capture  development  a  the  the ground f o r f u t u r e  so  who  in  of the  produce  a  as a by-product residents.  rarely  yielded  In such  " r e f o r m s " have m e r e l y been a t t e m p t s t o a l t e r structures  of l o c a l  e x p e c t a t i o n s of the people or serve  government  the i n t e r e s t s  t o appease the of the  ruling  group. The d i s t i n c t i o n Many  of  altering structures or  between  the  changes  the  titles  and t h e i r  abolished  local  in of  r e f o r m s and c h a n g e s must be n o t e d . Bangladesh  local  position  bodies,  in society  government  were  directed  keeping intact.  institutions,  merely at  the Others  older created  but d i d not t r y t o  243  fit  new  institutions  c h a n g e s and t h e i r not  in  failures  u s e d t o d e s i g n new  attained the  even a f t e r  local  local  government  government  of  the  major  explanation  for  Bangladesh  is  t h o u s a n d s of  various among  parts  them  of  history  of  B a n g l a d e s h and an e x a m i n a t i o n  of  of  The  the  analysis  the  of  local  country  comprehensible All  placed  of on  of  only  villages  are  represent  is  villages  of  to e s t a b l i s h  hoped t h a t  the  reforms  A l t h o u g h the government  in  may be u s e f u l countries.  in other  explanations  a particular for  In  parts  the  reform  in  the a n a l y s i s  of  doing  so,  all  Bangladesh  I  at  can  be  different government  have  developed  failure  of  local  Bangladesh.  the  reforms the  in  political  stem from an e x a m i n a t i o n  of  of  differences  explanation  country,  out  localities  local  of  be  area  located  levels  the  can  of  three  and o p e r a t e  s t u d y c a n be e x t e n d e d t o a n a l y z e  government  part  The major  terms of  The  has been an  government  and  in  history  a c o n t i n u u m of m o b i l i z a t i o n , a t  preparedness It  the  the  supplementary  experience  three  of  control  But  the  of  S w a n i r v a r Gram S a r k a r .  change and t r a n s i t i o n .  are  institutions. in t h i s  of  of  mobilization.  levels  upon  be in  Central  past.  based  were  c o u l d not  brought  from an a n a l y s i s  country.  failure  and  of  Bangladesh.  in  the  of,  Improvements  b a s e d on t h e  villages.  stages  similarly  follow  the  note  experience  about  institutions  in  Past  c h a n g e s had been  s y s t e m of  entire  concern  different  institutions.  explanation  a p p l i e d to the  system.  were s e l d o m t a k e n  reforms  three v i l l a g e - l e v e l part  existing  several  These c o n c l u s i o n s  of  the  f i n d i n g s of in  other  of  local  this  study  developing  g o a l s and o b j e c t i v e s ,  both  244  s t a t e d and unstated, along with the reforms  circumstances  are i n t r o d u c e d , must be c o n s i d e r e d .  local  government  c o n s i d e r e d a reform. improvement  of  system.  Not  just  The change must be  living  any  aimed  change  attempts  the  of  a  i n the country.  be  made  efforts  must  precedence The  to  prevent  the  latter  attempts  at  improvements  in  the  based  on  to be s u c c e s s f u l , must  be  places  emphasis  institutions.  centre  discourages be w i l l i n g  on  stunts  the l o c a l the  development  popular p a r t i c i p a t i o n . to devolve c o n t r o l of  councils.  This  does  not  of  a l s o be taken to allow the government.  The  from  taking  local  mean  intimidated  by  the same s p i r i t ,  local a  government  strategy  that  S t r i c t c o n t r o l at  local  bodies  and  affairs  statements  autonomy  to  local  to that e f f e c t on  in practice.  at  the  Steps must  a l l levels  of  local  new i n s t i t u t i o n s should be designed i n such a  manner as t o allow adequate  scope f o r o p e r a t i n g  older l o c a l local  i n s t e a d of competing  without  being  i n s t i t u t i o n s and t h e i r l e a d e r s .  In  i n s t i t u t i o n s at a l l l e v e l s must cooperate  with one another  At the bottom, l o c a l i t i e s must  for l o c a l  But a l l  At the top, the c e n t r e must  paper, but as much autonomy as p o s s i b l e  respond  strengthen  over the former.  system,  the  at  T h i s can  i n c o n j u n c t i o n with party  to  in  can be  principally  c o n d i t i o n s i n the l o c a l i t i e s .  political  will  improvements  c e r t a i n l y be t r i e d position  which  Such a n a l y s i s  r e v e a l whether the changes are aimed s o l e l y at the  under  w e l l to the reforms.  f o r funds and c o n t r o l . be  carefully  prepared  to  Reforms present new o p p o r t u n i t i e s  residents to p a r t i c i p a t e  in public a f f a i r s .  Adequate  245  preparation  is  Mob