Urban Governance and Finance in India
Over 330 million people live in Indias cities; 35 cities have a population of over a million and three (Mumbai, Delhi, and Kolkata) of the 10 largest metropolises in the world are in India. Indias cities are large, economically important, and growing. However, neither urban infrastructure nor the level of urban public services is adequate for current needs, let alone to meet growing demands. Dealing with this problem is a formidable challenge. Not only must adequate finance for the provision of services be found but it is critical to ensure that the money spent results in desired outputs and outcomes. To do so, local governance structures also need to be reformed and strengthened. This paper attempts to point the way towards some possible solutions by analysing urban governance and finance in India in the context of lessons drawn from fiscal federalism theory and experiences of governance institutions and financing systems both in India and around the world. No one system of urban governance is likely to work equally well for all urban local bodies. However, the paper identifies some key reforms required to realise both the constitutional intent to encourage citizen participation in urban governance and the economic and politically desirable goal of ensuring greater accountability of urban governments. For example, the paper draws attention to existing ambiguities in the assignment system and underlines the need to undertake activity mapping to ensure clarity as well as to make independent agencies significantly accountable to elected governments in urban areas. The paper also discusses a variety of ways of augmenting the resources of the municipal bodies in the country including essential reforms in the property tax system and adequate exploitation of user charges and fees for various services delivered as well as ways of strengthening and improving Central and State transfers to urban local governments. With respect to financing urban infrastructure, development charges should be used more effectively. More should also be done to utilise public lands more effectively. In addition, to a considerable extent capital expenditure requirements will have to be financed through borrowing so further development of the municipal bond market is important, as is more and more effective use of public private partnerships in some areas.
|Date of creation:||Jan 2010|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: JG Crawford Building #13, Asia Pacific School of Economics and Government, Australian National University, ACT 0200|
Web page: http://www.eaber.org
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Enid Slack & Juan R. Cuadrado-Roura & José Miguel Fernández Güell & Eduardo Rojas & Richard Bird & Jeroen Klink & Christian Lefévre & Joan Subirats & Quim Brugué & Andrés Monzón & Alberto Etchegaray, 2005. "Governing the Metropolis: Principles and Cases," IDB Publications (Books), Inter-American Development Bank, number 79939 edited by Juan R. Cuadrado-Roura & José Miguel Fernández Güell & Eduardo Rojas, january.
- Jonathan A. Rodden & Gunnar S. Eskeland (ed.), 2003. "Fiscal Decentralization and the Challenge of Hard Budget Constraints," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262182297.
- M.Govinda Rao & Simanti Bandyopadhyay, 2009.
"Fiscal Health of Selected Indian Cities,"
- Bandyopadhyay, Simanti & Rao, M. Govinda, 2009. "Fiscal health of selected Indian cities," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4863, The World Bank.
- Bandyopadhyay,Simanti & M. Govinda Rao, 2009. "Fiscal health of selected Indian cities," Working Papers 09/58, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy.
- Simanti Bandyopadhyay & M. Govinda Rao, 2009. "Fiscal Health of Selected Indian Cities," Development Economics Working Papers 22970, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
- Kornai, Janos, 1986.
"The Soft Budget Constraint,"
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(1), pages 3-30.
- R. Kavita Rao, 2008.
"Goods and Services Tax for India,"
Macroeconomics Working Papers
22976, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
- Breton,Albert, 1996. "Competitive Governments," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521481021, October.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eab:govern:21851. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shiro Armstrong)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.