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Affirmative Action and Political Participation: Elected Representatives in the Panchayats of Orissa


  • Pratyusna Patnaik

    (Institute for social and Economic Change)


Drawing on empirical data from four gram panchayas in Orissa the paper examines the 'representation' of elected representatives-more particularly those of disadvantaged categories-by exploring their participation in the governance process, responsiveness towards the interst of their constitutents and their accountability in gram panchatats. The paper concludes that despite the opportunity for inclusion and empowerment affirmative actin in decentralisation has not been successful in ensuring effective representation of disadvantaged groups with respect to the above attributes.

Suggested Citation

  • Pratyusna Patnaik, 2005. "Affirmative Action and Political Participation: Elected Representatives in the Panchayats of Orissa," Working Papers 166, Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore.
  • Handle: RePEc:sch:wpaper:166

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Daniel Lederman & Norman V. Loayza & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2005. "Accountability And Corruption: Political Institutions Matter," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17, pages 1-35, March.
    2. Anand Inbanathan, 2001. "Representation and Accountability in Local Government: The Panchayats of Karnataka," Working Papers 96, Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore.
    3. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135-135.
    4. Nirmala Rao, 1998. "Representation in Local Politics: a Reconsideration and some New Evidence," Political Studies, Political Studies Association, vol. 46(1), pages 19-35, March.
    5. Blair, Harry, 2000. "Participation and Accountability at the Periphery: Democratic Local Governance in Six Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 21-39, January.
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