Functions of Zilla Parishad in India

Functions of Zilla Parishad in India 

Zilla Parishad is located at the apex of the Panchayat system at the district level. It consists of the Chairman of the Panchayat Samities as ex-officio Members, M.L.As, and M.P.s of the area. Representatives of women, scheduled castes and tribes, and backward classes are co-opted as members.

The representatives of co-operative societies in the area like the co-operative central bank and marketing society are nominated to Zilla Parishad to act as official members. The chairman and Vice-chairman are elected by the Chairman of Panchayat Samities in the district.

At the district level, the Panchayati raj system is called "Zila Parishad". It looks after the administration of the rural area of the district and its office is located at the district headquarters. It is headed by the "District Collector" or the "District Magistrate" or the "Deputy Commissioner".  The Chairman of all the Panchayat Samitis forms the members of Zila Parishad. It is the link between the State Government and the Panchayat Samiti.

The major function of a district level panchayat is to provide essential services like supply of improved seeds, running schools, PHCs, and hospitals, construction of bridges and roads, etc. 


The main functions of the Zilla Parishad may be categorized as Development, Civic, Welfare, Coordinative, Supervisory, Financial and Advisory.

1. Developmental functions: The developmental function includes looking after developmental work in the district and secures the execution of developmental projects and other activities in the blocks under the district. The problems and difficulties arising out of the execution of the projects are discussed at the apex body which finds out ways and means to solve them through negotiation with the state government.

2. Civic activities: Construction and maintenance of public roads, bridges, culverts, parks, and water supply system come under the civic activities of Zilla Parishad.

3. Welfare functions: Establishment of markets, running of public libraries, dispensaries, public health, and family planning centers, and providing relief in times of calamities are some examples of its civil welfare activities.

4. Coordination: The Zilla Parishad also works as the chief coordinator of the activities of the Panchayat Samities at the block level. It is through the blocks that the districts prosper. Therefore the Zilla Parishads coordinate and consolidate the developmental projects in the block levels.

5. Financial functions: It has financial functions also. It examines and approves the budgets of the Panchayat Samities and distributes funds to them. It exercises financial control over the Panchayat Samities and the Village Panchayats.

6. Advisory functions: By virtue of working with the other two levels of the Panchayati System it is in a position to advise the state government about the activities to be taken up at the grass-root level. The advice offered to the state government in right earnest can never be hardly overlooked or neglected.

Zilla Parishad links Panchayat Samitis within the district. It coordinates their activities and supervises their functioning. It prepares district plans and integrates Samiti plans into district plans for submission to the State Government.

Zilla Parishad looks after development works in the entire district. It undertakes schemes to improve agricultural production, exploit ground water resources, extend rural electrification and distribution and initiate employment-generating activities, construct roads and other public works. It also performs welfare functions like relief during natural calamities and scarcity, the establishment of orphanages and poor homes, night shelters, the welfare of women and children, etc.

In addition, Zilla Parishads perform functions entrusted to them under the Central and State Government-sponsored programs. For example, Jawahar Rozgar Yojna is a big centrally sponsored scheme for which money is directly given to the districts to undertake employment-generating activities.
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