Trends of Power Devolution in South Asia: A Comparative Appraisal of Pakistan’s Local Government System under the Civil-Military Regimes
Keywords:Power Devolution, Local Government System, South Asia, Pakistan, Military Regime, Civilian Government
In the South Asian countries, the trends of power sharing, decentralization and power evolution have not only always remained a pertinent debate for the consolidation of democracy and good governance, but also static political systems due to their multiethnic realities, multilingual differences, multicultural diversification, and their authoritarian orientation in the respective countries. Historically, the transfer of power through the local system of government (LGS) was seen as an important tool to accelerate the transition to representative democracy on the subcontinent. However, it was largely aimed at creating a new political class that would support colonial rule and meet the political demands of the local population for power sharing within the boundaries of the colonial government structure. Due to their embedded interests, the colonial legacies in South Asian states offered non-representative state institutions such as the military enough space to influence the transformation process of democracy. The paper has two main objectives: (1) to explore the concepts of power devolution and their associative nomenclature; (2) to analysis of the political and administrative dimensions of decentralization to underpin the structure of decentralization in South Asia in general and Pakistan in particular. The results of the study are that the lack of the weakest local government system in the South Asian region in general, and in Pakistan in particular, is due to the colonial legacy of an ongoing controlled political mindset in the form of bureaucracy, frequent military coups, a lack of political will to develop a welfare state in Pakistan. It uses the qualitative research methods of phenomenology and correlation, which sheds light on the meaning of relative terms often used to explain delegation of authority for political and administrative purposes.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Dr. Asifa Jahangir, Rubeel Zain, Soulat Dilkusha
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