Decentralization in India: A Case Study of Local Governance in the Level of the States


  • Patawee Chotanan -


Decentralization, India, State governments, local governance


The purposes of this research article are to investigate the factors influencing decentralization in India and to examine local governance at the state level after decentralization. This study is qualitative, with data drawn from academic books, research articles, and the Indian Constitution, as well as laws and orders concerning decentralization in India and local governance at the state level.

This study found that there are two main factors affecting decentralization in India. These are internal and external factors.  The internal factor is the change on the economic and political contexts in the level of the global and nation. The internal factors are 1. Demanding from political parties and political factions in for solving economic problems and ethnic conflicts, 2. The political structure of India designed by having a balance of power between the central government and the state governments, 3. The continuity and stability of Indian democratic regimes in both the national and local levels, and 4. The spirit of Indian people to fight for freedom and liberty.

This study also found that after India declared independence from the British Empire, decentralization in India had a significant impact on the change in the organizational form of the states. India has 28 state governments that govern 28 states and 8 union territories. Each state’s chief minister, who serves as the head of the executive brunch, and the members of each legislative assembly are elected by the people of that state. Furthermore, the governor of each state, who is appointed by the central government, is regarded as the state’s symbol. They also provide advice to chief ministers and act as a liaison between the national and state governments.

Additionally, decentralization has a positive impact on state governments. They have greater local autonomy, as well as political, administrative, and fiscal power. As a result, under the Indian constitution, each state government can independently implement state development projects at the state and local levels.


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How to Cite

Chotanan, P. (2023). Decentralization in India: A Case Study of Local Governance in the Level of the States. Local Administration Journal, 16(3), 375–390. Retrieved from