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Open Access Local power in colonial and contemporary Goa Pouvoir local à Goa, coloniale et contemporaine Poder local na Goa colonial e contemporânea

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Local power in colonial and contemporary Goa Pouvoir local à Goa, coloniale et contemporaine Poder local na Goa colonial e contemporânea

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Provincial governments, whether "colonial non-democratic" or "post-colonial democratic", perceive local government as appendage to "Empire of the State", despite support and legitimization for the latter from "Colonial Federal Regime" and later "Post-Colonial Democratic Federal Regime". In fact, in the Indian state of Goa, local governments were more empowered substantively under the Portuguese colonial regime, than under present day democratic regime, even though the former were partially elective institutions with limited franchise. The article also maps the shortcomings of urban local government viz its racial bias in appointment to posts, prevalent corruption due to privileges bestowed on municipal officers and the virtual stagnation of local government institutions under the continental Portuguese colonial regime, unlike the evolution of democratic local government in the rest of India under the British.

Besides the state created local institutions, this article focuses on colonial state's assimilation of traditional associative communitarian institution. In contrast to this, it is argued that unscrupulous post-colonial governments have, under the guise of law and "public interest", virtually annihilated these associative institutions by depriving them of their most precious resource – land. In the postcolonial phase, local governments have been intentionally kept financially dependent on provincial governments. It is evident that in the wake of over 50% urbanisation of Goa and rapid migration of people from the rural to urban areas and to Goa from other parts of India, local governments are ill-equipped deal with the complexities of spatial planning, water, and resource allocation and management due to large scale political interference from provincial governments and parties and their own shortcomings. Les gouvernements provinciaux, qu'ils soient « coloniaux et non démocratiques » ou « postcoloniaux et démocratiques », perçoivent le gouvernement local comme un prolongement de « l'Empire de l'État », malgré le soutien et la légitimation de ce dernier par le « Régime fédéral colonial » et plus tard par le « Régime démocratique fédéral postcolonial ». De fait, dans l'État indien de Goa, les gouvernements locaux jouissaient de pouvoirs sensiblement plus importants sous le régime colonial portugais que sous le régime démocratique existant de nos jours, même si autrefois, ces institutions n'étaient que partiellement électives, avec un droit de vote limité. Cet article illustre également les carences du gouvernement local urbain, c'est-à-dire ses préjugés raciaux pour l'attribution de certains postes, sa corruption généralisée due aux privilèges accordés aux fonctionnaires municipaux et la quasi-stagnation des institutions du gouvernement local sous le régime colonial portugais continental, qui contraste avec l'évolution du gouvernement local démocratique dans le reste de l'Inde sous la domination britannique.

En dehors des institutions locales créées par l'État, cet article s'intéresse à l'assimilation par l'État colonial des institutions communautaires associatives traditionnelles. Par contraste avec ce thème, d'aucuns avancent l'idée que des gouvernements postcoloniaux sans scrupules ont, sous couvert de la loi et de « l'intérêt public », pratiquement annihilé ces institutions associatives en les privant de leur ressource la plus précieuse : la terre. Au cours de la période postcoloniale, la dépendance financière des gouvernements locaux par rapport aux gouvernements de province a été volontairement maintenue. Il est évident que, dans le sillage de l'urbanisation de plus de 50 % de Goa et de la migration rapide des habitants des zones rurales vers les zones urbaines, ou des autres régions de l'Inde vers Goa, les gouvernements locaux sont mal équipés pour maîtriser les complexités de l'aménagement de l'espace, de la distribution et de la gestion de l'eau et des ressources, en raison d'interférences politiques sur une large échelle de la part de tierces parties et des gouvernements de provinces et à cause de leurs propres carences.
Os governos provinciais, quer "coloniais não-democráticos" ou "pós-coloniais democráticos", encaram os governos locais como um apêndice do "Império do Estado", apesar do apoio e da legitimação para estes últimos pelo "Regime Colonial Federal" e o posterior "Regime Pós-colonial Democrático Federal". De facto, no Estado Indiano de Goa, os governos locais tinham substancialmente mais poder sob o regime colonial português que sob o actual regime democrático, mesmo apesar dos primeiros serem instituições parcialmente electivas com direitos políticos limitados. O artigo também faz o levantamento das lacunas dos governos locais urbanos através dos preconceitos raciais nas nomeações para os cargos, a corrupção predominante devido a privilégios concedidos aos funcionários municipais e a estagnação virtual das instituições governamentais locais sob o regime colonial e continental português, ao contrário da evolução dos governos democráticos locais no resto da Índia sob o domínio britânico.

Além do estado criado pelas instituições locais, este artigo foca a assimilação pelo estado colonial das instituições associativas e comunitárias tradicionais. Argumenta-se, em oposição a isto, que os governos pós-coloniais aniquilaram praticamente, sob a capa da lei e do "interesse público", estas instituições associativas ao privá-las do seu recurso mais precioso – a terra. Na fase pós-colonial, os governos locais ficaram dependentes, de maneira intencional, dos governos provinciais. É evidente que, com o resultado da urbanização de mais de 50 % de Goa e a migração rápida das populações das áreas rurais para as áreas urbanas e para Goa a partir de outras partes da Índia, os governos locais estão mal preparados para lidar com as complexidades do planeamento espacial, o abastecimento de água e a distribuição e gestão de recursos devido à intervenção política em grande escala dos governos provinciais e dos partidos e as suas próprias lacunas.

Affiliations: 1: Goa University, Department of Political Science

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/content/journals/10.1163/176830808786933472
2008-11-01
2016-12-02

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