ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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SRI LANKA-Vote for Reconciliation

group opines that "the target-oriented approach of a centrally-sponsored/vertical programme has to yield place to a people- oriented, decentralised approach" and then suggests the integration of the family welfare -programme (which includes population control measures) with other health care services run by the department of health. It therefore wants the panchayats and nagarpalikas to "prepare a socio-demographic charter for the respective village, town or city" with specific goals for "population stabilisation developed after discussion among the people of the area" to indicate the steps "which the local community plans to initiate for ending social evils like-dowry, child marriage,, female foeticide and infanticide and female and male illiteracy." While these normative guidelines are fine and acceptable by those opposed to the 'social evils' mentioned above, one wonders whether the members of the expert group are familiar with the ground reality in the countryside where the panchayats are supposed to be agents of decentralisation. Till July this year, out of the 25 states, in 16 elections to the various tiers of the panchayati system

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