Gram Panchayat is basic village institute. It is formal and democratic structure at gross root level in the country. It acts as cabinet of the village. It is political institute. A village or groups of village are the jurisdiction of work of Gram Panchayat.
Structural aspects of Gram Panchayat:
Gram Panchayat is formed by election procedure. The adult citizen voters elect their leaders as members of Gram Panchayat from the wards by observing formal voting procedure. Then the members elect their Chief leader known as ‘Sarpanch’. Every member has been assigned a portfolio of Gram Panchayat work.
The Gram Panchayat Secretary is official man and he is known as ‘Gram Sevak’. He assists the work of Sarpanch and keeps records and documentation village. He reports periodically to the higher authorities whenever asked for. There are
i) Peon (Kotwal) and
ii) Sweepers as employees of Gram Panchayat.
Gramsabha includes all the adult citizen voters of the village. It is empowered to support or topple down the Gram Panchayat body. This Gram Sabha can contributes number of decisions taken by the Gram Panchayat and facilitate to modify the week decisions, whenever they feel. The Gram Panchayat can be established for village having population more than 750 to 25,000. The villages having less population are grouped under group Gram Panchayat. The number of members usually ranges from 7 to 17 on the strength of village population. These are various Committees viz. Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Public Works, Social Welfare and Health and sanitation in village Gram Panchayat.