Autonomous District Councils
Autonomous District Councils
What are Autonomous District Council?
- As per the Sixth Schedule, the four states viz. Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram contain the Tribal Areas which are technically different from the Scheduled Areas.
- Though these areas fall within the executive authority of the state, provision has been made for the creation of the District Councils and regional councils for the exercise of the certain legislative and judicial powers.
- The acts of Parliament or the state legislature do not apply to autonomous districts and autonomous regions or apply with specified modifications and exceptions.
- Each district is an autonomous district and Governor can modify / divide the boundaries of the said Tribal areas by notification.
Autonomous District Councils in 4 states
The sixth schedule to the Constitution includes 10 autonomous district councils in 4 states. These are:
- Assam: Bodoland Territorial Council, Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council and Dima Hasao Autonomous District Council.
- Meghalaya:Garo Hills Autonomous District Council, Jaintia Hills Autonomous District Council and Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council.
- Tripura: Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council.
- Mizoram: Chakma Autonomous District Council, Lai Autonomous District Council, Mara Autonomous District Council.
Key Provisions (Autonomous District Councils)
- Composition: Each autonomous district has a district council consisting of 30 members, of whom four are nominated by the governor and the remaining 26 are elected on the basis of adult franchise.
- Term: The elected members hold office for a term of five years (unless the council is dissolved earlier) and nominated members hold office during the pleasure of the governor.
- Powers of councils: The district and regional councils administer the areas under their jurisdiction. They can make laws on certain specified matters like land, forests, canal water, shifting cultivation, village administration, inheritance of property, marriage and divorce, social customs and so on. But all such laws require the assent of the governor. (Autonomous District Councils)
- Village councils:The district and regional councils within their territorial jurisdictions can constitute village councils or courts for trial of suits and cases between the tribes. They hear appeals from them. The jurisdiction of high court over these suits and cases is specified by the governor.
- Powers:The district council can establish, construct or manage primary schools, dispensaries, markets, ferries, fisheries, roads and so on in the district. It can also make regulations for the control of money lending and trading by non-tribals. But, such regulations require the assent of the governor. The district and regional councils are empowered to assess and collect land revenue and to impose certain specified taxes.
Functions of ADCs
- The functions of adcs as defined in schedule 6 of the constitution included –
- Making laws on land,
- Management of forests, except reserved forests,
- Appointment of traditional chiefs and headmen,
- Making rules regulating the inheritance of property, marriage, divorce, constitution of village courts,
- To undertake development works like constructions of roads, waterways etc.
- (Autonomous District Councils)
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