Editorial

Publication Date01 Mar 2021
DOI10.1177/00195561211022578
AuthorSurendra Nath Tripathi,Neetu Jain
SubjectEditorial
Indian Journal of Public
Administration
67(1) 7–8, 2021
© 2021 IIPA
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DOI: 10.1177/00195561211022578
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Editorial
The articles in this issue are marked by the diversity of issues. The opening article
titled ‘The Rise of the Panchayati Raj Institutions as the Third Tier in Indian
Federalism: Where the Shoe Pinches’ authored by Prabhat Kumar Datta and
Inderjeet Singh Sodhi critically examines the process of evolution of Panchayati
Raj Institutions (PRIs) as a new tier in the Indian federal system, excluding the
Fifth and Sixth Scheduled Areas. The idea of forming a federal form of govern-
ment became an issue of debate and discussion during the freedom movement.
This article makes an attempt to analyse that despite constitutionalising of PRIs,
where the shoe still pinches and wherein lies the ray of hope.
The article ‘Personal Liability: Forging New Tools of Accountability in Public
Law’ authored by M. P. Chengappa and Adya Jha examines the issue of abuse
of public power by highlighting a few cases. This article delineates some of the
important judgements of the Supreme Court concerning the personal liability of the
officers for the misfeasance in public office. This article chalks out the lacunae in
the theory of personal accountability as it stands today and highlights the aspects
where rethinking is needed. The authors underscore the need for bringing the public
accountability of public servants and opine that the personal liability of public offic-
ers to pay damages is an important alternative to traditional administrative law.
Current urbanisation trends in India have shown a quantum jump in the
number of ‘census towns’ which are not statutorily declared as urban areas but
have acquired all characteristics of urban settlements. Lack of proper and timely
planning has led to an unplanned growth of these settlements. The article by
Anurima Mukherjee Basu and Rutool Sharma extensively reviews the planning
legislations, institutional framework and planning process of four states in India,
namely Gujarat, Rajasthan, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh. The authors are
of the view that conventional approaches to planning and development create
a dichotomy between urban and rural areas. The planning framework, types of
plans and plan contents are different for urban and rural areas.
The article by Asha Gupta reviews at length the concept of quality in higher
education and the way it is interpreted differently by different stakeholders.
Quality education implies not only equipping the students with requisite knowl-
edge and skills for their chosen career field but also to prepare them for lifelong
learning. Nowadays, quality in higher education is equated with the employability
of graduates. There is an added emphasis on quality in higher education institu-
tions in India under the New Education Policy announced by the Union Cabinet
on July 29, 2020. Indeed, the government aims at a ‘complete overhaul’ of the
higher education and regulatory system in India by introducing certain changes.
The said paper not only examines the changing perspectives of the quality in

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