Weak governance is due to uninformed and disengaged elected representatives, and not because of existing systems and policies. Lack of tools to facilitate effective interaction between citizens and local government demands an urgent need to address inefficiencies in work processes and bridge information gaps.
Praja conducts research to collate and disseminate information on civic issues to citizens, media and government administration. It works closely with elected representatives to identify and address inefficiencies in their work processes, bridge the information gap, and help them take corrective measures.
What We Do
Praja Dialogue is a tool created to engage three constituents of democracy:
• Elected representatives (Councilors, MLAs, MPs)
• Government (includes administration)
• Citizens (includes media and citizen groups)
The objective is to increase interaction between citizens and elected representatives and thus foster a democratic culture of asking questions, debating and having dialogue.
1) Collect information on:
- Elected representatives on their attendance, questions asked at the session (number, type and issue), and utilization of local area development fund;
- Status of civic issues by constituencies, such as education, health, crime, civic, housing and transport
2) Analyze the data to publish periodic white papers, monthly newsletters and annual report cards on performance of elected representatives
3) Dissemination of analysis through print media, symposiums and online media
4) Capacity building for elected representatives through one-on-one meetings and workshops to explain the analysis and help them take corrective measures, so they may perform better in their roles.
VOICES FROM THE GROUND
Nitai Mehta, Managing Trustee
• Head of Madhu Mehta Foundation
Partners and Funders
• Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative
• Centre for Civil Society
• Hansa Research
• Initiative for Change
• Pravin Gandhi College of Law
• Nirmala Niketan College
• Friedrich Naumann Stiftung
• Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation
• Ford Foundation
• Sir Dorabji Tata Trust
• Give India
Awards and Endorsements
• Pravinchandra Gandhi Award for excellence in public life, by Rotary Club of Bombay (2013-14)
• Praja’s work received about 400 media mentions in 2014-15