(Last Updated on : 06/11/2019)
The Indian Council of Act of 1861 introduced the policy of legislative devolution and Mayo's Resolution of 1870 on financial decentralisation was its likely consequence. Administrative suitability and financial severity instigated the Imperial Government to reassign to the management of provincial governments specific departments of administration, which, along with others, incorporated education, medical services and roads. The starting of local finances can be traced here. To stabilise their budgets the provincial governments were empowered to fall back on local taxation. Lord Mayo's resolution had delineated- "Local interest, supervision, and care are necessary to success in the management of the funds devoted to education, sanitation, medical relief, and local public works. The operation of this resolution in its full meaning and integrity will afford opportunities for the development of self-government, for strengthening municipal institution, and for the association of Natives and Europeans to a greater extent than heretofore in the administration of affairs".
Numerous provincial governments authorised municipal acts to execute the policy drafted. The Bengal District Board Cess Act, 1871 was the initiative towards implementing local self-government in pastoral Bengal. Parallel acts were passed in Madras, North-Western Provinces and Punjab.