THE LOCAL SELF-GOVERNMENT IN THE DISTRICT IS CONDUCTED BY VARIOUS BODIES such as the village panchayats, municipalities and the Zilla Parishad enjoying local autonomy in different degrees. The progress of these institutions has been in three spheres. Firstly, in regard to their constitution, from fully or partly nominated bodies, they have now become entirely elective. Secondly, their franchise, which had gone on widening with the enactment of the Bombay Local Authorities, Adult Franchise and Removal of Reservation of Seats Act (XVII of 1950), has reached the widest limit possible, viz., universal adult franchise.

Prior to 1950, reservation of seats was provided in the municipalities and in the District Local Board for women, Muhammedans, Christians, Anglo-Indians, Harijans and backward tribes and in the village panchayats for women, Muhammedans, Harijans and backward tribes. The enactment mentioned above abolished the reservation of seats for Muhammedans, Christians and Anglo-Indians, but continued it for ten years from the commencement of the Constitution of India (i.e.. till 25th January 1960) for women, the scheduled castes and the scheduled tribes, which more or less represent Harijans and backward tribes. Thirdly, wider and wider powers have been gradually conferred on local bodies for the administration of the area under their charge.

The realisation of the aims behind the creation of local self-governing institutions has been achieved with the advent of the Zilla Parishads after the enactment known as the Maharashtra Zilla Parishads and Panchayat Samitis Act, 1961.