The Union government on 10 July 2013 announced disbanding of the Rural Development Agency (DRDA), the body which looks after implementation of anti-poverty programmes of Rural Development Ministry.
The agency will now be given a new function to perform its role under zila parishads, the local elected bodies at the district level. The decision to disband the DRDA was taken on the recommendation of a committee represented under the chairmanship of V Ramchandran, Chairmen- Emeritus, Centre for Management Development, Thiruvananthapuram with the purpose of strengthening and professionalising DRDA to meet the challenge of rural development in the present context.
The District Rural Development Agencies (DRDAs) were set up as independent societies in 1980 and since then have been principal organs at the district level to oversee the implementation of the ministry's anti-poverty programmes.
The DRDA is supposed to function now as professional units, professional cells, and professional divisions of the zila parishads and will not have a separate independent, autonomous existence through the Society's Act.
The government in its announcement asserted that, as of 1 April 2014, the DRDAs as constituted under the Society's Act will not exist instead there would be state rural development agencies to deal with the issues like staffing and functioning of the district rural development planning units.