The book initiates a scholarly endeavor towards the discussion on the participation of marginalized communities in governance enacted by the New Panchayat Raj Act in India. It enhances the understanding of participation of dalits in the process of village self-governance and provides a real scenario found in villages. The pejorative and casteist notion underpinned in the emancipation of dalits are documented with empirical field study providing an overt picture of both negative and positive impacts of the dalit leadership in panchayats. The book draws a historic evaluation of panchayat institutions since the vedic period till today and reviews the working status of dalit representatives from various studies, critically analyses their working conditions, problems-faced and the achievements of the Dalit presidents in village Panchayats in Tamil Nadu along with few case studies. This book will assure be a good monograph for the academicians who are interested in dalit studies, local government, village studies and social exclusion and inclusion. It will also prove to be a good resource guide and handbook for the Field activists and social workers.