Institute for Social and Economic Change

Established in 1972 by Professor V K R V Rao, ISEC is an All-India Institute for Interdisciplinary Research and Training in the Social Sciences

Fixers, Patronage, ‘Fixing,’ and Local Governance in Karnataka – isec

Fixers, Patronage, ‘Fixing,’ and Local Governance in Karnataka


Various individuals, including party officials, elected representatives of panchayats, and sundry persons carry out functions designated as ‘fixing’. These activities are carried out by fixers for rural people, mainly in relation to government agencies and departments, which they would otherwise have found difficult to accomplish on their own. A fee is charged for such work. Elites (‘big men’ of the village) too are occasionally engaged in fixing. An essential distinction we have made is to emphasise the payment of a fee for whatever assignment is carried out. The function, rather than the person, has been given primary importance in analysing ‘fixers’ and ‘fixing’

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