Notes on the Provincial and Municipal Administration of the Mauryas

Essays about the provincial and municipal administration of the Mauryas. What were the additions made by Asoka in the Maurya administrative system? - Answered

Provincial Administration:

The Empire was divided into a number of provinces, each being administered by a provincial governor. Most important provinces were administered by the viceroys who were appointed from amongst the numbers of the royal family.

Taxila, Ujjain, Tosali and Subarnagiri were the four important provincial capitals. Governors administering smaller areas were selected from amongst the local people.

The elaborate system the Maurya administration provided for effective supervision of the administration through small units.

As such each of the provinces was divided into a few districts and the districts again into smaller units. The lowest administrative unit was village.

Municipal Administration:

An important characteristic feature of the Maurya administrative set-up was its municipal administration.

Indeed, the municipal administration of the cities evoked the admiration even of the foreigners. The Municipal administration was conducted by a board consisting of thirty mergers.

These members were divided into six committees or groups of five each and each committee had separate functions.

Additions made by Asoka:

Asoka did not bring about any fundamental change in the system of administration introduced by his predecessor Chandragupta Maurya.

Yet he introduced certain new elements in the administrative organization after there had been a total change in Asoka's ideal of kingship as a result of the Kalinga war.

It is known from the Asoka edicts that Asoka appointed a new class of officials like Rajnka, Yuta and Dhamamahamatra for the material and spiritual uplift of the people.

Besides, a new set of officers, called prativedakas, were employed throughout the realm to keep Asoka informed about the happenings all around.