States demand bigger role in planning central schemes

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 08, 2015 23:49 IST

A common thread among chief ministers cutting across political lines at the NITI Aayog meeting on Sunday was that they wanted a say in framing of central schemes and a bigger chunk of central funds for them.

The states have repeatedly complained that the decision making process at the Centre was extremely slow and the fund release did not help in proper planning and execution of schemes.

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhra Raje said states should be allowed to devise schemes as per regional needs and the Centre should provide wherewithal for the same.

She also asked for more untied funds and asked the PM to convert the NITI Aayog into a platform where grievances of the states are redressed.

Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik expressed concern at the arbitrary budget cuts under the existing central schemes. He also sought better flow of funds for poverty alleviation in the state.

Gujarat chief minister Anandiben Patel emphasised on regional balanced development as a national priority and wanted to know the funds that would be available to the states in the remaining two years of 12th five year plan ending in April 2017.

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav wanted half of the central fund to be released to the states as first instalment for better outcome of the expenditure.

He also urged that the process of allocation of funds to states be made more transparent and ensure that there was no room for “discretion” while allocating funds to the states.

Tamil Nadu chief minister Pannerselvam demanded that funds under the Direct Benefit Transfer scheme should be routed through state governments for efficient delivery, keeping in mind cooperative federalism. He said the NITI Aayog should prepare a blue print for action with clearly laid down goals and objectives to be achieved within a given time-frame and address the basic issues that confront the economy.

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