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PM Modi meets CMs, discusses plan panel revamp

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is chairing a meeting of chief ministers in Delhi to discuss various aspects relating to restructuring of the Planning Commission.

india Updated: Dec 07, 2014 16:39 IST


Chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu asked for more say for states in policy formulation at the meeting for the revamp of the Planning Commission chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday.

UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav said the new entity should be a transparent and impartial mechansim which would focus on the basic elements of socialism.

Tamil Nadu chief minister O Panneerelvam welcomed PM Modi's proposal to bring states to the centre of the development process.

The states were particularly 'at the mercy' of the Central departments, and were not treated as equal partners in governance and development process, "but as mere local supplicants," Panneerselvam said.

The Prime Minister in his Independence Day speech had had announced that the Commission, set up in 1950 at a time when government gave public sector the commanding heights of economy, would be abolished and replaced with a more relevant institution.

Congress-ruled Arunachal Pradesh however opposed the move to do away with the Planning Commission, saying it is a "national spirit" that must be continued.

Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki described the plan panel as a single window for small states to air grievances on issues like regional aspirations and centre-state disputes

Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah and West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee skipped the meeting. State finance minister Amit Mitra is representing West Bengal.

Earlier during the day, the Planning Commission suggested that its replacement body should be structured to meet the need of changing economic paradigm and comprise sectoral experts and states' representative.

In her presentation before the group comprising Modi and chief ministers, Planning Secretary Sindhushree Khullar said that the new institution may have 8-10 regulars or executive members with half of them representing the states.

Khullar in her presentation suggested that the new institution would have functions including monitoring and evaluation; programme project and scheme evaluation; cross-sectoral and inter-ministerial expertise and appraisal and monitoring of projects.

It is has been suggested that the new body would advise the Prime Minister on matters referred to it. Besides, it should act as think-tank and have network with universities and other institutions.

The new body could provide internal consultancy services to states and the Centre on different matters. It could also be used to design medium and long-term strategy.

"We will very soon set up a new institution in place of Planning Commission...the internal situation of the country has changed, global environment has changed... We need an institution of creative thinking and for optimum utilisation of youth capability," Modi had said.

The Commission had held meetings with experts to discuss the structure of the new institution that would ultimately replace it.

(With inputs from PTI)

First Published: Dec 07, 2014 12:55 IST

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