After 46 years of existence, UP state planning commission losing relevance
Ever since the Narendra Modi government at the Centre scrapped the erstwhile Planning Commission of India to replace it with NITI Ayog in 2014-15, the fate of the UP state planning commission has remained uncertain.lucknow Updated: Jul 20, 2018 13:39 IST
Ever since the Narendra Modi government at the Centre scrapped the erstwhile Planning Commission of India to replace it with NITI Ayog in 2014-15, the fate of the UP state planning commission has remained uncertain.
The Uttar Pradesh government had set up the State Planning Commission under the chairmanship of the chief minister in 1972 to assess the state’s physical, financial and manpower resources, draft annual plans and five year plans and to ensure conformity of the state’s plans with the national plan.
After 46 years of existence, the commission has lost its relevance in the absence of a Planning Commission that was instrumental in setting up of state commissions.
Though chief minister Yogi Adityanath continues to be the ex-officio chairman of the state planning commission, the post of deputy chairman remains vacant since the BJP government came to power in 2017.
“The post of deputy chairman of state planning commission has been vacant since the Yogi Adityanath government took over. We have been left with less than 50 per cent staff now. The state planning commission has stopped drafting annual plans and five year plans. The staff members are often involved in other tasks,” a senior officer in the state government said on condition of anonymity.
A proposal to reorganise and rename the commission is considered from time to time but nothing concrete has been worked out.
“Samajwadi Party was ruling in the state when the Modi government decided to scrap the Planning Commission. The SP government in the state did not want to make any move. A proposal to reform the commission has been considered from time to time. We hope something will be worked out in the coming months,” the officer added.
Although the state planning commission is not drafting any annual plan, it continues to be an important support mechanism to the state government and providing necessary inputs to NITI Ayog.
“As the state planning commission is a part of state planning department we give our opinion on various issues to the state government. We also provide necessary feedback to NITI Ayog and act as a link between different departments. In the recent exercise aimed at pruning the number of departments, a move to merge the planning department with programme implementation department etc. has also been initiated. A final decision is yet to be taken,” the officer added.