NITI Aayog CM panel looks to reduce central schemes

RSTV Bureau

ShivRaj_NitiThe NITI Aayog sub-committee of Chief Ministers working on rationalisation of Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS) has unanimously agreed to reduce the number of schemes to 30 from the existing 72. The panel of Chief Ministers reached this broad consensus in a meet held over the subject in New Delhi on Saturday. The issue will be finalised after another round of meeting on the 5th July after which the NITI Aayog sub-committee will submit its report to the Prime Minister.

“There is a broad consensus on reducing number of CSS and having two types of schemes,” Shivraj Singh Chouhan, CM of Madhya Pradesh said. Chouhan is also the convenor of the sub-group and had presided over the meeting on Saturday.

The recommendations will be finalised by July 5 and consent of all members would be sought before submitting the final report to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Some more suggestions have come. I have formed a committee of NITI Aayog officials headed by its CEO. It will prepare its final draft by July 5. After seeking all chief ministers’ consent on the draft, the final recommendations will be submitted to the Prime Minister,” Chouhan said after the conclusion of meeting at New Delhi.

This was fourth meeting of the panel and based on its earlier meetings, a draft report was presented to the members for their feedback and comments. The draft report was prepared by a committee headed by National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog’s CEO Sindhushree Khullar.

Apart from reducing the number of schemes, the draft report also suggested the CSS to be divided into two broad groups. The first, Core Schemes comprising of national development agenda that includes legislatively backed schemes such as MNREGA, Swachh Bharat Mission and Mid-Day Meal.

And the second, Optional Schemes, aiming at the social protection and social inclusion.

However, this list too will be finalsed after the 5th July meeting.

Today’s meeting was attended by the Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, and Nagaland among others.

The draft report also recommended that funding should continue for all those projects under CSS in which 30 per cent of the work has been completed. The sharing pattern under which the project was approved should also continue till March 2017. But it the projects remain incomplete even thereafter, the state government would have to complete the project using their own funds.

The panel also discussed how the schemes in sector including poverty elimination, drinking water, Swachh Bharat, rural electrification, women and child health nutrition, Housing for All and Urban transformation be given a priority for realising ‘Vision 2022’.

(With inputs from the PTI)