Modi to finalise new body replacing Plan panel next week

Modi to finalise new body replacing Plan panel next week

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will finalise plans for a new body to replace the Planning Commission next week, ahead of a conference of chief ministers in this regard on December 7. 

He is understood to have decided on calling the new body the Policy Commission (Neeti Aayog) instead of the Planning Commission (Yojana Aayog).

Modi will head the new commission and choose a vice-chairman, who will be tasked to run the body. The prime minister, who had invited suggestions from the public in this regard, is said to have told his aides that he is keen that three or four departments are brought under the Policy Commission, which will have a vice-chairman instead of a deputy chairman as in the case of the Planning Commission.

Aides say the Policy Commission will also double up as the secretariat for the Inter-State Council (ISC) to discuss Centre-state issues. Modi wants the new body to prepare new plans and undertake its evaluation too like the Planning Commission but it won’t decide on fund disbursement, which has already been given to the finance ministry, the aides said.

The new body could have four secretaries – each handling one of the four divisions: Inter-State Council, Direct Benefit Transfer, Unique Identification Authority of India and Programme Evaluation Division.

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