Centrally sponsored schemes likely to be reduced to 30

Centrally sponsored schemes likely to be reduced to 30
The number of centrally sponsored schemes (CSS) is likely to be reduced to 30 from 72 with a Chief Ministers' Sub-Group of NITI Aayog reaching a broad consensus on the issue.

The panel has also recommended to increase the share of flexi funds to 25 per cent from the current 10 per cent.

"There is a broad consensus on reducing number of CSS and having two types of schemes," panel's convenor Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said after the meeting of the sub-group here at NITI Aayog.

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 deliberate...prepare a final draft by July 5. After seeking all chief ministers consent on the draft, the final recommendations will be submitted to the Prime Minister," said Chouhan.

The panel has met for four times at an interval of almost one month. The last meeting was held on May 28 in Bhopal.

Based on earlier meetings, a draft report was presented today to the members for comments, which was prepared by a committee headed by National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog's CEO Sindhushree Khullar.

The draft report suggested centrally sponsored schemes to be divided into two broad groups. The first, Core Scheme, comprising of national development agenda that includes legislatively backed schemes such as MNREGA, Swachh Bharat Mission and Mid Day Meal. The final list will decided later.

The second is Optional Schemes for social protection and social inclusion. Based on the division of schemes into two part, the number of CSS would be 30, the draft stated.
According to draft, the centre's share would not be less than 50 per cent.

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

In each of the identified Core Schemes, ordinarily, Centre will implement umbrella programme having a large number of components with a uniform funding pattern to suit states' requirement.

For general category states, under Core Schemes, Centre and state would share funding in the ration 60:40 per cent. However in schemes where Centre's share is below 60 per cent, it will remain the same.

Under the Optional Schemes for general category states, the funding would be shared equally. But in schemes where Centre's share is below 50 per cent, it will remain the same.

For 11 special category states under Core Sector scheme, Centre and state sharing will be in the ratio of 90:10 per cent while for optional schemes it would 80:20 per cent.

The draft report also said that for all projects under CSS in which 30 per cent of the work has been completed, funding should be continued.

The sharing pattern under which the project was approved should also continue till March 2017. If the projects remain incomplete even thereafter, state would have to complete the project using their own funds.

The draft report also says that the schemes in sector including poverty elimination, drinking water, Swachh Bharat, rural electrification, women and child health nutrition, Housing for All and urban transformation should be give priority for realising 'Vision 2022'.

As per the draft, the rationalisation of schemes and restructure funding patter of CSS should be implemented from 2016-17.

The sub-group was constituted by the Prime Minister in March this year in pursuance of decision taken in the first meeting of governing council of NITI Ayog a month earlier.

Members of the Chief Ministers' Sub-Group include Madhya Pradesh (Convener), Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Kerala, Manipur, Nagaland, Rajasthan, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh and Lt Governor of Andaman & Nicobar islands.

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