NITI Aayog Meeting Focuses on Cooperative Federalism

The Vice-Chairman, NITI Aayog, Rajiv Kumar addressing media after the 4th meeting of Governing Council of NITI Aayog, in New Delhi on June 17, 2018. The CEO, NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant is also seen.
The Vice-Chairman, NITI Aayog, Rajiv Kumar addressing media after the 4th meeting of Governing Council of NITI Aayog, in New Delhi on June 17, 2018. The CEO, NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant is also seen.

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The fourth meeting of the Governing Council of NITI Aayog was held under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Sunday.

It was attended by 23 Chief Ministers and the Lieutenant Governor of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, apart from Union Ministers, who are ex-officio members and special invitees.

At the end of the day-long deliberations, the Prime Minister highlighted the importance of the Governing Council of NITI Aayog as a platform to inspire cooperative federalism, stressing the need for effective center-state cooperation to advance development outcomes and achieve double-digit growth for India.

He called upon States to fix growth targets for their economies as the world looks towards India soon becoming a USD 5 trillion economy. He advised the States to pay special attention to expanding their exports and attracting export oriented investment while organizing their investments summits and events.

Welcoming the constructive discussion and suggestions made by various Chief Ministers, the Prime Minister assured the gathering that these suggestions would be seriously considered in the course of decision-making. NITI Aayog was asked to follow up with the States within three months on the actionable points made by them.

The Prime Minister also called upon the Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Sikkim, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, and Andhra Pradesh to work together to make recommendations on a coordinated policy approach on the subject of ‘Agriculture and MNREGA’.

He also encouraged States to explore opportunities to increase corporate investment in agriculture, such as in food processing, warehousing, and logistics.

He reiterated the Union Government’s commitment to provide 100% coverage of seven flagship schemes to 45,000 additional villages and those in 115 Aspirational Districts by August 15th, 2018. He urged States to identify ‘aspirational blocks’ to take development to the grassroots.

NITI Aayog will soon invite States for consultations on how to improve the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ in India and also to improve the ‘Ease of Living’ for the common man.

The Prime Minister also emphasized that States may set up their own committees to look into ‘Ease of Living’ for the common citizen, which is the need of the hour.

The Governing Council of NITI Aayog comprises the Prime Minister of India, Chief Ministers of all the States and Union Territories with Legislatures and Lt. Governor of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and four Union Ministers as ex-officio members and three Union Ministers as Special Invitees.

It is the premier body tasked with evolving a shared vision of national development priorities, sectors and strategies with the active involvement of States in shaping the development narrative.

Photo courtesy: Press Information Bureau

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Rakesh Raman