Five Eventful Years - Moneylife

Five Eventful Years - Moneylife


Bottom-Up Approach

This is with regard to “NITI Aayog: A Stronger & More Powerful Body” by Sucheta Dalal. Media analysis, so far, has not gone deep into the rationale for revamping the Planning Commission which has come about as part of the reform process. But for the change in name and the announcement in Narendra Modi’s maiden Independence Day speech, perhaps the changes would not have been criticised by the mainstream media or Opposition parties. The previous regime has damaged the system silently, like the withdrawal of pension scheme. After Nehru, planning has remained an arithmetical exercise factoring in whatever was happening in the economy without much involvement of, or concern for, those affected by planning.

The new dispensation, which claims to be a ‘bottom up’ approach, hopefully, will allow greater participation of stakeholders at and ensure distributive justice. So far, higher share of resources have been cornered by more developed geographical areas; the development needs of states which did not have a ‘hold’ at the Centre were neglected. By and large, the change takes care to retain the essential role played by the erstwhile Planning Commission while bringing focus on decentralisation and wider role for states.

A responsible Opposition, instead of ‘crying foul’, should do more homework and suggest corrections where they feel the revamp goes against the broad interests of the country and the people.
MG Warrier, online comment


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