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The government has decided to ask secretaries of all ministries to share their five-year plans with the Prime Minister’s Office instead of letting it be decided by the Planning Commission.
From next week, all Union ministries would make presentations on select targets to Prime Minister Narendra Modi suggesting “realistic ways” to achieve them in the five-year span of the current government and within the available resources.
The exercise will steer clear of figures and graphics and is expected to focus on policy and regulatory hurdles that block each sector and bereft of jargons, an official connected with the exercise said. It is also an indication that there would be no large scale changes at the secretary level in the government, post Budget.
“The ministries will be expected to steer clear from extending sweeping suggestions to difficult issues and would also refrain from giving one-size-fits-all solutions to vexed matters,” the official said.
The presentations this time will build on the one organised earlier by the Cabinet secretariat for the Prime Minister.
Planning Commission member secretary, Sindhushree Khullar, would vet the presentations first and would also intersperse them with the Plan panel’s inputs on the key infrastructure sectors including roads, ports and energy sectors like coal and power.
At least two secretaries told The Indian Express that during the earlier round of presentations, the Prime Minister and his team had asked them for feedback, which would now be built into the fresh set.
“The brief is clear. Instead of presenting an omnibus plan that covers everything, we have to focus on a few deliverable ones, only,” said one of the secretaries. It will be counterproductive to flag every issue since on each of them the PMO will now ask for regular feedback on progress made. The PM would expect the secretaries to come out with “credible solutions” to the problems of their respective sectors.
Coming after the Union Budget, the secretaries are expected to highlight the financial implications of each project for both lapsable and non-lapsable funds. The social sector ministries are expected to suggest the deliverables for the centrally-funded programmes and ways to achieve them in a time-bound manner. While regulatory and dispute resolution issues would dominate the presentations of infrastructure ministries, the PMO it is expected would ask them to cut down costs.
For instance, the finance ministry is expected spell out the contours of 3P India, an institution, which he promised in the Budget to provide support to