The government is set to bring down the curtains on the Nehruvian legacy: the National Development Council (NDC).
- The Cabinet will, in early January, take up its closure and also pass a resolution for transferring its powers to the Governing Council of the NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
National Development Council
- The National Development Council, set up on 6 August, 1952 by an executive order of the government, served as “the highest decision-making authority” in the country on development matters.
- One of the most significant of its decisions was the creation (as part of the Gadgil-Mukherjee exercise) of “special category” of States, and the criteria for determining whether a State could receive the status and related financial support from the Centre.
- The National Development Council was set up by a Cabinet resolution.
- Initially, it comprised the Prime Minister, the Chief Ministers of all States and the members of the Planning Commission. In the first meeting of the NDC held on 8-9 November 1952, its first chairman and India’s first Prime Minister Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru stated that the NDC is essentially a forum for “intimate cooperation” between State governments and the Centre for all the tasks of national development.
- It was on recommendations of the Administrative Reforms Commission that the NDC was reconstituted and its functions redefined on October 7, 1967.
- The reconstituted NDC comprised of the Prime Minister, all the Union Cabinet Ministers, the Chief Ministers of all States and Union Territories and the Members of the Planning Commission.
- The Delhi Administration is represented in the Council by the Lt. Governor and the Chief Executive Councillor, and the remaining Union Territories by their respective Administrators.
- In the reconstituted Council, the Secretary of the Planning Commission acted as Secretary to the NDC.
- In all, 56 meetings of the NDC have been held, the last being on 22nd October 22, 2011 to consider the approach to the 12th Plan.
NITI Aayog Functions UPSC
- To evolve a shared vision of national development priorities sectors and strategies with the active involvement of States in the light of national objectives
- To foster cooperative federalism through structured support initiatives and mechanisms with the States on a continuous basis, recognizing that strong States make a strong nation
- To develop mechanisms to formulate credible plans at the village level and aggregate these progressively at higher levels of government
- To ensure, on areas that are specifically referred to it, that the interests of national security are incorporated in economic strategy and policy
- To pay special attention to the sections of our society that may be at risk of not benefitting adequately from economic progress
- To design strategic and long term policy and programme frameworks and initiatives, and monitor their progress and their efficacy. The lessons learnt through monitoring and feedback will be used for making innovative improvements, including necessary mid-course corrections
- To provide advice and encourage partnerships between key stakeholders and national and international like-minded Think tanks, as well as educational and policy research institutions.
- To create a knowledge, innovation and entrepreneurial support system through a collaborative community of national and international experts, practitioners and other partners.
- To offer a platform for resolution of inter-sectoral and inter departmental issues in order to accelerate the implementation of the development agenda.
- To maintain a state-of-the-art Resource Centre, be a repository of research on good governance and best practices in sustainable and equitable development as well as help their dissemination to stake-holders
- To actively monitor and evaluate the implementation of programmes and initiatives, including the identification of the needed resources so as to strengthen the probability of success and scope of delivery
- To focus on technology upgradation and capacity building for implementation of programmes and initiatives
- To undertake other activities as may be necessary in order to further the execution of the national development agenda, and the objectives mentioned above
- The NITI Aayog is the successor in interest to the Planning Commission.