Public Policy Institutions for States

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    In News

    • Recently, States have approached the NITI Aayog, seeking its help to set up their own public policy institutions to boost development and drive inclusive growth.

    Key Points

    • State’s demand: 
      • Rajasthan, Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh have approached the NITI Aayog, seeking its help to set up their own public policy institutions to boost development and drive inclusive growth.
      • Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Assam and Maharashtra — have made similar requests to constitute state institutions for transformation, or SITs, along the lines of the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog
    • Reason for state institutions demand:
      • To give effect to the commitment of cooperative federalism

    State Support Mission

    • The State Support Mission has been conceived in view of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s clarion call for making India a developed country, or Viksit Bharat by 2047.
    • In July, NITI Aayog started working on a State Support Mission to assist states prepare development strategies. 
    • As part of the effort, the Maharashtra Institution for Transformation, or Mitra, was set up along the lines of NITI Aayog.
    • Under the mission, the central body will be supporting states to set up SITs or help the governments to “reimagine” the role of planning departments.
    • States are being provided with assistance to reimagine the role of their planning departments. Knowledge partners like the Indian Institutes of Technology and Indian Institutes of Management, have been identified, in states, to provide necessary assistance to the SITs.

    Challenges faced by the states currently 

    • Most states so far have done little to rejuvenate their planning departments/ boards, which earlier dealt with the Planning Commission and prepared parallel state five year-plans with the Centre.
    • Planning departments in most of the states with huge manpower are almost defunct and have no clarity what work they will do.
    • Health, education and infrastructure development are the responsibilities of state governments. There is a need for states to plan better to ensure meeting growing demand and ensure ease of doing business.

    Significance of the move

    • Increasing the role of states in GDP: The move is in recognition of the fact that except for sectors like defence, railways and highways, the national GDP growth is an aggregation of states rates of growth.
      • Health, education and skilling are primarily with the state government.
    • Sustained economic growth: State government’s role is critical to improving ease of doing business, land reforms, infrastructure development, credit flows and urbanisation.
    • State support mission: It will likely extend support to states including experts from IIMs and IITs to fulfil the ambitious target of making India a developed nation by 2047.
    • Lateral entry of professionals will be encouraged in SITs to undertake high-quality analytical work and policy recommendations.

    Way Ahead

    • SITs can play a crucial role in bringing various stakeholders, such as the private sector, and experts to address important state-specific issues. and work on strategies to carry out development work

    National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog)

    • About:
      • It was set up in 2015 to replace the Planning Commission.
      • It is an Executive Body (acts as a think tank and advisory body)
    • Objective: 
      • To foster the spirit of Cooperative and Competitive federalism through structured support initiatives on a continuous basis.
    • Composition of NITI Aayog:
      • Chairperson: Prime Minister of India
      • The Governing Council consists of the Chief Ministers of all the States and Lt. Governors of Union Territories in India.
        • The NITI Aayog’s governing council is the premier body tasked with evolving a shared vision of national priorities and strategies with the involvement of the States and Union Territories. 
        • It presents a platform to discuss inter-sectoral, inter-departmental and federal issues.
      • Regional Councils will be created to address particular issues and possibilities affecting more than one state.
        • These will be formed for a fixed term and summoned by the PM.
        • These will be chaired by the Chairperson of the NITI Aayog or his nominee.
      • Special invitees: Eminent experts, specialists with relevant domain knowledge, which will be nominated by the Prime Minister.
    • Full-time organizational framework:
      • Prime Minister as the Chairperson:
      • Vice-Chairperson (appointed by the Prime Minister)
      • Members:
        • Full-time
        • Part-time members on a rotational basis: Maximum of 2 members from foremost universities, leading research organizations, and other innovative organizations in an ex-officio capacity.
      • Ex Officio members: 
        • Maximum of 4 members of the Council of Ministers which is to be nominated by the Prime Minister.
      • Chief Executive Officer: 
        • The CEO will be appointed by the Prime Minister for a fixed tenure. 
        • He will be in the rank of Secretary to the Government of India.
    • Key Initiatives and Recent Achievements:
      • Aspirational Districts Scheme.
      • 3 Documents: 3-year action agenda, 7-year medium-term strategy paper and 15-year vision document.
      • Monitoring and Analysing Food and Agricultural Policies (MAFAP) programme in India
      • Promoted Zero Budget Natural Farming.
      • Promoting ‘Bhartiya Prakritik Krishi Paddhati’ programme under Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY).
      • Village Storage Scheme

    Source: LM