Odisha Government To Restructure The State Planning Board

Odisha government is planning to restructure the State Planning Board which has remained ‘dormant’ for several years. Sources claim that the restructuring is likely to be on the lines of the Niti Aayog and with an emphasis on the Chief Minister’s 5Ts (Transparency, Technology, Transparency, Teamwork, Time and Transformation) mantra.

Up until now, deputy chairpersons and members have been appointed to the Board regularly but they have failed to conduct any meetings for the last 12 years. However, the State Government has recently appointed ministers and ruling party MLAs as chairpersons of the District Planning Committees (DPCs) of all 30 districts.

Several committees in different sectors including agriculture, industry, infrastructure, and women empowerment will be supervised by the restructured board. In numerous written replies during the Budget session of Assembly, the Government had admitted that there were no board meetings held though all posts were filled up. The opposition parties targeted the ruling party alleging that the State Planning Board had turned out to be a means of rehabilitation of political leaders.

“If the State government wants to set up sub-committees with focus on its priority sectors, the government should accept the recommendations of the experts on such priority sectors as it will be more effective than the recommendations made by the concerned department,” said RN Das, former advisor of the State Planning Board.