In his maiden Independence Day speech at Red Fort as the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi announced plans to replace the Planning Commission of India with a new organization because it is lost it’s relevance.
“The times have changed from when the Planning Commission was created”, said Modi while revealing his intentions.
The Planning Commission is an institution in the Government of India, which formulates India’s Five-Year Plans. It was established in accordance with article 39 of the constitution which is a part of directive principles of state policy.
Mr Modi stunned members of the commission last year as Gujarat Chief Minister by turning up at a meeting with a video that accused them of saddling states with one-size-fits-all policies. The agency is resented by state governments because it controls allocation of central funds to them.
The Planning Commission has faced criticism for spending 35 lakh rupees (US$58,000) to renovate two blocks of toilets, while declaring a very low, and arguably unrealistic, threshold of poverty of a monthly consumption of Rs. 859.6 (US$14) in urban and Rs.672.8 (US$11) in rural areas.
After Modi took over, a government-backed report measured the effectiveness of government schemed had recommended to replace the Planning Commission with a think-tank. The report accused the Planning Commission for confronting attempts to reform it to bring it in line with the needs of a modern economy.