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EVENTS

Advance date of presentation of budget, states Modi at Niti Aayog meet
Tuesday, 25 April, 2017, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Ashwani Maindola, New Delhi
At the third meeting of the Niti Aayog Governing Council, which took place in New Delhi, prime minister Narendra Modi stated that the date of presenting the budget should be advanced.

He added that in a country where agricultural income is exceedingly important, the budgetshould be prepared immediately after the receipt of agricultural incomes for the year.

Modi said that there have been suggestions to have the financial year from January to December. He urged states to take the initiative in this regard.

The objective of the meeting was to chalk out a newplan for the development of the country. This would be divided into three parts - long-term, strategic and short-termaction plan.

Arvind Panagariya, vice-chairman, Niti Aayog, stated that the government is working on a new approach, which envisages a 15-year long-term vision, accompanied by a seven-year strategy and a three-year action agenda.

One of the key agendas of the meeting was the agricultural economy and doubling the farmers’ incomes.

Panagariya said, “The state governments were asked to increase the spending on agriculture and the rural economy, amongst others.”

“NITI Aayog also reviewed the progress of the model agriculture and land leasing Acts and the change inthe agricultural produce market committee (APMC) Act,” he added.

Panagariya gave an outline of the draft Action Agenda, which was prepared with inputs from the states and circulated at the meeting.

He noted that there were over 300 specific action points that had been identified, covering the whole gamut of sectors.

The period of the Action Agenda coincided with the period of the 14th Finance Commission’s Award.

This gave stability to the funding estimates of both the Centre and the states. Panagariya solicited the inputs and support of the states in taking the vision forward.

Shivraj Singh Chouhan, chief minister, Madhya Pradesh, made a presentation on doubling of farmers’ incomes.

He touched on areas such as irrigation, technology generation and dissemination, policy and market reforms, electronic National Agriculture Market (e-NAM), livestock productivity, etc.

Ramesh Chand, member, agriculture, NITI Aayog,elaborated on some of the steps needed for doubling farmers’ incomes and spoke of the various elements of the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, such as the Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme, Har Khet Ko Pani, and Per Drop, More Crop.
 
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