The government's think tank NITI Aayog that replaced the Planning Commission in 2015 under the Prime Minister Narendra Modi government will return if the Congress is voted to power this year, the party's chief Rahul Gandhi tweeted on Friday.
"If voted to power, we will scrap the NITI Aayog. It has served no purpose other than making marketing presentations for the PM and fudging data," Rahul Gandhi tweeted on Friday.
"We will replace it with a lean Planning Commission whose members will be renowned economists and experts with less than 100 staff," he said.
If voted to power, we will scrap the NITI Aayog. It has served no purpose other than making marketing presentations for the PM & fudging data.- Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) March 29, 2019
We will replace it with a lean Planning Commission whose members will be renowned economists & experts with less than 100 staff.
The NITI Aayog or National Institution for Transforming India, whose chairman is PM Modi, is the premier policy think tank of the centre that provides both directional and policy inputs. The think tank on its website says it's an important evolutionary change from the past and acts as the quintessential platform of the government to bring states to act together in national interest, and "thereby fosters cooperative federalism".
The Planning Commission, among its functions, included making massive plans for the most effective and balanced utilisation of the country's resources.
Taking a dig at Rahul Gandhi's announcement, Union Minister VK Singh questioned the effectiveness of the Planning Commission. "Your party was in power for 60 odd years, and your family's version of Planning Commission didn't deliver much," VK Singh tweeted.
"Rahul Gandhi, rather than talking about breaking down institutions or tearing up ordinances, think about what you can contribute to the country. Tough ask, eh?" the BJP leader said.
NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar faces a notice from the Election Commission over his remarks criticising the Congress's election promise of minimum income support for the poor. The election body earlier this week said his comments violated the poll code which prohibits officials to support the government. Mr Kumar was to reply to the notice by Thursday, but he sought time till April 5.