5 Feb 2008
The Annual Plan outlay for Uttarakhand for the year 2008-09 was finalized at a meeting, here today, between the Deputy Chairman Planning Commission, Shri Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Uttaranchal Shri B C Khanduri. The Annual Plan size was agreed at Rs. 4775 crores. This includes additional Central assistance of Rs. 300 crores for infrastructure needed for Kumbh Mela and SAF Winter Games and other projects of special interest to the State.
Commenting on the performance of the State, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission, Mr. Ahluwalia said that growth rate was good and even plan expenditure during the tenth plan is encouraging but per capita income remained rather low. Achievement in the agriculture sector was commendable. However, the poverty level was much higher than those at the all India level or in Himachal Pradesh in both rural and urban areas. This shows that topmost priority should be given to creating livelihood opportunities.
Appreciable achievements have been reached in the tourism sector during tenth Plan period and needs to be carried forward as the State has immense potential for becoming a world class tourist centre. The State offers all types of tourism like pilgrimage, cultural, adventure, wildlife and eco-tourism. To develop high value tourism, the State should focus on developing adequate infrastructure facilities at the destinations and circuits.
On industrial policy, it was pointed out that the policy seemingly was driven by subsidy. Efforts should be to have a comprehensive plan of action for identified industries. Benefits of concessions should reach far-flung areas.
Briefing the Commission on the pace of development, Mr. Khanduri said that emphasis would continue on social sector. This is clearly reflected in both Eleventh Plan and Annual Plan proposal. Over 37 percent of plan outlay would be ear-marked for social services. He said efforts are on to further accelerate development of infrastructure and for this purpose four projects are being executed through external aid. These would be in roads and bridges, urban infrastructure, power and tourism development. He sought additional support from the Centre for Haridwar Maha Kumbh in 2010, South Asia Winger games and additional grant to support earthquake affected people.
Mr. Khanduri said that the Centre should supplement efforts to bring at par with other developed States and in view of the state of industrialization, tax holiday period should be extended upto 2013. he also sought Central support in tackling problem of silting of dams.
News Source: http://pib.nic.in