New Delhi: The annual plan for Gujarat for 2013-14 has been finalized at Rs. 59,000 crore at a meeting held between Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia.

The Planning Commission has increased Rs 500 crore more against proposed original plan of Rs 58, 500 crore by state government. The current plan size, which is 15.68 percent higher than the previous year's plan size of Rs. 51,000 crore, reflects the state's strong financial position and vibrant development trajectory.

Gujarat, widely known as the growth engine of India, has shown a high growth trajectory by achieving an average of 10.24 percent growth rate from 2002-2012, which is highest among large states in India. The Gujarat Chief Minister said that space and speed of state development is sustainable and Gujarat's contribution for nation's growth is noteworthy.

"Gujarat is committed to apply planned development as a meaningful, relevant and effective process towards faster inclusive growth. The 42 per cent allocation earmarked in the Annual Plan for social sector will benefit the backward sections of the society," Modi said.

In the meeting with Planning Commission members, Modi apprised that his government has taken new initiatives and implemented newer technology-driven approach to ensure that the meaning of growth is translated into the lives of people. He further emphasized that improving HDI and inclusive growth, promoting better governance, empowering youth and women and ensuring active participation of people in governance remain major priorities.

The plan outlay of Rs. 3,850 crore in 2013-14 for the education sector is an unprecedented increase of 42.59 per cent over last year. The State Government's sustained efforts of the innovative Kanya Kelavani - Shala Praveshotsav in the last decade have created a huge improvement in the enrolment and bringing the drop out ratios, to 2.06 percent in primary education.

The Planning Commission has recommended the plan size of Rs.2,83,623 crore for the 12th Five Year Plan, against the 11th Five Year Plan size of Rs. 1,28,500 crore.

The Gujarat Chief Minister pointed out several issues which are pending with various Ministries in the Central Government, affecting the progress as well as the pace of development of the State and its financial resources. Despite repeated representations from State Government there has been no positive response from the GoI. It is unfortunate that some issues remain pending for years altogether.

In the meeting, many issues were informed by Modi through an audio-visual presentation, which include, the opaque and irrational policies relating to pricing and allocation of coal and natural gas have caused immense loss to national income, as about 5000 MW of installed power generation capacity lies unutilized in Gujarat alone.
Though Gujarat is a power-surplus state but in absence of a National Transmission Grid, the state cannot transfer surplus power to other power-deficit states.

Environment sub-group has not given permission for putting gates at the Sardar sarovar Dam. Therefore, Gujarat is losing benefits of additional irrigation of almost 7 lakh hectares and 40 per cent increase in power generation. It creates a loss of Rs. 3,788 crores per annum.

As the lack of coordination among the Central Ministries has become a bottleneck and development in the state is held up.The lack of clarity on environment clearance for mining has also stalled innumerable state power projects.

The Central Government has changed formula applied to calculation on royalty on crude oil. Therefore, Gujarat is suffering losses of Rs. 8,600 crores. CST compensation claims of Rs. 4500 crore are pending with GoI.
Gujarat Ministers Nitinbhai Patel, Saurabhbhai Patel, Chief Secretary Varesh Sinha and senior officers from Gujarat Government attended the meeting.

(Agencies)

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