"Our government stands by the principle of cooperative federalism, empowering states, least number of central schemes and more state schemes," Jaitley said while replying to a debate in the Lok Sabha.
    
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had called meeting of all chief ministers on Sunday to deliberate on the structure of the new body which would replace the Planning Commission where a majority view was in favour of decentralisation of power.
    
Advocating more autonomy for the states, the finance minister said: "...allow states to rule...because they have as much mandate to rule their states as much as we have to rule Delhi. We will maintain the spirit of cooperative federalism."
    
He added: "Even the Congress Chief Ministers (during the meet) that I heard, subject of their speech was decentralisation, cooperative federalism. One size does not fit all. Let the states decide and give more power to states."
    
He further said, "But because probably you (Congress) told them that it is our baby, the first sentence used to be, Planning Commission did a very good job. It should not be replaced. The rest of speech of even regional parties was broadly the same."
    
Jaitley said: "Do you only pay lip sympathy to cooperative federalism that you have a central government structure by an executive order or you have structure where centre,states and experts decide to minimise the number of central schemes."
    
The government concluded the consultations for deciding on the structure of the new body with Chief Ministers on Sunday. It is expected that the new body will be in place by the January 26.

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