CPI(M) Slams Govt Decision to Scrap Planning Commission

CPI(M) today attacked the BJP-led government for announcing the winding up of the Planning Commission without any discussion in Parliament and said this "arbitrary move" would only facilitate private capital profit maximisation at the cost of welfare programmes.

"Prime Minister Modi has announced that the Planning Commission would be wound up. This step has been publicly taken a day after the Parliament session ended, without any discussion in Parliament or consultation with political parties or other concerned entities," the CPI(M) Politburo said in a statement.

"The role of the Planning Commission has already been curtailed in the last two decades under liberalisation. What Modi has done is to give it a final burial," it said, adding that the decision was in line with the "prevailing neo-liberal view that there is no need even for a semblance of planning in a market-oriented economy."

Observing that the Modi Government has not spelt out what would be put in place of the Commission, the CPI(M) said this was "an arbitrary and ad hoc move that will only facilitate the further private capital profit maximisation at the expense of curtailing even the existing meagre resource allocation for peoples' welfare programmes."

The major Left party said, "If the Planning Commission itself is dismantled, the allocation for states will be decided by the Finance Ministry which will only lead to further centralisation and bring in political bias as far as the states are concerned."

It noted that the plan panel was tasked with certain allocation of resources under the plan, providing for a balanced development keeping in mind regional disparities and monitoring of important schemes and projects.

"Modi government claims that the Planning Commission was not in tune with the federal principle. That is why the CPI(M) had been advocating that the Planning Commission should be made an executive wing of the National Development Council so that it becomes a truly federal institution," it said.

CPI also attacked the government for planning to disband the Planning Commission, saying the Modi government "in spite of its talks about poverty is not for any inclusive growth. It is going to serve the interests of the corporate capital and big business. The brazen beginning in this direction is its declaration to dismantle the Planning Commission."

The abolition of the plan panel was "part of government policy to usher in full-fledged market economy, free for all to benefit the private corporates leading to anarchy in the system. It will result in development priorities and poverty alleviation getting lost. The nation will suffer badly," the CPI National Executive said in a statement.

The party said it would oppose the "retrograde" move of the Government and asked people to "resist the right reactionary shift in macro-level economic policies".

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