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Poor economic growth in India in 2013 derails Planning Commission's target in 12th Plan

Dec 30 2013, 11:33 IST
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It will require a very sharp acceleration in economic growth in the later years to achieve an average of 8 per cent: Planning Commission's Montek Singh Ahluwalia It will require a very sharp acceleration in economic growth in the later years to achieve an average of 8 per cent: Planning Commission's Montek Singh Ahluwalia
SummaryEconomic growth woes in India due to global cues, may cut target: Planning Commission's Montek Singh Ahluwalia

good agricultural production this year.

"I expect to see recovery in the coming quarters. Exactly how much that it will produce, is difficult to predict right now. But we are definitely on a turnaround path," Ahluwalia said.

Planning Commission Secretary Sindhushree Khullar was of the view that the year was productive and key impediments in the infrastructure sector were successfully removed.

"2013 calender year was very productive for us. In 2012, the NDC approved the 12th Plan, so for us, it's a very big milestone of getting all the chief ministers to endorse the plan. So, it's (2013) a very eventful year.

"I think we have done reasonably well. We have been very active on the reviews, following up... a lot of work in the infrastructure sector," Khullar said.

The Commission during the year also set up a committee under one of its members, B K Chaturvedi, to look into the possibility of utilisation of surplus coal from captive mines by power firms so as to tide over energy related issues.

The Committee will possibly submit its report to the government soon.

During the year, the Planning Commission also set up an Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) under Ajay Chibber with an objective to improve the effectiveness of government policies and programmes by assessing their impact and outcomes.

According to officials in the Planning Commission, the immediate impact of the IEO will not be felt, but in the long run it will help in making significant policy changes.

Although, the entire focus during the year had been to revive economic growth and remove policy bottlenecks, the Planning Commission for once again was targeted on poverty data, evoking sharp criticism from opposition and experts.

The poverty data by the Commission in July suggested that people spending over Rs 33.33 per day in urban and Rs 27.20 per day in rural areas could not be considered as poor.

Earlier in 2012 also, the Commission had said that people with a daily consumption expenditure of Rs 28.35 in cities and Rs 22.42 in villages were above the poverty line.

Among others, the Planning Commission also drew attention from various quarters for turning the Yojana Bhawan virtually into a fortress and making it inaccessible during visits of high profile people like Bill Gates, state Chief Ministers -- Narendra Modi, Mamata Banerjee and J Jayalalithaa citing security reasons.

In few of the unexpected events, the Commission witnessed

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