Published On: Sat, May 27th, 2023

Eight opposition CMs skip Niti Aayog meet chaired by PM Modi

New Delhi: As many as eight Chief Ministers of opposition ruled states did not attend the crucial eighth governing council meeting of Niti Aayog chaired by Prime Minister Modi.

The meeting was held at the new Convention Centre in Pragati Maidan

The theme of the meeting was ‘Viksit Bharat @2047: Role of Team India’. The meeting was held at the new Convention Centre in Pragati Maidan, New Delhi.

As the chairman of NITI Aayog, PM Modi presided over the meeting. According to reports, the key topics of the discussion were related to health, skill development, women empowerment and infrastructure development, with an aim to make India a developed nation by 2047. Among those who attended the meet includes Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma, Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, Arunachal CM Pema Khandu, Andhra Pradesh CM YS Jagan Reddy, Himachal Pradesh CM Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren, among CMs of other states.

Union Ministers including Rajnath Singh, Smriti Irani and Home Minister Amit Shah also attended the meeting.

Niti Aayog had earlier said that the day long meeting included deliberations on (i) Viksit Bharat@2047, (ii) Thrust on MSMEs, (iii) Infrastructure and Investments, (iv) Minimising Compliances, (v) Women Empowerment, (vi) Health and Nutrition, (vii) Skill Development, and (viii) Gati Shakti for area development and social infrastructure.

While the meeting saw participation from many Chief Ministers/Lt Governors of all States and Union Territories, Union Ministers as ex-officio Members, and the Vice Chairman and Members of NITI Aayog, seven chief ministers skipped the meeting.

Kerala’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Rajasthan’s Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, Delhi’s CM Arvind Kejriwal, Punjab’s CM Bhagwant Mann, Telangana’s CM K Chandrashekhar Rao, West Bengal’s CM Mamata Banerjee and Bihar’s CM Nitish Kumar skipped the meeting. CM Gehlot has cited health reasons for not attending the meeting, while CM Vijayan has not given any specific reason for his absence.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar also slammed the Centre over the construction of the new Parliament and said that there is ‘no sense’ to attend the NITI Aayog meeting and the inauguration ceremony of the new building. Kejriwal has accused the Centre of turning the cooperative federalism into the joke. The Delhi CM and the Centre have been at the odds over ordinance related to administrative control of the national capital. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin could not attend the meeting as he is on an official visit to Japan.

As a preparatory prelude to the 8th Governing Council Meeting, the second Chief Secretaries Conference was held in January 2023, where these themes were extensively discussed. “Wide-ranging stakeholder consultations and brainstorming sessions with subject experts, academia and practitioners were held prior to the Conference in order to gain well-rounded grassroots-level perspectives,” it further said.

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