June 22, 2011
West Bengal Annual Plan 2011-12 finalized
The Annual Plan outlay for West Bengal for the year 2011-12 was approved today at a meeting between the Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Shri Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of West Bengal Ms Mamta Banerjee. The Annual Plan size was agreed at Rs. 22,214 crores.
In his opening remarks, Mr Ahluwalia said the State needs to accelerate growth and make it more inclusive. He said the focus of the development initiatives should be health, education and employment generation. New initiatives are needed to create investor friendly environment and improve both social and physical infrastructure. He said in the process of rebuilding the State emphasis should also be on improving revenue generation. Public private partnership in development roads and health sector needs to be encouraged.
Mr Ahluwalia said as part of exercise aimed at further involving States in evolving approach for the 12th plan, the Commission is holding consultations with the States and civil society and would welcome suggestions from the State Governments on improving efficiency of the flagship programmes. He said the Commission would be willing to help the State in working out a development plan which would make development more inclusive.
Appreciating the approach of the new Government in handling issues concerning the State, Commission said focus of tourism and cluster approach for industrial development are steps in the right direction. He said the Commission will also give priority to cluster approach in the 12th Plan and thus would welcome State initiatives in this direction.
In her response on the development strategy, Ms Banerjee said that focus would be on faster and more inclusive growth on sustainable basis. Better opportunities for employment and income generation would be created. Delivery of services would be improved and emphasis will be on development of Micro-small and medium enterprises.
The Chief Minister pointed out that a sustainable development strategy is being worked out to address the problems of the State which would be based on the full exploitation of the available areas of strength. Tourism, revival of close industrial units and land use policy along with creation of land bank will form basis of this approach.
She said a separate Department for the Development of North Bengal would be set up which will exclusively look after six north