Gujarat gets Rs.59,000 crore Plan approval

New Delhi, June 18 (IANS) The Planning Commission Tuesday approved a Rs.59,000-crore Annual Plan for Gujarat.

This includes central assistance to the State Plan of about Rs.3,979 crore. In addition, an amount of about Rs.6,000 crore is likely to flow from the Centre to Gujarat through various centrally-sponsored schemes. Thus, Plan funding from the central government to the state from all sources is expected to be about Rs.10,000 crore during 2013-14, said an official release.

The plan was finalised during a meeting between Commision Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

"Gujarat had asked the Planning Commission for Rs.58,500 crore, but the Commission is of the opinion that Gujarat is capable of adding to the growth of the country and hence granted Rs.59,000 crore," Modi told mediapersons.

Ahluwalia said the performance of the state had been "good" but "it needs to pay special attention on social sector".

Modi responded saying the state had earmarked 42 percent of its allotment to the social sector.

The deputy chairman said that in view of the Gujarat chief minister's request for greater flexibility in implementing centrally sponsored schemes, the planning Commission "will ask the cabinet for greater flexibility in centre sponsored schemes, which I hope they will consider".

He informed mediapersons that such a note advocating greater flexibility, which will benefit all states, will be placed Wednesday before the union cabinet.

Earlier, Ahluwalia lauded Gujarat's contribution to the economy, saying the state is one of the biggest contributors to the country's GDP growth.

The meeting took place at the Planning Commission headquarters amidst tight security, with a large police contingent deployed in and around the premises.