Infrastructure

Centre, states discuss bringing drop outs back to school, TB free India by 2025

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday discussed with leaders of states and union territories ways of bringing school dropouts back to the education system, substituting more imported products with locally made ones, improving Goods and Services Tax (GST) receipts and making India TB-free by 2025.

NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar said at a news briefing after the sixth meeting of the federal policy-making body’s governing council led by the Prime Minister that the central and state leadership discussed a synchornised national agenda for development.

Making India a manufacturing powerhouse, re-imagining the farm sector, improving physical infrastructure, quickening human resource development, improving service delivery at the lowest level and health and nutrition were discussed, Kumar said.

The meeting discussed ways of bringing back to the education system about three crore children who are out of schools, Kumar said. Kumar also said the meeting discussed ways of stepping up GST revenue collections. “If states make special efforts, then GST collection can further improve and help in revenue collection of the Centre and the states,” said Kumar.

He explained that the national growth was dependent on states and the UTs and hence a coherent approach and a consensus based agenda was needed on the basis of cooperative federalism. Utilising the energy at the district level to push the national development goals was also discussed. NITI Aayog chief executive officer Amitabh Kant, who was also present at the briefing said that the broad-based agenda for the meeting was discussed earlier with state officials and all states were fully aligned with the national development goals.

Prime Minister Modi had in his opening remarks urged states to sync their budget priorities with the Centre’s for faster development. He also urged states to reduce the burden of compliance on the common man.

“There are thousands of compliance requirements that now apply to common people, which can be eliminated. We have eliminated 1,500 laws. I wish states would make a team and identify those that can be weeded out. Now that we have the technology, there is no need for asking people to furnish the same things time and again…Let us remove this compliance burden from the people. This is also important for ease of living,” Modi said in his speech delivered in Hindi.

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