Vice Chairman, Punjab State Planning Board Prof. Rajender Bhandari meets Dr. S.K. Shad, Adviser, Planning, Government of Himachal Pradesh and discussed the planning procedures in both the States. Prof. Bhandari appreciated the process of the involvement of MLAs in the planning process in the State for determining the sectoral priorities in the State. Dr. S.K. Shad made a comprehensive presentation of the progress made in the different sectors by Himachal Pradesh.
Prof. Bhandari praised the State Government for launching the Deen Dayal Upadhaya Kisan Bagwan Samridhi Yojna and Mukhya Mantri Arogya Pashudhan Yojna in the State. The Vice Chairman also appreciated the implementation and monitoring mechanism of 20 Point Programme in the State due to which the State has been ranked No. 1 in the whole country.
The issues of mutual interest of both the States were also discussed where the role of planning organization in both the States can play a significant role in resolving such issues. The issue of channelization of Swan River in the Punjab territory in the down stream of Santokhgarh in Himachal Pradesh was also discussed. The Adviser (Planning) requested the Vice Chairman to avail the Government of India ‘National Flood Management Programme’ for the channelization of Swan River in Punjab area where 90% grant is available to the States.
Vice Chairman was also requested to resolve the issue of the payment of arrears of Rs. 62 crore for the Shah Nehar Project through appropriate provision in their plans.
Vice Chairman praised the State Government for mobilization of resources through the externally aided projects in the State. The total outlay under the externally aided projects is Rs. 671 crore in the total Annual Plan size of Rs. 3300 crore for 2011-12 which is 20% of the total plan. The State of Himachal Pradesh is the beneficiary under the externally aided projects being the Special Category State.
Prof. Bhandari appreciated the approach adopted in the decentralized planning process in the State. He praised the scheme of Vikas Mein Jan Sehyog being implemented in the State with the public participation. He also appreciated the concept of Backward Area Sub Plan being implemented by the Government to bring the backward pockets in the main development stream through additional investment of 15%. He also appreciated the introduction of Mukhya Mantri Gram Path Yojna Scheme to compensate the areas which are not covered under the population norms of Prime Minister Gram Sadak Yojna of the Government of India.