PM stresses on reducing inequity and inequality

January 16th, 2009 - 3:37 pm ICT by ANI  

Manmohan Singh

New Delhi, Jan 16 (ANI): Terming the local governments as unsung heroes of the nations march towards development and prosperity, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh stressed supremely on reducing inequity and inequality and meeting core development needs.

Addressing a conference of Chairpersons of District Planning Committees here. Dr. Singh confessed that the progress on genuine empowerment has been uneven.

He, however, did not fail to mention the successful holding of regular elections to local governments and the undisputable reservations provided for women, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

The Prime Minister also mentioned UPAs achievements in bringing social empowerment with political empowerment by this ongoing grass root democratic practice.

22 States and Union Territories have individually agreed with the Ministry of Panchayati Raj on State and UT specific road maps and at the Central level, several important Centrally Sponsored Schemes, other programmes and National policies have been modified to make planning and implementation at the three levels of Panchayat clearer, he added.

In order to strengthen the decentralized management through local institutions, in several flagship programmes like the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and National Rural Health Mission, District level plans are being prepared and funded.

Likewise, there are plans for the village level and 63 cities have evoked Medium term Development Plans under JNNRUM, said the Prime Minister.

Till now, 19 states have constituted DPCs. Singh appealed to the remaining states to adhere to these mandatory provisions of the constitution before further loss of time.

Singh further welcomed the idea of future interaction of the same nature between the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Planning Commission and the Ministry of Urban Development.

The Prime Minister said areas that need attention include combating of disease, eliminating malnutrition, providing safe drinking water, good quality universal education, providing people with skills and job opportunities and preserving environment.

Programmes like rural water supply should be planned and implemented at the district level and medium term development plans in urban areas should be continued, he added.

Minister of Panchayati Raj Mani Shankar Aiyar, who was also present on the occasion, laid emphasis on the fact that the District Planning Committees should take into account the plans and aspirations of people at the grassroots.

The Ministry of Panchayati Raj along with the Planning Commission and the Ministry of Urban Development has organised the conference.

The Chairpersons of the Zilla Parishads, Chief Executive Officers of the Zilla Parishads, representatives of the national Institutions involved in supporting the process of district planning and State Institutes of Rural Development are participating in the conference.

The conference is also being attended by the State Secretaries in the Departments of Rural Development, Panchayati Raj, Planning and Urban Development.

Representatives of concerned Central Ministries are also present. Overall, around 1000 persons are attending the conference. (ANI)

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