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NITI Aayog


On January 1, 2015 PM Modi-led GoI decided to replace the 65-year-old Planning Commission with a body called NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India) which will serve as a think tank of the government.
The move comes nearly four months after PM Modi’s Independence Day speech, where he had announced the plan panel would give way to a new body in sync with contemporary challenges, shunning the “one size fits all” approach.

 “Through the Niti Aayog we wish to ensure that every individual can enjoy the fruits of development & aspire to lead a better life (inclusive growth),” the PM wrote on the microblogging site.

The primary job of the new body -- described as a think-tank -- will be to advise the government on social and economic issues. Unlike the Nehruvian plan panel, the new body will not have the power to disburse funds to central ministries and state governments.

The Prime Minister will be the chairman of the new body and it will have a governing council comprising all Chief Ministers and Lt Governors.

One of the objectives of the new body will be to ensure that the interests of national security are incorporated in economic strategy and policy.
The body will provide the government relevant strategic and technical advice on key policy matters.  It includes matters of national and international importance on the economic front, dissemination of best practices from within the country as well as from other nations, the infusion of new policy ideas and specific issue-based support.

GoI had announced formation of NITI Aayog on 1 January 2015.


The various members of NITI Aayog are:

  • Chairman: Prime Minister Narendra Modi

  • Vice Chairman: Arvind Panagariya

  • Ex-Officio Members: Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley, Suresh Prabhu and Radha Mohan Singh

  • Special Invitees: Nitin Gadkari, Smriti Zubin Irani and Thawar Chand Gehlot

  • Full-time Members: Bibek Debroy & V. K. Saraswat

  • Governing Council: All state Chief Ministers and Lt Governors

  • CEO: Sindhushree Khullar



NITI Aayog vs Planning Commission

Business Standard has taken a look at five key counts on which the new body differs from the decades-old Planning Commission


NITI Aayog

Planning Commission

Financial clout

To be an advisory body, or a think-tank. The powers to allocate funds might be vested in the finance ministry

Enjoyed the powers to allocate funds to ministries and state governments

Full-time members

The number of full-time members could be fewer than Planning Commission

The last Commission had eight full-time members

States' role

State governments are expected to play a more significant role than they did in the Planning Commission

States' role was limited to the National Development Council and annual interaction during Plan meetings

Member secretary

To be known at the CEO and to be appointed by the prime minister

Secretaries or member secretaries were appointment through the usual process

Part-time members

To have a number of part-time members, depending on the need from time to time

Full Planning Commission had no provision for part-time members




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