Annual Plan for Puducherry fixed at Rs 1750 crores

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New Delhi, Feb 18 (UNI) The Annual Plan 2008-09 for Puducherry was today finalised at Rs 1750 crores with Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia complimenting the State for its all round development efforts.

The Plan outlay was fixed at a meeting in Yojna Bhavan between Dr Ahluwaia and the State Chief Minister N Rangaswamy.

Dr Ahluwalia complimented the Union Territory for growth in the manufacturing and service sectors. He however said the Gross State Domestic Product(GSDP) growth rate is less than the national average and focus should be on improving utilisation of resources.

The State was complimented for efforts aimed at promoting tourism and involving private sector. Human development indices are better than the national average. Performance in health and education sector is satisfactory.

The Commission offered non-lending technical assistance for procuring Master Plan on tourism development. The State was advised to rationalize subsidy and encourage rainwater harvesting. Attention was also drawn to coastal erosion.

Mr Rangaswamy said the Eleventh Plan will focus on social sector development with allocations stepped up for up-gradation of rural roads, better drinking water supply, slum up-gradation, primary&secondary education, primary health care services and public distribution system.

He said efforts were in full swing to improve infrastructure facilities to attract investments for industrial development, tourism and IT related industries. Natural resource based integrated farming system model with crop diversification and livestock integration would be promoted.

UNI GS AKJ KN1949

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