Gujarat's XIth Plan finalised at Rs 21,000 crore

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New Delhi, Apr 1 (UNI) The Planning Commission today finalised Gujarat's Annual Plan (2008-09) at Rs 21,000 crore, up 31 per cent from last year, and the Eleventh Plan size at Rs 1,11,111 crore.

The Annual Plan and the Eleventh Five-Year Plan size were finalised after more than a two-hour meeting between Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and other officials of the Commission at Yojana Bhavan here.

A beaming Mr Modi later told mediapersons that he was fully satisfied with the size of both the Annual Plan and the Five-Year Plan.

''Initially, we had envisaged Gujarat's Eleventh Five-Year at a size of Rs 100,000 crore, but in view of the direction and momentum of the developmental impulses, it was hiked to Rs 1,11,111 crore,'' he said.

Similarly, the Annual Plan (2008-09), initially, was to be pegged at Rs 19,000 crore, but it was subsequently increased by another Rs 2,000 crore.

''The outlays for the Annual Plan and the Five-Year Plan augur well for the state and will surely give an impetus to its developmental pursuits,'' Mr Modi said.

Mr Modi, who was accompanied by a high-level team of ministers and senior officials, also announced that Gujarat would observe the current year as the ''Healthy Child Year'' while the priorities of the government would focus on Human Development Index (HDI), health, education and welfare measures for tribals and fishermen.

''A staggering 43 per cent of the budget has been earmarked for the uplift of the poorest of the poor -- those who are languishing at the lowest rung of the soiciety -- and for an upward swing in HDI,'' he said, hoping that the Eleventh Plan would impart a new momentum to the state's ghrowth trajectory.

Dr Ahluwalia said Gujarat had been performing ''very well'' and this fact was appreciated by all the members of the Planning Commission.

''More importantly, Gujarat's growth is firmly aligned with National Growth and Inclusive Growth, which has been made possible because of the state government putting stress on health and education,'' he added.

UNI/SKS RR HT1900

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