PM MOdi addressing the fifth governing council of Niti Ayog (source: twitter)

At the NITI Aayog’s Governing Council at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighted that the goal of making India a USD 5 trillion economy by 2024 is “challenging, but achievable”.

Mr Modi stressed that with the concerted efforts of states, the objective of making India a trillion dollar economy by 2024 was difficult but not impossible.

Speaking at the first meeting of the India’s planning body after winning the elections, he said that states should recognise their core competence, and work towards raising GDP targets beginning from the district level.

“Niti Aayog has a key role to play in the fulfilling mantra of ‘sabka saath, sabka vikas, sabka vishwas”, said Mr Modi, emphasizing that his MPs must work for all, not merely those who voted for the BJP.

In the meeting wherein all chief ministers were invited, was missed by Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, Telanagana CM K Chandrashekhar Rao (KCR) and Punjab CM Amirinder Singh.

Chief ministers of states attended the Niti Ayog meet (source: twitter)

While Banerjee is involved in a bitter tussle with the BJP in Bengal, KCR is reported to be busy due to inauguration of Kaleshwaram lift irrigation project. Capt. Amarinder Singh is reportedly unwell.

Meanwhile, ahead of the meeting of the Niti Aayog, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh met chief ministers of states ruled by the Congress and its allies at the Congress headquarters.

Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot, Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswamy and Puducherry CM V Narayansamy attended the meeting. Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel also joined later.

They discussed the proposed agenda of states ruled by the Congress and its allies to be taken up with PM Modi in the meeting of the Niti Aayog, sources said.

The prime minister, addressing the gathering, spoke of waging a collective fight against poverty, unemployment, drought, flood, pollution, corruption and violence etc.

He asserted that everyone at this platform has a common goal of achieving a New India by 2022. He described Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and PM AwaasYojana as illustrations of what the Centre and the States can accomplish together.

With several parts of the country reeling under a drought-like situation, the prime minister called for effective steps to tackle drought. He said that the spirit of per-drop, more-crop needs to be promoted.

Reiterating the Union Government’s commitment to double incomes of farmers by 2022, he said this requires focus on fisheries, animal husbandry, horticulture, fruits and vegetables.

On the health sector, the Prime Minister said that several targets have to be achieved by 2022. He also mentioned the target of eliminating tuberculosis by 2025.

Emphasizing the importance of the export sector in the progress of developing countries, he said both the Centre and the States should work towards growth in exports, in order to raise per capita incomes, adding that a push in exports at the state level will booth both income and employment.

The NITI Ayog was launched by PM Modi during his first tenure in 2014 as a replacement for the ageing Planning Commission formed during former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru’s tenure.

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