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PLANNING in India derives its objectives and social premises from the Directive Principles of State Policy enshrined in the Constitution. Public and private sectors are viewed as complementary. The private sector covers, besides organized industry, small-scale industries, agriculture, trade and housing, construction, and related areas. Individual efforts and private initiatives are considered necessary and desirable in the national endeavour for development with optimum voluntary cooperation.

NITI Aayog

  • The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) came into existence in 2015.
  • The NITI Aayog is the successor to the Planning Commission (1950).
  • This is to be built on the foundation of an empowered role of states as equal partners in national development underlying the principle of cooperative federalism.





The Governing Council

  • The Chief Ministers of all the states, Chief Ministers of union territories with legislatures, viz., Delhi and Puducherry and Lt. Governors of other union territories.


Special invitees

  • Experts, specialists and practitioners with relevant domain knowledge as special invitees nominated by the Prime Minister.

Erstwhile Planning Commission

  • The Planning Commission was set up in March, 1950.
  • Objectives:
    • To promote a rapid rise in the standard of living of the people by efficient exploitation of the resources of the country
    • Increasing production and offering opportunities to all for employment in the service of the community
    • Formulating plan for the most effective and balanced utilization of resources and determining priorities

First Plan (1951-56)

  • Keeping in view the large-scale import of food grains in 1951, the First Plan accorded the highest priority to agriculture including irrigation and power projects.
  • About 44.6 percent of the total outlay of ? 2,069 crores in the public sector (later raised to ? 2,378 crores) was allocated for this purpose.
  • The Plan aimed at increasing the rate of investment from five to about seven percent of the national income.

Second Plan (1956-57 to 1960-61)

  • It sought to promote a pattern of development, which would ultimately lead to the establishment of a socialistic pattern of society in India.
  • Its main aims were:
    • Increasing the rate of investment from about 7 percent of the national income to 11 per cent by 1960-61
    • Rapid industrialization with particular emphasis on the development of basic and heavy industries
    • Large expansion of employment opportunities

Third Plan (1961-62 to 1965-66)

  • Its immediate objectives were:
    • Increasing the national income by about 30 percent from ? 14,500 crores in 1960-61 to about ? 19,000 crores by 1965-66 (at 1960-61 prices)
    • Increasing per capita income by about 17 percent from 330 to 386 over the same period
    • Achieve self-sufficiency in food grains and increase agricultural production
    • Expand basic industries like steel, chemicals, fuel, and power and establish machine-building capacity

Annual Plans

  • The situation created by the Indo-Pakistan conflict in 1965, two successive years of severe drought, devaluation of the currency, a general rise in prices, and erosion of resources available for Plan purposes delayed the finalization of the Fourth Five Year Plan.
  • Instead, between 1966 and 1969, three Annual Plans were formulated within the framework of the draft outline of the Fourth Plan.

Fourth Plan (1969-74)


  • Increasing the net domestic product (at 1968-69 factor cost) from ? 29,071 crore in 1969-70 to ? 38,306 crores in 1973-74.
  • The average annual compound rate of growth envisaged was 5.7 percent.
  • Reducing fluctuations in agricultural production as well as the impact of uncertainties of foreign aid.
  • Reduction of concentration of wealth, income and economic power to promote equity.

Fifth Plan (1974-79)

  • It was formulated against the backdrop of severe inflationary pressures.
  • Objectives:
    • An annual growth rate of 5.5 percent in the national income.
    • To achieve self-reliance and adopt measures for raising the consumption standard of people living below the poverty line.
  • It was subsequently decided to end the Fifth Plan period with the close of the Annual Plan 1978-79.

Sixth Plan (1980-85)

  • The actual expenditure in the Sixth Plan stood at ?1,09,291.7 crore (current price) as against the envisaged total public sector outlay of ?97,500 crores (1979-80 prices) accounting for a 12 percent increase in nominal terms.
  • Objectives:
    • The average annual growth rate of 5.2 percent
    • Removal of poverty
    • Strengthening the infrastructure for both agriculture and industry.

Seventh Plan


  • The total expenditure stood at ?2,18,729.62 crore (current prices) as against the envisaged total public sector outlay of ?1,80,000 crore, resulting in a 21.52 percent increase in nominal terms.
  • To reduce unemployment and poverty, Jawahar Rozgar Yojana were launched.
  • Food grains production grew by 3.23 percent as compared to a long-term growth rate of 2.68 percent between 1967-68 and 1988-89.
  • The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew at an average rate of 5.8 percent exceeding the targeted growth rate by 0.8 percent.

Eighth Annual Plans (1990-95)

  • It could not take off due to the fast-changing political situation at the Centre.
  • The Eighth Five-Year Plan commenced in 1992 and that 1990-91 and 1991-92 were treated as separate Annual Plans.

Eighth Plan (1992-97)

  • These growth targets were planned to be achieved with relative price stability and substantial improvement in the country’s Balance of Payments.
  • The Plan aimed at an average annual growth rate of 5.6 percent and an average industrial growth rate of about 7.5 percent.
  • Against this, an average annual growth rate of 6.8 percent was achieved during this plan period.
  • Some of the salient features of economic performance during the Eighth Five-Year Plan:
    • A faster economic growth,
    • A faster growth of the manufacturing sector and agriculture and allied sectors,
    • Significant growth rates in exports and imports
    • Improvement in trade and current account deficit
    • A significant reduction in the Central Governments fiscal deficit
  • The total expenditure stood at ?4,95,669 crore by taking 1996-97 (RE) as actual] at current prices as against envisaged total public sector outlay of ?4,34,100 crore (1991-92 prices) resulting in a 14.2 percent increase in nominal terms.

Ninth Plan (1997-2002)

  • The Ninth Plan (1997-2002) was launched in the fiftieth year of India’s Independence.
  • The Plan aimed at achieving a targeted GDP growth rate of 7 percent per annum and there was an emphasis on the seven identified Basic Minimum Services (BMS) with additional Central Assistance.
  • These included the provision of safe drinking water, availability of primary health service facilities, universalization of primary education, public housing assistance to shelterless poor families, nutritional support to children, connectivity of all villages and habitations, and streamlining of the public distribution system with a focus on the poor.
  • The Plan also aimed at pursuing a policy of fiscal consolidation, whereby the focus was on sharp reduction in the revenue deficit of the Government.
  • The Ninth Plan envisaged an average target growth rate of 6.5 percent per annum in GDP as against the growth rate of 7 percent approved earlier in the Approach Paper.
  • Against this, the achievement in the growth-rate on an average was to be 5.5 percent per annum.

Tenth Plan (2002-07)


  • Doubling the per capita income in ten years and achieving a growth rate of 8 percent of GDP per annum.
  • Reduction in the poverty ratio from 26 percent to 21 percent, by 2007
  • Decadal population growth to reduce from 21.3 percent in 1991-2001 to 16.2 percent in 2001-11
  • All children to be in school by 2003 and all children to complete five years of schooling by 2007
  • Reducing gender gaps in literacy and wage rates by 50 percent
  • Literacy rate to increase from 65 percent in 1999-2000, to 75 percent in 2007
  • Increase in forest/tree cover from 19 percent in 1999-2000, to 25 percent in 2007
  • The Tenth Plan had a number of new features that include:
  • Aims at creating 50 million job opportunities during the period, by placing special emphasis on employment-intensive sectors of agriculture, irrigation, agro-forestry, small and medium enterprises, information and communication technology, and other services.

Eleventh Plan (2007-12)

  • It set a target for 9 percent growth in the five year period with acceleration during the period to reach 10 percent by the end of the Plan.

Twelfth Plan (2012-17)

  • The Approach Paper to the Twelfth Plan, had set a target of 9 percent average growth of GDP.
  • It envisaged that the current slowdown in GDP growth can be reversed through strong corrective action, including especially an expansion in investment with a corresponding increase in savings to keep inflationary pressures under control.

Atal Innovation Mission

  • The Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) is a flagship initiative of the Central Government, set up by NITI Aayog.
  • AIM would play an instrumental role in alignment of innovation policies between central, state, and sectoral innovation schemes incentivizing establishment of an ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship at various levels higher secondary schools, science, engineering and higher academic institutions, and SME industry / corporate levels.
  • AIM is setting up Atal Tinkering Labs (ATL) in schools across all 700+ districts across the country.
  • At the university, NGO, SME, and Corporate industry levels, AIM is setting up world-class Atal Incubators (AICs) that would trigger and enable successful growth of sustainable startups in every sector /state of the country.

Mentor India:

  • The Mentor India program launched by AIM is a path-breaking initiative to catalyse the academia-industry partnerships.
  • Under it, more than 3,200 mentors from all over the country belonging to various industry sectors have been assigned to work with 1800+ ATLs on a continuous basis.
  • These mentors volunteer their time to engage with ATL students, sharing technical and professional insights.

Atal Incubation Centres

  • Atal Incubation Centres (AICs) and Established Incubation Centres are incubation spaces intended to provide incubation facilities to innovative startups like capital equipment and operating facilities along with sectoral experts for mentoring, business planning support, access to seed capital, industry partnerships, training and other critical components.
  • Across the country, 19 AICs are already operational, incubating startups across different -elds and working on new-age technology.

Atal New India Challenge:

  • Atal New India Challenge (ANIC), which is an initiative by Atal Innovation Mission aimed at supporting innovators to create products/ solutions based on advanced technologies in areas of national importance and social relevance through a grant-based mechanism.

Initiatives and Reforms

Agriculture Reforms

Implementation of MSP for notified crops:

  • NITI Aayog in consultation with central ministries and states developed a mechanism for implementation of Minimum Support Price (MSP) for different agricultural crops.
  • Three concepts were discussed:
    • Market Assurance Scheme (MAS)
    • Price Deficiency Procurement Scheme (PDPS)
    • Private Procurement and Stockists Scheme (PPSS).
  • Accordingly, the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare launched Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay Sanrakshan Abhiyan (PM-AASHA) in 2018.

Contract Farming

  • The Union Government provided, for the first time, an opportunity to the farmers to decide the price of their products and negotiate with buyers through the Model Act on Contract Farming.
  • The Model Act called the State/UT Agricultural Produce and Livestock Contract Farming and Services (Promotion & Facilitation) Act, 2018 was formulated in consultation with NITI Aayog and launched in 2018 for its adoption by the states/union territories.
  • The Model Act covers the entire value and supply chain from pre-production to post-harvest marketing including services contract for the agricultural produce and livestock.

Reforms in Nutrition

POSHAN Abhiyaan(2018):

  • A Scheme for holistic nutrition or POSHAN Abhiyaan or National Nutrition Mission is the Government of India’s flagship program to improve nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women, and lactating mothers.
  • POSHAN Abhiyaan intends to significantly reduce malnutrition in the next three years.


  • September was celebrated as Rashtriya POSHAN Maah in 2018.
  • The activities in POSHAN Ma0ah focussed on Social Behavioural Change and Communication (SBCC).
  • The broad themes were: antenatal care, optimal breastfeeding (early and exclusive), complementary feeding, anemia, growth monitoring, girls’-education, diet, right age of marriage, hygiene and sanitation, and eating healthy-food fortification.

Health Sector Reforms

Ayushman Bharat: Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana

  • The National Health Policy 2017 envisages the creation of a digital health technology eco-system aiming at developing an integrated health information system.
  • Ayushman Bharat comprising twin missions is set to transform the nation’s health system by:
    • Operationalizing 1.5 lakh health and wellness centers offering preventive and primary care, on the supply side
    • Offering financial protection of up to ? 5 lakhs per year per family for the deprived 10 crores plus households towards secondary and tertiary care, on the demand side.


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