LUCKNOW: Prime Minister Narendra Modi 's dream of turning India into a $ 5 trillion economy will not come true until Uttar Pradesh pushes its economy to $ 1 trillion, said finance commission chairman N K Singh here on Tuesday.
Singh was addressing the media after wrapping up his four-day visit to the state and his interaction with chief minister Yogi Adityanath and his cabinet colleagues and bureaucrats.
The finance commission submits its report every fifth year, making recommendations to the Centre on devolution of funds between Centre and the states.
The 15th finance commission is likely to submit its report by next year.
If the commission was impressed by the efforts of the Yogi government in maintaining fiscal discipline and good governance, it expressed its concern over poor performance of the state in key social development indicators including health, education, poverty eradication and energy.
The commission camped for two days in Lucknow after visiting PM's constituency Varanasi.
‘UP NEEDS A ROADMAP’
Panel chairperson pats UP government for fiscal discipline
During its stay in Lucknow, the commission interacted with and sought feedback from the industry, bankers and political parties and then held a session with the state government.
Singh said the commission was appreciative of the fact that in the last two-and-a half years of the BJP government, UP has made rapid strides in development of the state by sticking to strict fiscal discipline and showing its intent to work towards sustainable development goals.
“But at the same time, there are certain areas of concern where the state was lagging behind other states and the national average,” said Singh.
The per capita income of Rs 55,456 in 2017-18 of the state in 2017-18 is far below the national Rs 1,14,958 while the total population below poverty line (BPL) in the state was 29.43 per cent against nation’s 21.92 per cent .The state’s performance in key social indicators is adverse as compared to the national average, said Singh.
While highlighting the 5th annual employment-unemployment survey of 2015-16, Singh said Uttar Pradesh has one of the highest unemployment rates, almost at the bottom of the index at 29th position.
The chairman also pointed out how the UDAY scheme has not delivered the desired results in the state as discom companies’ losses had escalated to over Rs 17,000 crore from Rs 10,000 crore and the energy department has failed to check the growing transmission and distribution losses.
It was in this background, Singh said that achieving the prime minister’s dream of propelling India into an economic superpower, was not possible until Uttar Pradesh achieved the target of $ 1 one trillion dollar economy.
“Given the challenges, it has to turn its challenges into opportunities and draw a roadmap,’ he added.
The commission also underlined the fact that in FY 2017-18, there had been a substantial decrease in capital expenditure of Rs 30,701 crore (44 per cent) over the previous year due to reduction in expenditure under road and bridges, power sector, food storages and warehousing and major irrigation.
The commission praised the state government for substantial progress in development of integrated technical management system and the state showing 1.51 per cent forest cover increase in 2017 from 2015.