Maharashtra-Haryana Assembly Elections

Gujarat needs to do more on social sector, says Montek; Modi retorts

Ahmedabad, PTI | Updated : 18 June 2013, 08:09 PM

After securing an approval for a plan size of Rs 59,000 crore for this fiscal, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday sparred with the Centre over social sector development in the state as he countered Planning Commission's assessment that lot more needs to be done.     

On his first trip to the national capital after being made BJP's election campaign head, Modi got the nod for Rs 59,000 crore Plan expenditure, 15.7 per cent more than the outlay for 2012-13.

The state was keen on a plan size of Rs 61,000 crore for 2013-14. Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia told reporters in presence of Modi that Gujarat needs to do more in social sectors.

"(There was)..a lot of discussion on the social sector. I think generally it has been our view that Gujarat needs, in order to bring its social sector performance upto the economic size, to have some special attention to this area," he remarked after the plan meeting with Modi.     

When his turn came, the Gujarat Chief Minister retorted back saying the state spends 42 per cent of its budget on social sector with a moto of "Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas."     

"The funds would help upliftment of all sections of the society including scheduled caste, down trodden, exploited and tribal. We want to have all the sections of the society to get the benefits of growth," he said.     

The Chief Minister cited Gujarat's growth story to counter Ahluwalia. "Gujarat has played a crucial and big role in development of India. In terms of contribution and in terms of GDP, we are among the highest contributers," he added.     

Ahluwalia stated that Gujarat needs special attention towards its social sector performance so that it can commensurate with state's size of economy.     

"Gujarat is one of our better performing states. In termsof economic growth we have noted that the performance has beengood in Gujarat," he added. 

First Published: Tuesday, June 18, 2013 08:06 PM
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