The Fifteenth Finance Commission met Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and senior officials of Ministry of Defence to explore alternate mechanism of ‘funding of defence and internal security’. This meeting was important as it took place under a changed ‘Term of Reference’ (ToR) issued by Ministry of Finance in July as per the orders of the President of India.
“MoD officials apprised the Commission that it was exploring a number of alternative sources of funding.” communicated the MoD through its official release.
As per order of the President of India, the Terms of Reference (ToR) of the 15th Finance Commission was amended and Paragraph 9A was inserted in the ToR namely: “The Commission shall also examine whether a separate mechanism for funding of defence and internal security ought to be set up, and if so, how such a mechanism could be operationalised.”
The Commission headed by N.K. Singh was made aware of the MoD’s Fund Projections for the period 2020-2025 which is also the award period of the 15th Finance Commission. The Ministry informed the Commission about the allocated budget for MoD in comparison to the projections made. The Commission has assured of all help.
“The Finance Commission assured MoD that it would take into consideration all the suggestions made that would help to increase the overall capital space of the Ministry, bring about predictability and help the Ministry in its defence preparedness.” said the MoD in its release.
The meeting was attended by Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Karambir Singh, Defence Secretary Dr Ajay Kumar, Secretary (Defence Production) Shri Subhash Chandra along with the other senior officials of the Services and Ministry.