HYDERABAD: Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s decision not to implement Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSSs) which are not of any use to the people of Telangana finds a distant echo in the thinking of the Fifteenth Finance Commission (FFC), which has been constituted to make recommendations on Central devolutions to the States for five years from April 1, 2020.
According to reports, the FFC is likely to recommend that the Central government either prune or eliminate some CCSs. This apart, several chief ministers at the fifth Governing Council of Niti Aayog meeting in June this year rued that CSSs were bleeding the states. When the Niti Aayog rationalised 66 CCSs into 28, the state’s share went up from 20 per cent to 40 per cent in core sector schemes. This adversely impacted the revenues of several states.
In the Niti Aayog’s meeting in June, Bihar CM Nitish Kumar argued that CCSs should be discontinued due to financial woes of states. Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan, while mentioning that states are bearing 40 per cent of the cost of schemes, instead of 20 per cent earlier, remarked that the Niti Aayog failed to become a better substitute of the Planning Commission.
CM K Chandrasekhar Rao was a member of the Niti Aayog’s sub-group of chief ministers on rationalisation of CSSs. As a member of the sub-group, he said: “Core CSSs may include sectors covered by core national development agenda including legislation-backed schemes.
Sectors proposed to be covered by CSSs:
Poverty elimination, drinking water and Swachh Bharat, education, health, and nutrition, women & child development, and rural and urban housing. These sectors should have first charge on the CSS funds and at least 80% of the total allocation