Bihar today became the first state to issue an "approach paper" on achieving its development objectives for the 11th five-year plan and fixed an ambitious 8.5 per cent growth rate target for 2007-12.
The paper focuses on the state's "factor advantages" of a young demography, rich gri-potential and ability to improve educational-health parameters as the key elements to achieve its targets.
"The paper visualises a growth rate of 8.5 per cent compared to an average of 5.6 per cent in the years 2001-02 to 2004-05 according to estimates of the Planning Commission. This involves agriculture growing at a minimum of 5 per cent (with effort, according to the Planning Commission, it can grow at 7 per cent), industry at 11 per cent and services at 10 per cent," said the synopsis of the paper released by chief minister Nitish Kumar.
The high growth target planned by the government, the paper claims,would eventually wipe out the unemployment backlog and also take care of the fresh accretion to the labour force.
The 124-page document enlists all core sectors that need to be focused on for achieving the targets and it lays special emphasis on agriculture, infrastructure and the social sector. "Education, which comes under the concurrent list, is an instrument to develop human resources. We have requested the Centre to bring it under the plan head instead of the revenue head so that more money can be spent on
education," the chief minister said.
Nitish asserted that the state had consciously fixed a higher growth rate than the one suggested by the National Development Council. "Even these targets can be revised upwards. We are certain of our performance because full budgeting exercise for the next fiscal will be completed by March and development work will start
from April. The work will be closely monitored," he added.
The paper states that the government is committed to catalysing private investment in the state and asserts that in the industry sector, sugar, tea processing and entertainment offer a "good promise".
"The State Investment Board has already approved 66 proposals with investment of over Rs 26,000 crore, including mega projects for production of ethanol from maize and sugarcane juice. It has also approved 19 new sugar mills. A transparent land policy is on the anvil.
"This, along with setting up of industrial parks, technical education, ITIs and the growth pole scheme and development of backward regions through cluster development programme, will give added thrust to secure larger private investment," states the paper.
Deputy chairperson of the state planning board N.K. Singh said the low growth rate of earlier years was due to poor infrastructure.
"Bihar has learnt from its past experience and will not allow the future to be a hostage of the past," he said.
http://www.telegrap hindia.com/ 1061226/asp/ jamshedpur/ story_7185239. as
[Hope and pray that the present govt start the real work now..it has
been doing lip service for too long time now...]