12th Plan approval to be delayed by a month

New Delhi: Approval of the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-17), which seeks to peg the economic growth rate at 8-8.5 per cent, by the National Development Council (NDC) is likely to be delayed by a month to October.

Earlier, the country`s apex policy making body NDC was scheduled to approve the 12th Plan document in September.

"Since the full Planning Commission meeting, presided over by the Prime Minister, is scheduled on September 15 to vet the 12th Plan, the final approval of the document by NDC would be possible only in October," a source privy to the development said.

The NDC, which is headed by the Prime Minister and comprises Cabinet Ministers and all Chief Ministers, gives the final nod to the five year Plan.

As per the current practice, the document is first approved by the full Planning Commission. Thereafter it is placed before the Union Cabinet and NDC for final nod. The process takes about six weeks following the finalisation of the document by the Commission.

The Commission`s Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia has said that the Plan document would be finalised by the end of this month.

Last year in October, the NDC had approved the Approach to the 12th Plan which had pegged the annual average economic growth rate at 9 per cent.

However, in view of the ongoing global and domestic problems, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had said, "it is relevant to ask whether this (9 per cent growth) is feasible since the economy is currently slowing down".