New Delhi, February 8: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Sunday advocated the need for setting up a permanent regiol council for the hill states and creation of a separate hill division. Speaking at the tiol Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog meeting here, he also suggested that the proposed hill division in the NITI Aayog could act as a permanent secretariat for this regiol council. Prime Minister rendra Modi chaired the meeting.
The chief minister suggested that there should be a representation from the states by rotation in the executive body of the NITI Aayog, irrespective of political party in power in the states. He stressed that the resource allocation for fincing the annual plans in the shape of special central assistance and special plan assistance should continue for the hill states, keeping in view the peculiar challenges prevailing in these states. He suggested that the process of consultation between the NITI Aayog vice chairman and the chief ministers as well as between the chief executive officer of NITI Aayog and the chief secretaries should continue for filization of annual plans.
Virbhadra Singh favoured that skill upgradation of youth should be given top priority in order to increase the employability and also to fulfill the needs of skilled manpower in the industrial sector. Stressing the need for creating environment for industries, he said a definite mechanism should be evolved to clear projects in a time–bound manner and apprised that Himachal Pradesh has already started clearance to projects through a single–window system. (IANS)