West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to inform him that she will not attend the meeting of the governing council of NITI Aayog on June 15, ANI reported. Banerjee said it was fruitless for her to attend the meeting since “the NITI Aayog has no financial powers and the power to support state plans”.
Banerjee has skipped NITI Aayog meetings in the past to express her displeasure over the dissolution of the Planning Commission.
“The experience of the last four and half years we had with the NITI Aayog, brings me back to my earlier suggestion to you that we focus on the Inter State Council constituted under Article 263 of the Constitution, with appropriate modifications, to enable the ISC to discharge its augmented range of functions as the nodal entity of the country,” Banerjee said in the letter, according to The Indian Express. “This will deepen cooperative federalism and strengthen federal polity.”
Modi is slated to chair the fifth meeting of Niti Aayog’s Governing Council on June 15. This will be the first meeting of the NITI Aayog’s Governing Council since the new Cabinet took oath on May 30. The council includes all chief ministers, lieutenant governors of Union territories, several Union ministers and senior government officials.