New Delhi, February 20: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Punjab counterpart Captain Amarinder Singh are unlikely to attend Niti Aayog's governing council meeting to be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today. The governing council is the top body of Niti Aayog and has all Chief Ministers, Lieutenant Governors of Union Territories , several Union Ministers and senior government officials as members.
"Mamata Banerjee may not attend the Niti Aayog's February 20 meeting," a senior Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader was quoted by news agency Press Trust of India as saying. The TMC leader did not reveal the reason. Banerjee had in past skipped Niti Aayog's meetings. She had said that the government's think tank has "no financial power" and cannot support the state plans. Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant Says 'Tough Reforms Difficult in India, We Have Too Much of Democracy'.
Sources also told news agency ANI that Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh will also give it a miss because he is "indisposed". "Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh will not attend the Niti Aayog meeting today. He is indisposed, Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal will attend the meeting instead," sources were quoted as saying.
The agenda of the today's meeting includes deliberations on agriculture, infrastructure, manufacturing, human resource development, service delivery at grassroots level, and health and nutrition. "The sixth meeting will witness the entry of Ladakh for the first time, in addition to the participation of Jammu and Kashmir as a UT," said a statement from the Prime Minister's Office.