ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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EEC-No Power, No Glory

distribution or incomes within the agricultural sector. The task goes abegging, however. The Approach document had made much of the so-called National Minimum Needs Programme, comprising items like elementary education, rural health, nutrition, water supply, etc, for which an outlay of Rs 2,804 crores had been earmarked. In the Draft Plan the outlay has been slashed by Rs 500 crores or about 18 per cent. The cut in real terms, after allowing for the rise in prices and costs, is likely to be nearer 25-30 per cent. Yet nowhere in the Draft Plan is it oven mentioned what a cut of this order means for the Programme as originally envisaged or for the objective of reducing inequality and removing poverty. As in every Plan, the social services, of which the Minimum Needs Programme forms a part, is treated as an appendage, the outlay on which can apparently be chopped and changed without doing any damage at all to any of the objectives of the Plan.

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