National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog is a policy think tank of the Government of India that provides critical, directional and strategic input into the country’s developmental process.
It was established on 1 January 2015 to replace the Planning Commission, and it is an advisory body with no financial role whose recommendations are also not binding on the government.
Objectives of NITI Aayog
- Formulate plans at the village level and aggregate them at higher levels.
- To foster cooperative federalism, with the active involvement of States in policy making.
- Special attention to sections at risk of not benefitting adequately from economic progress.
- Incorporate national security interests also to economic policy.
- Partnerships with national and international think tanks.
- Act as a platform for the resolution of inter-sectoral and inter-departmental issues.
Functions of NITI Aayog
- Act as a think tank for the Government to provide strategic and technical advice across the spectrum of the key elements of policy.
- Develop mechanisms to formulate credible plans and policy frameworks at the village level and at higher levels of the Government.
- Develop itself as a state-of-the-art resources centre, with the necessary resources and skills that will enable it to provide strategic policy vision for the Government and deal with contingent issues.
- Monitor and evaluate the implementation of programmes.
- Focus on technology degradation and capacity building.
- Public various socio-economic indices.
Composition of NITI Aayog
NITI Aayog comprises of:
- The Prime Minister as Chairperson.
- Vice-Chairperson (nominated by the Prime Minister).
- One full-time Chief Executive Officer (CEO) — appointed by the PM for a fixed tenure in the rank of Secretary to the Government of India.
- Four full-time members — appointed by the Prime Minister.
- Maximum 2 part-time members on a rotational basis from relevant institutions.
- Maximum 4 members from among Union Council of Ministers (nominated by the PM) as ex-officio members.
- Special Invitees nominated by the PM (includes Experts, Specialists, and Practitioners with domain knowledge).
- Secretariat, as deemed necessary.
The Governing Council of NITI Aayog comprises the Chief Ministers of States and Lt. Governors of UTs as members and is headed by the Prime Minister. This Governing Council has replaced the erstwhile National Development Council (NDC).
There is also the provision for Regional Councils with specific tenure which is to be formed on a need basis in order to address specific issues. It comprises Chief Ministers of States and Lt. Governors of UTs of the concerned region.
NITI Aayog is divided into two hubs; the Knowledge and Innovation Hub, and Team India Hub.
- Knowledge and Innovation Hub has 12-14 verticals which deal with different sectors and build NITI’s think tank capabilities.
- Team India Hub works as an interface between the Central Government and the States.