National Development Council (NDC)
The National Development Council or the Rashtriya Vikas Parishad was set up on 6th August 1952 to strengthen and mobilise the effort and resources of the nation in support of the plan, to promote common economic policy in all vital spheres, and to ensure the balanced and rapid development of all parts of the country. The Council which was re-constituted on October 7, 1967 is the highest decision making authority in the country in the area of development matters. It is a constitutional body with representation from both the Centre and States. The Council is headed by the Prime Minister and all Union Cabinet Ministers, State Chief Ministers, representatives of Union Territories; Members of Planning Commission are its members. The Secretary/ Member-Secretary of Planning Commission functions as the Secretary of the Council and all administrative assistance is rendered by Planning Commission.
The functions of NDC are (i) to prescribe guidelines for formulation of the National Plan, including assessment of resources for the Plan (ii) to consider the National Plan as formulated by the Planning Commission (iii) to consider important questions of social and economic policy affecting national development and (iv) to review the working of the Plan from time to time and to recommend such measures as are necessary for achieving the aims and targets set out in the National Plan. The prime function of the Council is to act as a bridge between the Union government, Planning Commission and the State Governments. It is a forum not only for discussion of plans and programmes but also social and economic matters of national importance are discussed in this forum before policy formulation. It is a very democratic forum where the States openly express their views. No resolution is passed by the Council. The practice is to have a complete record of the discussion and gather out of its general trends pinpointing particular conclusions. Sub-Committees under the Chairmanship of Union Cabinet Minister/State Chief Minister are also formed under the NDC to deliberate on policy areas requiring wide-range of consultations.
The NDC ordinarily meets twice a year. So far 55 meetings of the NDC have been held. The last meeting of the NDC was held in July 2010 where the Mid-Term Appraisal Report of the XI Five Year Plan was discussed. In the next meeting of the NDC the Approach Paper to the XII Five Year Plan is to be discussed. On the occasion of the 50th meeting of the NDC Planning Commission released a voluminous resourceful publication on the Summary Record of the 50 meetings of NDC.