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’19 result wary Niti refuses to extend contract of staff

THE ASIAN AGE. | ANIMESH SINGH
Published : Nov 7, 2018, 1:33 am IST
Updated : Nov 7, 2018, 1:33 am IST

All these professionals were hired on contractual basis with their contract periods being upto three years.

The Niti Aayog, though, has been functioning mainly as an advisory body to the Centre as all the major decision making is being done at the PMO level.
 The Niti Aayog, though, has been functioning mainly as an advisory body to the Centre as all the major decision making is being done at the PMO level.

New Delhi: Acutely aware of the fact as to what could be Niti Aayog’s role after 2019 Lok Sabha polls, in the eventuality of a change in regime at the Centre, there is tremendous churning within the 100-odd contractual work force which does the bulk of the think tank’s policy related work.

According to sources privy to developments, the contracts of all such professionals who were hired in 2015 (when the erstwhile Planning Commission was reinvented as Niti Aayog) are coming to an end as they were of three years’ duration. However, the top management is not keen in renewing them.

While a few of these professionals have already left Niti Aayog, sources said that some more may leave soon after being indicated that their engagements may no more be required.

The main reason behind the government think tank’s top management’s reluctance in renewing the contracts is that in case of a change in governance at the Centre after the general elections, Niti Aayog’s profile could undergo changes. In that eventuality, it is being thought that such a large contractual workforce could not be of much use, sources informed.

As of now there are seven OSDs (officers on special duty), 28 consultants, and 73 YPs (young professionals) who are engaged by the Niti Aayog.

While highly qualified professionals from fields as diverse as business ma-nagement, sciences, statistics, and data analytics among others were hired as OSDs and consultants after the erstwhile Planning Commission reappeared as Niti Aayog in January 2015, a host of young pass-outs from prestigious institutions were taken as YPs, who mainly help out senior bureaucrats (working as advisors in Niti Aayog) in their day-to-day work.

All these professionals were hired on contractual basis with their contract periods being upto three years.

While the Planning Commission remained a major bulwark of the nation’s governance structure since the 1950s, functioning as a fund provider to states and enabling them to manage their annual expenses, it also monitored the Centre’s five-year plan periods and the targets achieved under them.

The Niti Aayog, though, has been functioning mainly as an advisory body to the Centre as all the major decision making is being done at the PMO level.

Tags: niti aayog, lok sabha polls