Planning and Sustainable Development in Indian Context

Planning is the process of evolving a sequence of actions that are designed to solve problems in the future. In India, planning is primarily the responsibility of the central government. Planning is an important aspect of any economy, and it is also essential for economic development.

There are basically two approaches to planning. The first is the regional approach, which has a spatial perspective and draws out plans to reduce the regional imbalances. Second is the sectoral planning. It basically involves formulation and implementation of the sets of schemes or programmes, aimed at the development of various sectors of economy. The Planning Commission of India has been entrusted with the task of formulation of plans for the nation. The Five Year plans are also formulated by the Planning Commission. Presently the 12th plan is in action.

Planning can also be target group based and target area based. The planning process has to take special care of economically backward areas such as drought-prone areas programme (DPAP), desert development programme (DDP) and hill area development programme comes under this category. Target group plans focus on the backward sections of the population. Small and Marginal farmers Development Programme and Integrated Tribal Development Programme are examples of target group planning.

Sustainable Development is an approach of development which has been adopted in the planning process. It takes care of the ecological, social and economic aspects of development during the present times and aims at the conservation of resources for the future generations. Indira Gandhi Canal System promotes sustainable development.

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