14 times when PM Narendra Modi leveraged Cooperative Federalism
In the last 8 years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has worked to make the process of policy-making and implementation more collaborative and consultative, thus making India more federally governed.
The second National Conference of Chief Secretaries, being chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will focus on achieving rapid and sustained economic growth in partnership with the states.
The idea behind this conference is that Cooperative Federalism, through Central Ministries and Departments working together with States in seamless coordination, is an essential pillar for the development and progress of New India. With this vision in mind, PM Modi conceptualised this conference, which was held for the first time last year in Dharamshala.
This is not an isolated example of when PM Modi has tried to leverage Cooperative Federalism to usher in efficiency and synergy to respond to many of India’s intractable challenges. In the last 8 years, PM Modi has worked to make the process of policy-making and implementation more collaborative and consultative, thus making India more federally governed.
Centre and State working together in Aspirational Districts Programme
PM Modi launched the Aspirational Districts Program in January 2018 to expedite the transformation of the most backward districts across the country through the convergence of government programmes and schemes. The broad strategy of the Aspirational Districts Programme includes Convergence - between central and state schemes; collaboration -- between Centre, state, district administration, development partners and citizens; and competition -- between districts.
Increasing states’ share in the divisible pool of tax resource
Having had the vast experience of governing a state as CM of Gujarat, PM Modi knows that the key to state development is the availability of sufficient resources. Taking a significant step in this direction, the government decided to increase states’ share in the divisible pool of taxes from 32% to 42%. This has provided states with more resources to design and implement programmes per their requirements and needs.
GST council and Fiscal Federalism
GST council is a joint forum where both centre and states are partners in decision-making on matters related to GST. The working of the Council is an example of fiscal federalism with reliance on decision-making through consensus.
PM Modi has initiated the unique concept of PRAGATI, the ICT-based multi-modal platform for Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation, involving Centre and State governments. The unique initiative brings the highest officials of the central government (Secretary), state government (Chief Secretary) and other officials on one table along with the PM, all working together proactively to improve the implementation timelines of various government programmes and schemes. The whole exercise is designed to provide a fillip to the spirit of cooperative federalism.
Prime Ministers used to attend DGP/IGP conferences annually, but over the years, it had become routine, and the PMs used to have a mostly symbolic presence in such conferences. However, since 2014, PM Modi has been keenly interested in the conference. He makes it a point to attend all conference sessions and encourages free and informal discussions with top police officials. He has also ensured that these meetings are taken out of Delhi and are held in states. This has helped develop a congenial environment for state heads of police to learn from each other’s best practices and work towards finding solutions to the major law and order issues facing the country.
’Chintan Shivir’ of Home Ministers of States
Prime Minister Modi addressed the ‘Chintan Shivir’ of Home Ministers of States in October 2022, where the PM said, “Chintan Shivir is a prime example of cooperative federalism”.
National Conference of Environment Ministers of all States
In September 2022, PM Modi inaugurated the National Conference of Environment Ministers in Ekta Nagar, Gujarat via video conferencing. The conference took forward the spirit of cooperative federalism and created further synergy amongst the Central and State Governments in formulating better policies on environmental issues.
Centre - State Science Conclave
PM Modi inaugurated Centre-State Science Conclave’ in Ahmedabad in September 2022 via video conferencing. This was a first-of-its-kind Conclave aimed at strengthening Centre-State coordination and collaboration mechanisms to build a robust science, technology & innovation ecosystem across the country.
Zonal Council Meetings
Recently, the PM went to Shillong to attend the meeting of the North Eastern Council on the occasion of the golden jubilee celebration of the Council. Further, the Modi government regularly holds meetings of the zonal councils to strengthen and promote cooperative federalism in the country. Home Minister Shri Amit Shah chaired the 30th Southern Zonal Council meeting in Thiruvananthapuram in September 2022, where he said, “Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the nature of the Zonal Councils has changed in the last eight years, and the number of its meetings has increased significantly”. He also chaired the 23rd meeting of the Central Zonal Council in Bhopal in August 2022.
National Labour Conference of Labour Ministers of all States and UTs
PM Modi addressed the National Conference of Labour Ministers of all States and Union Territories in August 2022. The conference was convened in the spirit of cooperative federalism to discuss various significant labour-related issues. It will help create further synergy amongst the Centre and State Governments in formulating better policies and ensuring effective implementation of schemes for the welfare of workers.
National Ganga Council
To ensure collective efforts are put in by Central Ministries and States towards the endeavour to clean River Ganga, Prime Minister conceptualised National Ganga Council. Recently, the PM chaired the second meeting of the Council on December 30 via video conferencing despite the passing away of his mother.
All India Water Conference
Understanding the need to bring all states and Ministers from across the country on a common platform to address issues related to water, PM Modi conceptualised a one-of-its-kind initiative - the 1st All India Annual State Ministers’ Conference on Water.
Under the leadership of PM Modi, India has got a unique opportunity to become President of the G20 group of countries and host its meetings across the year. These meetings will be held all across the country to showcase different cultures, customs, and cuisines on the global stage. Understanding the importance of taking along all states in this endeavour, the Prime Minister chaired a meeting of the Governors and Chief Ministers of States and Lt Governors of Union Territories on December 9 to discuss aspects relating to India’s G20 Presidency.
Post Budget meetings
PM Modi has pioneered post-budget webinar meetings with different Ministries and stakeholders to implement Union Budget provisions effectively. The webinars were conducted to accelerate the Budget's momentum and create a sense of ownership by all stakeholders in its implementation. These webinars also see state-level officers' participation so that states can leverage budget-related initiatives effectively.