Cabinet has approved the extension of the term of Fifteenth Finance Commission up to 30th November this year. It will enable the Commission to examine various comparable estimates for financial projections in view of reforms and the new realities to finalise its recommendations for the period 2020-2025.
Cabinet has also approved the proposed amendment to enable Fifteenth Finance Commission to address serious concerns regarding the allocation of adequate, secure and non-lapsable funds for defence and internal security of India. Under the Terms of Reference, it is proposed to ensure an assured allocation of resources towards defence and internal security imperatives.
The amendment provides that Fifteenth Finance Commission shall also examine whether a separate mechanism for funding of defence and internal security ought to be set up and how such a mechanism could be operationalized.
The Fifteenth Finance Commission was constituted by the President on 27th November, 2017. It was to submit its report on the basis of its Terms of Reference by 30th October this year covering a period of five years commencing from 1st April, 2020.
The constitution of the Commission has been in the backdrop of various major fiscal and budgetary reforms introduced by the Centre in the past four years like the replacement of the Planning Commission by NITl Aayog and removal of distinction between Non-Plan and Plan expenditure. The Terms of Reference of the Commission takes into account these reforms. (AIR NEWS)