New Delhi: Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh has ceased to be ex-officio member of the Planning Commission and has been replaced by Minister of Urban Development and Parliamentary Affairs Kamal Nath.
"Yes. There is a reconstitution of the Planning Commission. That was done by the Prime Minister`s Office (PMO)", Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia said when asked whether Ramesh was no no longer an ex-officio member of the Commission.
Commission`s Secretary Sindhushree Khullar said this was being done in view of the added emphasis given by government on urban development, she said, adding "schemes like MNREGA is already taking care of the rural development".
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will chair the NDC, which is the apex policy-making body in the country. Besides central ministers, the Commission`s members include all Chief Ministers and regular members.
The other ex-officio members of the Commission, are Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, Chemicals and Fertilisers Minister MK Alagiri, Communications Minister Kapil Sibal, Law Minister Ashwani Kumar, HRD Minister M M Pallam Raju and Minister of State for Planning Rajeev Shukla.