2 May 2020

New Cabinet Committees2 min read

Why in the news?

Under the Transaction of Business Rules, the Government has reconstituted Cabinet Committees. These include – Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, Cabinet Committee on Accommodation, Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs, Cabinet Committee on Political Affairs, Cabinet Committee on Security, Cabinet Committee on Investment and Growth and Cabinet Committee on Employment and Skill Development.

About the Cabinet Committees

  • They are extra-constitutional in emergence. The Transaction of Business Rules (TBR), 1961 provide for their establishment. These Rules emerge out of Article 77(3) of the Constitution, which states: “The President shall make rules for the more convenient transaction of the business of the Government of India, and for the allocation among Ministers of the said business.” They are of two types—standing and ad hoc. The former are of a permanent nature while the latter are of a temporary nature. The ad hoc committees are constituted from time to time to deal with special problems.
  • They are set up by the Prime Minister according to the exigencies of the time and requirements of the situation. Hence, their number, nomenclature, and composition vary from time to time. Their membership varies from three to eight. They not only include the Ministers in charge of subjects covered by them but also include other senior Ministers.
  • Prime Minister is part of and heads the following committees:
    1. – Appointments committee of the cabinet
    2. – Cabinet committee on economic affairs
    3. – Cabinet committee on political affairs
    4. – Cabinet committee on security
    5. – Cabinet committee on investment and growth
    6. – Cabinet committee on employment and skill development
  • The appointments committee of the cabinet- To take decisions in respect of appointments and to decide upon temporary upgradation of post(s) to the level of Joint Secretary and above initially for a period of two years and temporary downgradation of such post(s) for a specified period.
  • Cabinet committee on accommodation- To determine the guidelines to govern out-of-turn allotment of Government accommodation.
  • Cabinet committee on economic affairs- to review on a continuous basis economic trends, problems and prospects for evolving a consistent and integrated economic policy framework for the country.
  • Cabinet committee on parliamentary affairs- To watch the progress of Government business in Parliament and to give such directions as may be necessary from time to time, in order to secure smooth and efficient conduct of such business.
  • Cabinet committee on political affairs- To deal with problems relating to Centre-State relations and to consider economic and political issues that have to be judged with a wider perspective.
  • Cabinet committee on security- to deal with all Defence related issues and to deal with issues relating to law and order, and internal security.
  • Cabinet committee on investment- to identify key projects required to be implemented on a time bound basis, involving investments of Rs. 1000crore or more, or any other critical projects, as may be specified by the Committee, in sectors such as infrastructure, manufacturing, etc.
  • Cabinet committee on skill development- to provide direction and consider all policies, programmes, schemes and initiatives for skill development aimed at increasing the employability of the workforce for effectively meeting the emerging requirements of the rapidly growing economy and mapping the benefits of demographic dividend.

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