West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is likely to skip the Niti Aayog's governing council meeting to be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 20, sources said on Friday.
The council, the apex body of the government's think tank, includes all chief ministers, lieutenant governors of Union Territories (UTs), several Union ministers and senior government officials.
The prime minister will chair the Saturday's meeting, where issues related to agriculture, infrastructure, manufacturing and human resource development will be discussed, according to an official statement.
"Mamata Banerjee may not attend the Niti Aayog's February 20 meeting," a senior TMC leader said on condition of anonymity.
Banerjee had earlier skipped the Niti Aayog's meetings and termed it as a "fruitless" exercise, alleging that the body has "no financial power" and cannot support the state plans.
The sixth meeting of the governing council will witness the entry of Ladakh for the first time, in addition to the participation of Jammu and Kashmir as a UT, the statement said.
This time, other UTs headed by administrators have also been invited to join, it added.
The governing council meets regularly and its first meeting took place on February 8, 2015.
However, the council did not meet last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.
As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.
Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.