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Sneak Peak: Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI)

07 Feb 2018

The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) is the nodal agency for planning and facilitating the integrated development of statistical system in the country.  It implements Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) and  monitors Central Sector Infrastructure Projects costing Rs.150 crore and above, besides implementation of MPLADS.

The Ministry has two wings, namely, Statistics and Programme Implementation. The Statistics Wing called the National Statistical Organisation (NSO) consists of the Central Statistics Office (CSO) and the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO); whereas the Programme Implementation (PI) Wing consists of three Divisions, namely Infrastructure and Projects Monitoring Division (IPMD), the Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) Division and the Twenty Point Programme (TPP) Division.Besides these two wings, there is National Statistical Commission (NSC)established through a Resolution of Government of India (MOSPI) and one autonomous Institute, viz., Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) declared as an institute of National importance by an Act of Parliament.

The Indian statistical system is one of the best systems in the world. The Ministries officials have been associated with international agencies on the development of methodologies, particularly in the areas of national accounts, informal sector statistics, large-scale sample surveys, conduct of censuses, service sector statistics, social sector statistics, environmental statistics and classifications. India is a subscriber to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Special Data Dissemination Standards (SDDS) and maintains an ‘Advance Release Calendar’ for its data categories covered under the SDDS.

The last few years have been very significant years in terms of major policy decisions and adoption of new technology and systems for more efficient and effective data management and dissemination. Some of the major highlights of the activities of the Ministry during the last couple of years are as under:

United Nations Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics

The adoption of UN Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics is a reiteration of its commitment to good governance, in keeping with the spirit of considering official data as Public Goods, the Ministry is making available data of various large scale surveys to users.

Revision of Base Year of National Account

The Macro-economic aggregates of National Accounts like GDP, Savings, Capital Formation, etc. released by CSO are indicators of the country’s economic health.

The improvements in the Revised Series include- use of corporate sector data of Ministry of Corporate Affairs for about 5.5 lakh companies in mining, manufacturing and services sectors, Use of latest data of National Sample Survey, Improved coverage of Local Bodies and Autonomous Institutions etc.

Revision of Base Year of Index of Industrial Production (IIP)

To reflect the structural changes taking place in the industrial sector more accurately, the base year of Index of Industrial Production (IIP) has been revised to 2011-12. The new series of IIP with base 2011-12 was released in May 2017. The methodology has been changed in the new series to make the indices more robust and representative.

The Ministry alsoorganized a half-day Data Users’ Workshop for new series of all-India IIP at Vigyan Bhawan New Delhi on 30.08.2017 with a view to apprise the users of IIP about the changes introduced in the new series with base 2011-12.

Revision of Base Year of Consumer Price Index (CPI) 

The Reserve Bank of India uses Consumer Price Index (Combined) as the key measure of inflation for formulating the Monetary Policy of India.

Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS)

The Large scale employment surveys in India have so far been conducted by NSSO usually at 5-year intervals. The  Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS)has been launched in April 2017 to obtain employment data at shorter intervals. PLFS will use the Computer Assisted Personal Interview (CAPI) technique, which involves direct entry of data in Tablets at the field level. This will lead to higher accuracy and faster processing of data. The PLFS aims to Measure quarterly changes in statistical indicators of labour market in Urban Areas and Generate annual estimates of labour force indicators in both Rural and Urban Areas.

Collection of Statistics (Amendment) Bill 2017

The Collection of Statistics Act, 2008 is a Central Act that allows Central, State and Local Governments to collect statistics on socio-economic aspects but the Act is not applicable to J&K.To address this legislative vacuum, the Collection of Statistics (Amendment) Bill, 2017 was enacted.

Revision of Advance Release Calendar of GDP Estimates

Before 2017, the First Advance Estimates of GDP were usually released on 7th February, 3 weeks before the date of presentation of Union Budget. The First Advance Estimates of GDP constitute important inputs in formulation of Union Budget for the forthcoming year. With the date of presentation of Union Budget for 2017-18 advanced from 28th February to 1stFebruary in 2017, MoSPI made available the First Advance Estimates of GDP on 6th January, 2017 well before the presentation of the Union Budget. This revised release calendar will henceforth be adopted for subsequent years.

Surveys of NSSO

The NSSO has been conducting large scale surveys on multi-purpose socio-economic subjects. During last three years, NSSO conducted surveys on

The NSSO has also undertaken the work of digitization of Urban Frame Survey (UFS) maps in collaboration with National Informatics Centre (NIC) and the National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC). This will help in improvement of identification and demarcation of boundaries for smooth data collection.

Use of technology in data collection

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The United Nations General Assembly in September 2015 adopted the Resolution on ‘Transforming our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’ consisting of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and associated 169 targets to be achieved by 2030.  India also adopted this resolution. The SDGs have come into force with effect from 01 January 2016 and will continue till 2030.  Clear, well designed and timely statistical indicators are required to monitor and evaluate the various measures adopted to achieve the goals.  The Ministry is the nodal responsibility for developing an indicator framework. Five regional SDG workshops involving all States/UTs were held at Ahmadabad, Lucknow, Chennai, Guwahati and Bhubaneswar.

Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS)

The Ministry is responsible for the policy formulation, release of funds and prescribing monitoring mechanism of MPLADS. A new Integrated MPLADS Portal has been developed for use of all stakeholders, namely, Hon’ble Members of Parliament, State Nodal Authorities, District Authorities and Citizens. This Portal is an attempt towards ensuring transparency and making Citizens aware of the implementation of the Scheme.

It has been made mandatory for the durable assets created under MPLADS to be friendly to persons with disability, wherever feasible. Retrofitting in existing durable assets created under MPLADS to make them friendly to persons with disability has also been permitted. All moveable assets specifically permissible under Guidelines on MPLADS such as school buses, ambulances, etc. procured with MPLADS funds must be friendly to persons with disability. Few other major amendments made in the MPLADS guidelines are:

Monitoring of Infrastructure Projects

The Ministry monitors the ongoing Central Sector Infrastructure Projects costing Rs. 150 crore and above on time and cost overruns, through its Online Computerized Monitoring System (OCMS) on the basis of information provided by the project implementing agencies. The OCMS serves as a reliable MIS tool for review of projects by the Administrative Ministries and Cabinet Secretariat, as well as the PMO through its PRAGATI meetings. A number of other steps have been taken to ensure timely completion of projects. It is because of these measures and painstaking efforts that the cost overruns have come down from 19% in March 2014 to 12.6% in September 2017.

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