The government may take a crucial decision on Saturday to withdraw from a score of small centrally-sponsored schemes and programmes whose annual budget is less than Rs 300 crore (Rs 3 billion).
The Finance Ministry has moved a proposal to that effect for consideration in the full-fledged Planning Commission meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to finalise the 12th Five-year Plan.
It has endorsed the recommendation of a panel headed by former cabinet secretary B K Chaturvedi that the Centre should concentrate only on bigger schemes and programmes which the states can not undertake with their limited resources.
The proposal is to transfer all small ongoing central schemes and programmes to the states, along with the money, as it would enable the Centre a better focus and control over the bigger schemes.
There are 147 centrally-sponsored schemes at present and these will be reduced to just 46 if the proposal is cleared.
Many ministries are, however, opposed to the proposal as they will be left with hardly one or two schemes and some having not even a single scheme.
The Chaturvedi committee, which was constituted to review the central schemes, suggested that the Centre will have better control over implementation and utilisation of funds if it concentrates only on 59 schemes, including nine flagship programmes.