New Delhi: The government has brought the department of public enterprises (DPE) under the finance ministry in a bid facilitate its ambitious disinvestment programme.

Earlier, DPE was part of the Union ministry of heavy industries and public enterprises.

“Ministry of Finance (Vitta Mantralaya), after the sub-heading (v) Department of Financial Services (Vittiya Sewayen Vibhag), following sub-heading shall be inserted, namely:- (vi) Department of Public Enterprises (Lok Udyam Vibhag)” as per the Cabinet Secretariat notification dated July 6, 2021.

The gazette notification issued said these rules may be called the Government of India (Allocation of Business) Three Hundred and Sixty First Amendment Rules, 2021. “They shall come into force at once,” the notification said.

With the addition, this will be the sixth department under the finance ministry. The rejig comes ahead of Cabinet expansion slated later in the day.

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Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget 2021-22 had announced a big-ticket privatisation agenda, including privatisation of two public sector banks and one general insurance company.

As part of the divestment strategy for the financial sector, the government has decided to go for a mega initial public offering (IPO) of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) and residual stake sale in IDBI Bank during the financial year beginning April.

The government has budgeted Rs 1.75 lakh crore from stake sale in public sector companies and financial institutions during 2021-22.

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