Centre grants aid of Rs 21,614 crore to WB: Mamata

Mamata Banerjee
Kolkata, Aug 7: The Centre has granted the much- awaited relief of Rs 21,614 crore to West Bengal, including Rs 9,240 crore in grant-in-aid, to tide over its acute financial crisis, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Aug 6.

"We have received a fax message which says that the Centre has given us an allowance, not a package, of Rs 21,614 crore. Of this, Rs 9,240 crore will be in grant-in-aid for developmental work," Banerjee told reporters here.

Banerjee said the Centre has also raised the state's borrowing capacity by Rs 2,706 crore from the present limit of Rs 17,828 crore under the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act and the state would also be entitled to another Rs 6,600 crore under the FRBM.

Pointing out that her new government has repaid Rs 3,800 crore of central loans, Banerjee said this was no mean achievement and it has made the state entitled to loan another Rs 3,437 crore from the Centre. "Though I am not fully satisfied, I congratulate the Prime Minister and the Union Finance Minister. I know they have will have to follow rules," Banerjee said.

Blaming bad governance and poor fiscal management by the previous Left Front government for the state's financial crisis, she said, "the allowances given by the Centre will enable resumption of development work. At least, we will get some relief for three or four months." State Finance Minister Amit Mitra had held several rounds of meetings from Thursday till Aug 6 with his Union counterpart Pranab Mukherjee to work out a package to bail out the cash-strapped state.

Earlier, Banerjee had also met the Union Finance Minister, besides Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to request for a financial package.


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