Bengal accuses Centre of not releasing funds

Bengal accuses Centre of not releasing funds
Kolkata, Jan 16: Two West Bengal government today accused the Centre of not releasing funds deemed just under a federal structure.

The state rural development and PHE minister Subrata Mukherjee and state finance minister Amit Mitra both criticised the Centre for depriving the state of funds. "We have sent a report to the Centre that the state is not getting funds. The Centre is constitutionally bound to provide money for development of the state," Mukherjee told reporters at the state secretariat here.

Mukherjee said his department had sought Rs 1200 crore from the Centre under the MNREGA scheme, adding only Rs 100 crore was provided. Similarly, the state was lacking funds for constructing rural roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) due to which, contractors could not be paid.

"What we demand is our right and not seeking any dole. If needed, we will have to take the path of confrontation and we are also planning to meet Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram and Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh," he said.

Mitra said as per the Finance Commission's formula of funds devolution, the state was supposed to get Rs 1804 crore, but got only Rs 1379 crore. "We are not aware why Rs 425 crore has not been deposited in the state's exchequer," he said. Mitra said during the Left Front rule, the state was receiving Rs 800 crore as CST compensation. "But in the past two years, we are getting Rs 600 crore only," he added.


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