Pondy requires Rs 1,200 cr: Vaithilingam

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Puducherry, Sep 15: The immediate financial requirement of the Union Territory was estimated at around Rs 1,200 crore, Chief Minister V Vaithilingam today said.

Addressing the press here, Mr Vaithilingam said though it was initially estimated at around Rs 356 crore, it was noticed some of the departments were left out.

A fresh report prepared showed the enhanced amount required for the implementation of various welfare and developmnental schemes.

To a question, he said the financial crisis occurred due to the launch of certain schemes without the concurrence of the Centre or the Planning Commission.

The administration was committed to generate Rs 150 crore as revenue and was mobilizing it.

He and his Cabinet collegues intend to visit New Delhi with the report on Wednesday to seek financial assistance from the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister.

After participating in the CWC meeting, he called on AICC president Sonia Gandhi and apprised her of the power crisis here and requested for the supply of an additional 70 MW to which she agreed to consider.

The present requirement of Puducherry was 270 MW and availability was only 180 MW. He expressed hope the Union Territory would soon get the additional 70 MW of power.

To a question, Mr Vaithilingam ruled out possibility of imposing total prohibition in the Union Territory and said people were not in favour of it. The Chief Minister also said his administration was getting the 'fullest cooperation' from officials. However, he said there would a major reshuffle of officials in all departments.

Mr Vaithilingam said a three-member Ministerial Committee had been constituted to go into the past, present and future status of the government medcial college here.

After getting it's report, a decision on the handing over the building to the ESI Corporation would be taken.

To a question, he said the introduction of ''Goondas Act'' in the Union Territory would decided only after studying the issue carefully at a Cabinet meeting.

A free hand was being given to the police and they could take action in case of any wrong deed.

However, the police would not be permitted to commit any wrong deeds, he added.

should not be given to independent legislators who defeated congress candidates in the last election, Mr Vaithilingam said he was not aware of the resolution. If so, things would be sorted out through mutual discussion.The posts would be filled up as and when required.

The funds required for provision of gold coins to retired teachers was made available and the Teachers Day celebration, which was postponed, would be conducted this week.

The administration would accord priority to poor families in extending the Kamaraj Educational Assistance Scheme for MBBS and Engineering courses.However, nobody would be denied of the facility.

To another question,he said already six essential commodities were being provided through the ration shops and the possibility of providing ten items as in Tamil Nadu would be examined.

He said the administration would take a decision on the devolution of powers, including financial, to elected local body representatives after placing the matter in a Cabinet meeting.

On the demand to celebrate November one as the Independence Day of Puducherry instead of August 16,Mr Vaithilingam said the freedom fighters were asked to identify the difference between the November one and August 16 following which a decision would be taken.


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