NE CMs seek Modi intervention to continue Special States Category status
Chief ministers of the eight Northeastern states have sought prime minister Narendra Modi’s intervention to continue with the Special States Category status to their respective states so that the special financial support they get from the Centre was not done away with.
The plea, which was made in the form of a resolution and signed by the eight chief ministers, said after analyzing the 14th Finance Commission’s recommendations and the Union Budget of 2015-16, they found that the Special States category status of the Northeastern states was going to be discontinued. “This will be nothing but a big blow to the interest of the Northeastern states which has been suffering from backwardness and under-development for long. This dangerous and disastrous move cannot be accepted,” they said.
“The decision taken in the Union Budget of 2015-16 not to keep any provision under Normal Central Assistance (NCA) and Special Central Assistance (SCA) will drastically affect the position of finance in the Northeastern states. The NE states suffer from infrastructure bottlenecks and Iis largely dependent on the Centre for funding under NCA and SCA to meet their infrastructure requirements. This should be continued for all the NE states so hat they can catch up with other parts of the country,” a letter forwarded to the prime minister by Tripura chief minister Manik Sarkar on behalf of the eight chief ministers, said.
They also pointed out that while the entire gap of Non-Plan Revenue Expenditure used to be provided by the Centre for the Special Category states, withdrawing this status would make it extremely difficult for the NE states to manage the situation arising out of it.
The chief ministers also told the prime minister that though the sharing pattern for centrally sponsored schemes between the Special Category States and the Centre was 90:10, the union budget has indicated that this would be discontinued forcing the states to contribute more. “Any change in the sharing pattern will only add to the states’ liabilities which they will not be able to meet, thereby leading to cessation of pro-people developmental schemes in the Northeast,” they said.
Source:: Indian Express