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Khandu claims ‘mismatch’ in recommendations and actual funds released
NEW DELHI, Jan 4: Chief minister Pema Khandu has drawn concern over the disparity in the recommendations made by the 14th Finance Commission and the actual funds released for the state.
The 14 finance commission had recommended a substantially higher amount of funds for Arunachal Pradesh as compared to other states in the region. However, the state government has been facing issues in disbursing the amount as the release in the amount has not matched the government’s expectations.
Meeting the Union finance minister, Arun Jaitley, Khandu today said that there has been a ‘mismatch’ in the recommendations and the release of funds.
He said the disparity is a major cause of concern for a resource constraint state like Arunachal Pradesh and asked Jaitley to release the funds as recommended by the 14th Finance Commission at the earliest.
Stating that Arunachal Pradesh has limited resources and therefore unable to fund critical infrastructure projects, Khandu also said that the state also does not have access to international and multilateral funds from organizations such as World Bank, ADB due to China’s opposition.
Khandu also said that a comprehensive package to address critical infrastructural gaps is being formulated and sought resources for creating new infrastructure for the administrative centres replacing those built during NEFA-era.
He also sought Jaitley’s ‘personal support’ to begin construction on the Greenfield airport at Hollongi, a frontier highway which is under consideration by the ministry of home affairs, and East-West Industrial Corridor in the foothills, water-supply plans, enhancement of SDRF and NDRF grants to the state with special relaxation and change in modalities of expenditure, establishment of a cantonment based at Itanagar and release of one-time grant of Rs 1060 crore for several crucial unfinished centrally-sponsored schemes which have now been delinked such SPA, Product Infrastructure Development for Destinations and Circuits, JNNURM etc.
“We are grateful that the Smart City project for Pasighat has been approved and Itanagar has been shortlisted under the scheme. However, we need to revisit the modalities of implementation and have a 90:10 sharing between Centre and the states as is the case for other centrally sponsored schemes,” Khandu said.