By Our Staff
Guwahati, Nov 23: Stepping up his offensive against the Central government, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today dared the Union ministers "who have been misleading the people on Central funds" for an open television debate.
"Don't mislead the people. They (Union ministers) tell something inside the room, and another thing outside. I challenge them for a debate on Doordarshan," Gogoi, aggrieved at the slashing of Central funds to the State, told a press conference.
He also threatened to sit on a dhar in Delhi during the upcoming winter session if the Central government by then does not release the Rs 20,000 crore royalty on crude oil which is due since several years.
The Chief Minister also demanded a white paper from the DoNER ministry on how much funds it has received from the Fince ministry and how much it has released to the Northeastern states.
"If acche din has come, the fund flow to the states should have increased," Gogoi said, describing as "baseless" allegations that the State government had failed to furnish utilization certificates, which prompted the Centre to cut down funding.
Gogoi said in the year 2014-15, the DoNER ministry had released Rs 151.15 crore (NLCPR) and Rs 71.84 crore (NEC) to the State. This year upto September 18, the State has received just Rs 49.43 crore (NLCPR) and Rs 18.60 crore (NEC) from the ministry, he claimed.
Gogoi also claimed that the Central government has only "partially" restored the 90:10 funding.
He also took exception that the Railway ministry did not invite him for the iuguration of the Silchar broad gauge services. "Of course I had received a forwarding letter. But the card did not have my me. Even the NF Railway general mager did not make a courtesy call to me," Gogoi said.
"Today the Central government laid the foundation stone for a Rs 55 crore project (repairing of NH 52). But neither me nor the PWD minister knows anything about the project," he rued.
Launching another attack at Governor PB Acharya, Gogoi said his Sunday's statement has exposed his "commul mindset".
"First he backtracked from his previous statement. But his statement that Muslims should go to Pakistan has created more confusion," Gogoi said, adding that divisive forces get encouraged by such statements.