By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, Jan 27: Rubbishing Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi's allegations that the Centre has slashed funds to the State, BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma today produced a State government circular which indicated that in 68 of the 74 Central schemes being executed in the State, the funding pattern is either 90:10 or 100 per cent Central funding.
He also cited government records and claimed that the NDA government has in fact increased the allocation to the State as compared to the previous UPA regime.
Referring to the statistics, which, he claimed, has been uploaded on government websites, Sarma said the Centre has released Rs 18,990 crore to the State in 2014-15, whereas in the previous fiscal (during the UPA government), the total release was Rs 18,428 crore.
"Even this year, up to January 12, the Centre has released Rs 16,374 crore. Going by the trend, we feel that by March 31, it will cross the Rs 20,000-crore mark. So where is the slashing of funds? If the government websites are wrong, the Chief Minister should challenge it," Sarma said.
Sarma also produced a circular issued by the State's Additiol Chief Secretary of Planning & Development department on February last year, according to which there are 30 schemes being implemented in the State with 100 per cent Central funding.
The circular, which gives a schematic break-up of allocation, specifying the restructured State & Central shares in the schemes, purportedly states that the 90:10 funding pattern exists in 38 schemes. In one scheme, the funding pattern is 80:20, while in three others it is 75:25. The funding pattern is 70:30 and 50:50 in one scheme each.
Sarma said the Backward Region Development Fund scheme has been withdrawn across the country, so there is no point in the Chief Minister "grumbling" over it.
"When a new government comes, it is not bound to continue the schemes launched by the previous government. It can bring in changes. No other Chief Minister except Gogoi is picking holes in this move," he said.
Accusing the Chief Minister of confusing the people by giving a "half picture" of the state of affairs, Sarma also alleged that senior IAS officers have been threatened and forced to do certain things unbecoming of them. "Otherwise, why will a senior officer like (Fince commissioner) Ravi Kota conduct a press conference and speak on a political issue," Sarma said, pointing to Kota's press conference in which he briefed on the government's fiscal status and Central share schemes.