CENTRAL FUND SQUEEZE
By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, May 19: Seeking to assuage the fears of job loss of employees working under various Central schemes for which funds have been allegedly cut by the Central government, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today asserted that he will ensure that the jobs of contractual workers under the schemes continue.
“Even if the Central government slashes funds for the schemes, the State government will try to continue the schemes on its own for the welfare of the people. The jobs of contractual employees under various schemes will also continue,” he said on the sidelines of a function here.
However, the Chief Minister also added that if any scheme is stopped, its full responsibility will lie with the Central government.
“I won’t give up. I will continue to work for development of rural areas,” the Chief Minister said, maintaining that he has been maintaining transparency on fund allotment and release by the Centre.
Gogoi also claimed that the State government is trying to increase its revenue and that there has been no fincial mismagement by his government.
According to Gogoi, 12 Central schemes were struck off by the Central Government not only for Assam but also for all 29 States and 7 Union Territories in the country. Moreover, in many schemes like Rashtriya Krishi Vikash Yoja (RKVY), tiol Food Security Mission (NFSM), Integrated Watershed Magement Programme (IWMP) etc --- “the funding pattern was changed from 90:10, thus virtually declaring Assam and other NE States as non-special category States, putting these hitherto Special Category States on the same footing with resource-rich States.”
The Central government has slashed fund allotment for Assam by more than Rs 7,000 crore, according to Gogoi. The Central Government has either discontinued some programmes or downscaled them in terms of funds. Apprehensions have been raised about the future of various field functiories like Anganwadi workers, ASHA workers, voluntary personnel associated with MGNREGA etc following the Centre’s decision.