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Central funding states irrespective of whoever is ruling: Jaitley

By IANS Updated: Feb 11, 2018 8:38 pm
Agartala: Senior BJP leader and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley along with party leaders Syed Shahnawaj and Himanta Biswa Sarma releases party’s vision document for the Assembly polls in Agartala on Sunday. PTI Photo (PTI2_11_2018_000125B)

Agartala, Feb. 11 (IANS/PTI): Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Sunday said the Narendra Modi government is providing funds to the states irrespective which party is ruling them, based on Finance Commission’s proposals and stipulated rules and not individual wishes.
Seeking to refute harges of many states including Left-ruled Tripura that the Centre is not providing due funds to the states and curtailing financial support to many central sponsored schemes, he said that the present government provides funds irrespective of all political situations in the state.
“Modi government wants full development of all the states including Tripura. Developmental politics must come forward. Central government always guided by Finance Commission recommendation, standard rules and norms and stipulated methodology,” Jaitley told the media after releasing the Bharatiya Janata Party’s “Vision Document” for Tripura ahead of the February 18 polls.
He also said that the central funding pattern of 90:10 between the central and state government in any project in the northeastern states and three other hills states including Jammu and Kashmir, has been continuing. Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is the party’s Tripura election in-charge, said that like for other northeastern states, the party has a “Vision Document” for the state.
Top BJP leaders, including President Amit Shah, Union Ministers Jaitley and Nitin Gadkari, General Secretary Ram Madhav, Shahnawaz Hussain, West Bengal’s Mukul Roy and Locket Chatterjee besides Sarma are in the state to campaign.
Madhav said that Prime Minister Modi, who addressed two elections rallies in Tripura on Thursday, will address two more public gatherings on February 15.
Jaitley said: “In the last assembly elections in 2013, the BJP got very small percentage of votes (1.54 per cent) in Tripura. Now this time it is a big political force… every day, every minute, the BJP continues to expand its base.”
Attacking the Manik Sarkar-led Left government, he said: “Following their party ideology and unrealistic approach, the Left government in Tripura kept the investment away from the industry starved states. I believe that centre and state should work together to remove the regional disparities.”
“Transparent public employment is necessary to provide basic services to the people. Compared to other smaller states, Tripura is lagging far behind in many sectors,” he said, also alleging Left party cadre and party-nominated employees dictated governance.
He said that after the BJP come to power in Tripura, it would do justice to the government employees by hiking the salaries as per the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission, while talking steps for socio-economic and cultural development of the state’s tribals.
He said that the BJP government wants development of human capital and to fulfil this plan at least one degree college would be set up in each assembly segment in Tripura to improve higher education.
In the 28-page “Vision Document”, the BJP pledged to provide one employment opportunity to every household, free education for women till graduation, free smatphones to youths, increase of minimum wages to Rs 340, a probe into the chit fund activities and regularising all contractual government employees.
Tripura polls: SEZs, free smartphone to youth in BJP’s Vision
BJP leader and Union minister Arun Jaitley today released the party’s manifesto for Tripura Assembly election, which promised that SEZs would be set up in the state and smartphones would be given to the youth for free if the saffron party is elected to power in the state.
Election to the 60-member Tripura Assembly would be held on February 18. The BJP is contesting in 51 seats while its alliance partner Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) has fielded candidates in nine seats.
The manifesto — ‘Vision Document Tripura 2018’ — said Special Economic Zones (SEZs) would be be set up in the state for sectors like food processing, bamboo, IT and textiles.
It promised employment to every household, free education for women till graduation, 7th pay commission salary to state government employees and free smartphones to youth.
Jaitley said Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants the country to develop, which is why the BJP in Tripura has focused more on development issues in its vision document.
He said one degree college would be set up in each constituency of the state to upgrade the education system.
The senior BJP leader also announced that adequate number of multi-speciality hospitals and an AIIMS-like hospital would be set up in the state.
Tripura would be made a logistic hub for transportation in the entire northeastern region due to its proximity with Bangladesh and the ports in that country, Jaitley said.
The vision document states that stories of Tripura’s erstwhile royal rulers would be included in school curriculum and Agartala airport would renamed after Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya, the last king of Tripura.
It promised investigation into the Rose Valley scam and those found guilty would be jailed.
The minimum grant under social welfare schemes would be Rs 2000 per month and the minimum wage would be Rs 340, the vision document said, adding CBI inquiry into the killing of two journalists Shantanu Bhowmick and Sudip Datta Bhowmick – would be instituted.

By IANS Updated: Feb 11, 2018 8:38:09 pm