Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy Wednesday hit out at the Centre for keeping the Union Territory out of the purview of the fifteenth Central Finance Commission (CFC), calling it "absolutely discriminatory and baffling.
Addressing reporters here, he said, "While Jammu and Kashmir, a Union Territory has been included as part of the Central Finance Commission through Section 83 of theJammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill 2019 adopted in the Parliament, Puducherry which also has a legislature has been kept out of the purview of the Finance Commission."
Terming it as "absolutely discriminatory and baffling," he said,New Delhi, another Union Territory with a legislative Assembly wasalso discriminated against.
"We have been persuading the Centre quite often to ensure that Union Territory of Puducherry was also included as a constituent of the Commission so that it would get augmented financial assistance. But nothing had been done so far," he pointed out.
Narayanasamy further said, "the draft annual plan for 2019-20 finalised by his cabinet and the State Planning Board pegging fiscal requirements of Puducherry at Rs 8,425 crores was forwarded to the Home Ministry for approval.
While the Home Ministry had cleared the draft plan and forwarded it to the Union Finance Ministryfor its green signal we are yet to hear of the plight of the plan from the Finance Ministry.
"I hope in the next three days or so we will get communication from the Finance Ministry," he said.
The Chief Minister also charged the NDA government at the Centre with scaling down the quantum of scholarship and other benefits of welfare schemes meant for the scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and other weaker sections.
Reacting to the scrapping of special status for Jammu and Kashmir, Narayanasamy said the Centre has "trampled upon" the rights of the people of that state by doing so without ascertaining their wishes.
He took strong exception to the comments by the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister on senior Congress leader P Chidambaram that the latter was a "burden on the earth."
"The Tamil Nadu Chief Minister should realise his responsibility before airing his views. Chidambaram had done a lot for the welfare of Tamil Nadu when he was the Central Minister," he claimed.
"He (Palaniswami) should therefore exercise utmost caution before making comments on leaders of other parties," Narayanasamy said.
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