ITANAGAR, June 17 � Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu has pleaded the Centre for giving dispensation to the State in regards to upsizing of his 12-member ministry to facilitate his government accommodate more ministers to satisfy the various ethnic groups of the State.
The Chief Minister, leading a 17-member high level team comprising ministers and legislators, besides MP Takam Sanjoy, has yesterday called on Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh in New Delhi and apprised him of various problems facing the State.
Justifying his plea for upsizing the State ministry, Khandu said the State has 28 major tribes and 110 sub-tribes and many of them are not represented in his ministry. He appealed the Prime Minister to consider moving of an appropriate Bill to amend the Constitution for relaxation of Article 170 in regards to Arunachal Pradesh.
The CM and his team also urged the Prime Minister to issue directive to the FCI to release fund for regulating the payment of pending Hill Transport Subsidy (HTS) bills in order to strengthen the Public Distribution System in the State.
�Due to non-payment of the pending HTS bills, the PDS has been adversely affected in the State,� Khandu pointed out and added, �The State government has been put to tremendous pressure in the implementation of various Central government schemes related to food security.� He said if the FCI is allowed to delay the payment for so long, the food security will remain a distant dream in the State.
Khandu also urged Singh to issue necessary directive to the Ministry of Food & Public Distribution as well as FCI to release an advance of Rs 600 crore to pay the HTS bills, lying pending from 2004 to 2010.