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Centre withholding Rs 17,000 crore due to State: Gogoi

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Dec 25 - Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today alleged that the Central Government has withheld an amount of around Rs 17,000 crore due to the State against oil royalty and other developmental funds meant for the State. However, he reiterated his Government�s commitment to push the develop agenda to continue the State�s journey on a robust growth trajectory in spite of the Centre�s reduced allocation of funds to the State.

In a statement here today, Gogoi said, �Irrespective of the Centre�s indifferent attitude towards Assam and its people and reduction of developmental funds, the State Government is determined to pursue welfare schemes along with its development agenda rigorously.� He further said that though change in the funding pattern and the resultant reduction in funds flow have had an impact on the development of the State, the Government is devising a mechanism to generate independent sources of revenue.

Gogoi further claimed that if the Centre had not withheld around Rs 17,000 crore due on oil royalty and other developmental funds meant for Assam, the State Government could have pursued its development agenda more vigorously. Alleging that the Centre has even slashed allocations for rural infrastructure for the IAY scheme and MGNREGA, the Chief Minister said, �Such fund cut is an antithesis to rural development and indicates the NDA Government�s anti-poor and pro-capitalist stance.�

The Chief Minister further said that in spite of the Centre�s indifferent attitude, the State Government has made giant leaps and moved to the seventh position from the 19th in composite development which was aptly clear from India Today�s State of the States Survey-2015. With its simple mantra for development, Assam has ranked first in infrastructure and has registered a 17 per cent increase in the length of pucca (black-topped) roads against the national growth average, which is only 4 per cent (India Today survey).

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