GUWAHATI, March 17 � Accusing the BJP of launching a false propaganda against the Congress, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today claimed that Assam was in a �precarious� position during the BJP-led NDA�s rule at the Centre, compared to the situation during the Congress-led UPA�s tenure.
To buttress his claim, Gogoi presented a �white paper� before the media, detailing and comparing �contributions� made by the NDA and the UPA to Assam.
�The BJP-led NDA did grave injustice to Assam in terms of flow of development funds, sanction of projects, GDP growth, tackling insurgency, etc., while it was in power at the Centre. Now the BJP, especially its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, is indulging in a false propaganda to malign the Congress,� Gogoi said.
Gogoi said that infrastructure development which had been progressing at a snail�s pace during the NDA regime, got a boost with the UPA coming to power.
�Assam got a whopping Rs 57,832 crore during the 13th Finance Commission as against a meagre Rs 13,280 crore in the 11th Finance Commission when the NDA was in power. The State also bagged 11 externally-aided projects as against just two during the NDA�s term. Since 2004, the UPA has channelized funds worth Rs 1,90,620.38 crore, effecting a remarkable turnaround in the State�s economy. The annual plan size increased from Rs 1,521.28 crore to Rs 12,500 crore,� he added.
Singling out road, rail and air connectivity as another testimony to the UPA�s commitment to Assam�s welfare, Gogoi said that over 23,000 km of roads and 3,500 bridges were constructed in the State, with seven bridges across the Brahmaputra having been sanctioned.
�On the educational front, a number of institutions such as RGIPT, NDI, NIPER, IIIT, TISS, National Law School and Judicial Academy, CIPET, etc., have come up during the UPA tenure. On the flood-control front too, Assam received Rs 1,268 crore during the UPA regime compared to the Rs 208-crore assistance during the NDA rule,� he said.
The Chief Minister, while replying to a query, could not explain convincingly why the substantial flow of funds during the Congress rule failed to usher in inclusive growth in the State � something corroborated by low human development indices besides a high incidence of unemployment and poverty which had triggered a mass exodus of unemployed youths to other states in search of petty jobs.
On the vexed issue of cross-border illegal migration, Gogoi said that the Congress had done far better than the BJP in matters of fencing the Indo-Bangla border, expediting the trial of illegal migrants by the Foreigners� Tribunals, and updating the National Register of Citizens (NRC).