NEW DELHI, June 6 � Faced with higher salary bills and decreasing State share of Central taxes, the North Eastern States have called for more borrowing powers.
A meeting of the Chief Ministers and Finance Ministers of the North Eastern States convened by Union Finance Minister, Pranab Mukherjee saw the ministers seeking additional borrowing powers to tide over the crisis.
Later talking to newsmen, Chief Minister, Tarun Gogoi said though North Eastern States have difficulties, Assam, is comparatively better. �Our financial position is much better and in fact they have complimented me,� he said.
�We have managed us finances better. In 2001, our position was worse than other North Eastern States. Today it is better than almost all NES. Though economy has improved still our position is better,� he said.
�As our expenditures and salaries have gone up.�
We have asked for excise duty reduction, other concessions. Most of the States have asked for more borrowing powers. But I have not asked for more borrowing powers. Whatever we have asked for they have given us. What borrowing powers they have given us, I have not borrowed,� he said.
At the meeting of the Planning Commission, deputy Chairman of Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia said there had been significant improvement in the financial health of Assam during the recent past. The State Government has achieved and fiscal deficit reduction targets under the FRBM for the first three years of the 12th Finance Commission period.
This has entitled the State of substantial debt waiver. In 2009-10 also the efficient financial management has benefited the State directly by way of general debt relief and debt waiver, he said.