GUWAHATI: Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today released a white paper on financial condition of Assam and asked the NDA government at Centre to come out with a fact- sheet on what it has done for the state during the last 20 months.
"We have made this white paper a public document. The BJP has been demanding it for a long time. Now let the NDA government do the same and publish a white paper on what it has done for Assam since May, 2014," Gogoi said at a press conference here. Releasing the document 'A White Paper on State Finances', he said the official fact-sheet will be sent to the Prime Minister, Finance Minister and NITI Aayog for their consideration.
The document pointed out that Assam is slated to incur a loss of Rs 9,189 crore during the current financial year due to shortfall in release of funds, cut in money for Centrally- sponsored schemes, de-linking of existing schemes and change in funding pattern.
The white paper presented financial information related to the state from 2000-01 fiscal year, when Gogoi came to power for the first time, to the current financial year. "The average fund transfer rose from Rs 3,789 crore (in NDA period from 1998-99 to 2003-04) to Rs 12,760 crore (in UPA period from 2004-05 to 2013-14), which was almost four times more," it added.
As a whole, Assam received Rs 22,734 crore during the first NDA government, while it was Rs 1,27,595 crore in the 10 years of UPA tenure. "The NDA's first term was the worst period in the history of independent Assam regarding economic condition and law and order situation. After lots of effort, peace returned and our economy stabilised. Now, the present NDA government, instead of helping us, is depriving of our rights," Gogoi said.
He also claimed that he had requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to form a committee comprising officials of both central and state governments to verify the financial condition of Assam, but "why is Modi reluctant to do so?" In the foreword of the document, Gogoi said, "...the Government of Assam has decided to bring out a white paper on the state finances with view of informing the people regarding the significant improvement achieved during the tenure of my present government and injustice done by the present NDA government to Assam."
He said the per capita income of the state increased to Rs 49,480 in 2014-15 from Rs 13,059 in 2001-02, while the ratio of debt and gross state domestic product (GSDP) came down to 17.03 per cent from 30.54 per cent during the same period. The GSDP of the state also rose to Rs 1,83,798 crore in FY'15 from Rs 53,398 crore in FY'05, registering a growth of 15.26 per cent at current price in 2014-15.
"The macro-level fiscal parameters are now healthy and stable, and the state is marching towards peace, prosperity and progress. "However, due to declining trend of plan allocation by the Centre after assumption of the office of the present NDA government, the state government has been facing acute shortage of fund for the state plan," Gogoi said in the white paper.