The demand for Statehood by the AINRC government should be substantiated with the financial viability for sustaining Puducherry as a state before consideration by the Central government, said V Narayanasamy, Union minister of state in Prime Minister’s Office.
Briefing newsmen at a press conference here on Sunday, he said that the demand for waiver of ` 4,000-plus crore loans due to Puducherry government was under consideration. Since the decision to waive off loans was a policy decision which would be applicable to all states and union territories, the Union government was delving on it.
Further Narayanasamy lashed out at Rangasamy for blaming Centre for Puducherry’s financial crisis. He contended that Rangasamy himself should take responsibility for the financial crisis instead of blaming it on the Centre.
He stated that based on the request by Rajya Sabha member P Kannan to the Planning Commission, more funds were allotted to the AINRC government than the previous regime headed by V Vaithilingam.
Despite holding the planning portfolio, the then chief minister V Vaithilingam could get only Rs 1, 085 crore from the Centre, but Rangasamy government was given Rs 2, 183 crores for the fiscal year 2011-12 apart from the plan allocation.
Elaborating on this, Narayanasamy said the Centre had provided Rs 153 crore towards CST compensation, `90 crore as funds under Centrally sponsored schemes, Rs 11 crore for police modernisation, Rs 513 crore for loss of revenue and `800 crore as assistance towards Thane cyclone relief. When compared to the fund received by Vaithilingam, the Centre had provided 100 per cent enhancement to Rangasamy by giving Rs 2, 183 crore, he added.
He criticised the Rangasamy government for its inefficiency and administrative lapses to mobilise the revenue assured to the planning commission and collect pending arrears due to government.
“A revenue of Rs 190 crore per month was assured, but the government could muster only Rs 130 crore per month. Apart from that Rangasamy failed to collect tax arrears of Rs 115 crore from petrol pumps and Rs 350 crore as power tariff arrear. If the arrears were collected, the revenue would have gone up. Rangasamy government, therefore, did not have any right to blame the Centre,” he said.
Further blaming IAS officers shows the inefficiency of the Chief Minister as chief secretary was handpicked by him and was posted on Rangasamy’s request, the MoS added. He asked Rangasamy whether he was not capable of extracting work from them or the IAS officers were not following the rules and norms.
Referring to the request made by Rangasamy to Narayanasamy and Kannan to get Rs 270 crore for funding of local bodies, he said the non-implementation of the agreement between Puducherry government and Ministry of Panchayat Raj had resulted in Centre providing no funds. As per the agreement, the territorial government should devolve powers to the elected bodies, but unfortunately it was not done by the UT government.