Agartala, Aug 18
The Left Front government in Tripura wants Rs.14,600 crore in financial aid from the centre to deal with the fiscal crisis facing it, a state minister said here Wednesday.
Tripura is “not unhappy” with the centre sanctioning a financial package of Rs.21,614 crore earlier this month to the Trinamool Congress-led West Bengal government, Tripura Finance Minister Badal Choudhury said, after releasing a ‘white paper (report) on the deprivation of the TFC’.
But he insisted that the “centre should also respond to our proposal positively”.
Tripura had sought around Rs.27,000 crore but the Thirteenth Finance Commission (TFC), constituted for a period of five years from 2010 to 2015, recommended the sanction of about Rs.16,350 crore in 2009.
According to the minister, in view of TFC’s erroneous recommendations and awards on share of central funds, the resource-starved northeastern state has been facing unprecedented financial crisis.
“The state government has recently sought Rs.14,600 crore as advance special plan assistance and interest-free loan in the remaining period of TFC (until 2014-15),” said Choudhury.
The TFC, headed by renowned economist Vijay L. Kelkar, favoured big states and deprived small states, the minister said.
According to official reports, Tripura (55.96 percent) has the second-lowest increase of amount in TFC award over the twelfth finance commission after Himachal Pradesh (50.11 percent).
The 40-page ‘white paper’ – government’s perspective report on the fiscal crisis – said the TFC has failed to appreciate the need for higher level of government employment in Tripura necessitated due to the militancy since 1990.
“The Congress-led government has been trying to punish the Left Front government,” Choudhury said.