Gujarat seeks full Central assistance for irrigation benefit for Narmada project

New Delhi, Jan.16 (ANI): Gujarat Finance Minister Nitinbhai Patel today urged the Central Government to extend 90 percent assistance for the Desert Development programme (DDP) areas at par with Drought prone Area Programme (DPAP) areas, for all projects under the Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIBP).

He also suggested that funding pattern of centrally sponsored schemes should not be changed to the disadvantage of the states for the duration of a five-year-plan period.

He said the current economic scenario needs a strong vision for sustained growth. Financial self reliance of the States needs to be strengthened so that they continue to contribute to India's GDP.

While speaking at the pre-budget meeting convened by Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram to obtain ideas and suggestions from state governments, Patel appraised that under present AIBP guidelines, the Central Government provides financial assistance to the tune of 90 percent in Drought Prone Area Programme (DPAP) areas and only 25 percent in Desert Development Programme (DDP) areas.

Certain command areas of Saurashtra, Kutch and North Gujarat besides some parts of Rajasthan fall under DPAP and DDP areas, but are not covered under AIBP, and therefore, the Gujarat Government is not getting requisite benefit under the AIBP scheme.

The issue should be settled once and for all by extending 90% assistance for DDP areas, the Minister stated.

Gujarat has taken a leap forward in the inter-basin transfer of water by constructing Sardar Sarovar dam and its associated canal system. Planning Commission has recently approved the revised cost of the project at the level of Rs.39,240 crore.

With the completion of the project, additional irrigation potential to the extent of 12.96 lac hectares would be created particularly in Drought Prone Desert areas. The state government should get financial assistance under the programme, he requested.

Patel said that Gujarat welcomes well-rounded effort for reforming the indirect tax system that would rationalize tax collection as well as improve economic efficiency across the nation but loss to States' revenues due to switch to GST should be compensated by the Centre. Dues of CST should be re-imbursed by the Central Government, he suggested.

Patel said that due to Vibrant Gujarat it has been possible to attract investments from India and abroad. GoI should evolve appropriate GST design so that development is encouraged and the States contributing to development and growth of country's GDP do not face difficulties.

Taking the issue of reduction of custom duty from five percent to zero percent on import for ship breaking, Gujarat Minister strongly demanded that Government of India should consider waiver of Custom Duty on import of ships and bring it at par with import of melting scrap.

Under Right to Education Act, in Gujarat it is estimated that an amount of Rs. 6333 crore is required to fulfill the responsibilities arising from the RTE Act. With an annual recurring expenditure of Rs.1300 crore, the Central Government should fully fund this additional expenditure and not to put additional burden on the state exchequer. Similarly, under Right to Food Act adequate provision should be made in the Union Budget to enable States to bear the additional burden of food subsidy.

Varesh Sinha, Additional Chief Secretary (Finance) also participated in the meeting. (ANI)

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Furious fifties by Duminy and Dinesh Karthik end a long losing streak for the Daredevils. More »

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

Royal Challengers overcame a stutter to cruise to the small target they were set by Mumbai Indians. More »

Glenn Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell seems to project an icy disdain when at the crease. Match situations rarely faze him and the bubble in which he plays excludes everyone … More »

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

His status as president of TNCA makes him eligible to attend the Working Committee meeting on Sunday. More »

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

Kevin Pietersen's hopes of reviving his international career appeared to end Saturday when ECB managing director Paul Downton said there was 'no way back'… More »

[REWIND] The world record that nearly wasn't

[REWIND] The world record that nearly wasn't

Twenty years ago this week, Brian Lara became Test cricket's highest scorer, but he almost didn't make it. More »

Moores gets second stint as England coach

Moores gets second stint as England coach

In a two-year spell from 2007 to 2009, the 51-year-old Moores led England in seven Test series. More »

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh's senior players will have three sessions with a psychological skill development coach later this month More »

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

Dalmiya feels that Srinivasan’s ‘power hungry’ attitude isn’t helping matters. More »

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Kevin Pietersen has ridiculed the idea of day-night Test cricket, saying the game would be so different to proper Test cricket that we will need a whole… More »

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

The bowlers restricted Hyderabad to 133 for 6 before Rahane and Binny took Rajasthan over the line. More »

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

The 36-year-old believes the T20 format and rule changes in 50-over matches have made a real difference. More »

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

The Kings XI batsman blasted a 43-ball 95 to help his team pull off a massive chase against Chennai Super Kings. More »

BCCI members want independent probe

BCCI members want independent probe

The board members are realising after the Supreme Court's observations that something has to be done — IS Bindra More »

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

Two former BCCI presidents, Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya, have reacted strongly to the news of the BCCI calling an emergent meeting on Sunday… More »

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Preview — The threat of Sunil Narine looms large again. More »

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Preview — Given the firepower in both line-ups, Dubai crowd may see another high-scorer More »

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj Singh was hardly convincing to begin with against Delhi, but a big dose of crowd support and a helping of poor bowling meant he had the opportunity… More »

Stressed Trott stands down again

Stressed Trott stands down again

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Friday confirmed that batsman Jonathan Trott is to take another break from all cricket with immediate eff… More »

PCB starts another coach hunt

PCB starts another coach hunt

The PCB has decided to not extend the contracts of head coach Moin Khan, fielding coach Shoaib Mohammad and batting consultant Zaheer Abbas, and has invited… More »

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

England all-rounder Ben Stokes admits he must keep his anger under control if he is to end his international exile. More »

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Yuvraj Singh was back to his best in his first match for Royal Challengers Bangalore. More »

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistani cricket authorities have launched an investigation after a number of current international stars played in exhibition matches in the United States… More »

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

The BCCI will hold an emergent working committee meeting on April 20 to discuss the future course of action with regard to the Supreme Court hearing concerning… More »