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Centre should ensure flow of funds for territorial govt: Puducherry CM

Puducherry: The Centre should take care of the financial requirements of Puducherry and the Union Territory should be brought under the ambit of the Central Finance Commission so that there would be flow of funds for the territorial government without break, Chief Minister V Narayanasamy said on Friday.

Winding up the two-day debate on the Motion of Thanks to the Lt Governor for her address to the Assembly, Narayanasamy said he had brought to the notice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi the need for extending sufficient grants to Puducherry so that the Union Territory could achieve balanced development.

Narayanasamy said Puducherry was getting a Central grant to the extent of 70 per cent of its budgetary requirements in the past particularly before opening the government’s separate balance account.

The pattern of grant was slashed to 30 per cent in the wake of implementation of the separate balance account in 2008, he said. Narayanasamy said that he had requested the Centre to ensure that there was rise by 15 per cent in the grants to Puducherry government every year.

He said Puducherry government was according priority for uninterrupted implementation of 20 kg free rice scheme, sanction of financial assistance to students joining professional courses under government quota and also for payment of monthly assistance under ‘old age pension’ and assistance to widows.

He said government had already taken steps to waive loans due from farmers to cooperative societies. Air service from Puducherry airport to Hyderabad and also Bengaluru would be introduced in July as some flight operators have come forward to provide the services from Puducherry.

Earlier participating in the debate, opposition AIADMK (Amma) legislature party leader A Anbalagan urged the Lt Governor to function in tandem with government for Puducherry’s development without engaging in any collision course. Opposition AINRC legislator Kobika said government should initiate steps to close all bars and liquor shops functioning in residential areas in Thirubhuvanai (reserved) constituency from where she was elected to the Assembly.

“These liquor outlets are a nuisance to the residents and the government should therefore initiate steps to close them down,” she said. After the reply by the chief minister, the Motion of Thanks was adopted by voice vote in the House which adjourned to meet on May 29.

PTI