Centre ‘ignores’ Puducherry, ‘cripples’ its development: Pondy CM

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Puducherry, June 23(PTI): Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy on Saturday hit out at the NDA government at the Centre for “ignoring” the Union Territory on several counts and ‘slashing grants,’ crippling its developmental projects.

Addressing reporters here, Narayanasamy said although he had written to the Prime Minister on five occasions in the past seeking an appointment with him to place before him the issues concerning Puducherry he had not received any reply so far.

“Puducherry, a small Union Territory needed Centre’s assistance for developmental activities. But want of adequate assistance from the Centre had been crippling Puducherry in various sectors,” he alleged.

“I plan to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi next week in Delhi to seek his intervention for the sanction of funds for development of Puducherry,” he said. In a veiled reference to Lt Governor Kiran Bedi with whom he had been at loggerheads on various issues, Narayanasamy said, “some central government representatives here are also interfering in routine administration of Puducherry under the pretext that they had the authority to do so.”

“The NDA government is putting several blockades by slashing the grants and also by keeping Puducherry out of the purview of the Fifteenth Central Finance Commission,” he charged.

By declining membership to Puducherry in the Finance Commission, the Central grant now available at 42 percent of the total budgetary requirements for states had been fixed at 25 percent for the Union Territory, he said.

The Chief Minister sought the Centre to grant special incentives to entrepreneurs coming forward to start industries here. “Such incentives are available in North Eastern States and Puducherry which lacks raw materials and also facing the need to market the produced goods in other pockets should also be extended the incentives,” he contended.

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